Looking for a great book that will make you not only want to be a better person and parent, but also give you some tools to getting there?
“What Happened to You: Conversations on Trauma, Resilience, and Healing” by Bruce Perry, MD, PhD and Oprah Winfrey
This is the second Dr. Perry book that I’ve read this year (the first being “The Boy Who Was Raised as a Dog,” another fantastic read!) and I really, really enjoyed it. Although it tackles some really difficult topics (racism, trauma), it isn’t heavy and overwhelming…it’s thought provoking and actually makes me excited to be a better person.
Some of the topics included in this book:
~ ACEs (Adverse Childhood Experiences): Studies on ACEs have shown that the more adversity you have in your life, the greater your risk for health problems, suicide, mental health problems, substance abuse/dependance, and more. [It is important to note the difference between correlation and causation. While ACEs are correlated with a great risk of health problems, etc., they do not cause health problems, etc.
~ Sequence of Engagement: So often, we try to reason with our children or others (or ourselves!) when they/we are in a dysregulated stated. Dr. Perry walks us through the “3 R’s:”
Before you can talk or reason through a situation, you need to be regulated! (This is where those coping strategies, mindfulness, and grounding strategies come in that your therapist has probably reviewed and reviewed and reviewed with you ☺ ).
~ Comments on our educational system, including my favorite quote: “Our current public education system is good at producing workers, but it can be a miserable place for creators, artists, and future leaders.”
~ Difference between ‘resiliency’ and ‘malleability.’
~ Difference between racism and implicit bias.
~ The importance of human CONNECTION and RELATIONSHIPS
Although this book may not be the typical ‘beach read,’ I hope you check it out!!