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Choosing to Live: How to Defeat Suicide Through Congnitive Therapy Paperback – November 1, 1996


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Choosing to Live: How to Defeat Suicide Through Congnitive Therapy + How I Stayed Alive When My Brain Was Trying to Kill Me: One Person's Guide to Suicide Prevention + Suicide: The Forever Decision
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: New Harbinger Publications; 1 edition (November 1, 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1572240563
  • ISBN-13: 978-1572240568
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.5 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.3 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #298,159 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

“This book tackles, head-on, a significant, high-priority clinical problem that many patients and therapists dread and avoid. It offers cool, clear thinking, immensely helpful to both patient and clinician, and dozens of practical, down-to-earth suggestions. A brave and extremely sensible book from which I learned quite a bit. I am delighted to have this ‘weapon’ in my armory when I work with suicidal patients.”
—Jacqueline B. Persons, Ph.D., Director, Center for Cognitive Therapy, Oakland, California



“Tom Ellis and Cory Newman have written a wonderful book. The writing is clear and the message in important. The authors are gifted clinicians, and their empathetic concern for depressed and suicidal people comes through on every page. Anyone who has contemplated suicide and anyone with a suicidal loved one will profit from the straightforward and helpful suggestions in this book.”
—Danny Wedding Ph.D., M.P.H., Director, Missouri Institute of Mental Health



“In the best tradition of giving psychology away, this easy-to-read book can help suicidal people understand their suffering while they take charge of their own healing. Some readers will need additional professional help, but all with benefit from Choosing to Live’s message of hope and reassurance that suicide is not the answer.”
—Paul G. Quinnett, author of Suicide: The Forever Decision

About the Author

Thomas E. Ellis, Psy.D., is an associate professor in the Department of Behavioral Medicine and Psychiatry at the West Virginia University School of Medicine.

Cory F. Newman, Ph.D., is clinical director of the Center for Cognitive Therapy and an assistant professor at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine.


More About the Author

Dr. Thomas Ellis is Director of Psychology at the Menninger Clinic, Houston, Texas, and Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Baylor College of Medicine. In addition to his books, he has published numerous journal articles and book chapters related to his research aimed at developing more effective therapies for suicidal individuals. His self-help book, Choosing to Live: How to Defeat Suicide through Cognitive Therapy, has been translated into five languages and was awarded the Certificate of Merit by the Association of Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies.

Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

51 of 52 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 23, 1999
Format: Paperback
As an RN and a person with bipolar disorder, I have walked the tightrope of life/death scenerio many times. Stressors of daily living, family, divorce etc. had cause my cycling and depression to increase and had I have attempted suicide several times.
I have read extensively both selfhelp books and autobiographies of people with depression and bipolar disorder to no avail looking for help.
Although I am on medications and seeing a cognitive-behavorial therapist for some time and while I understood what he was saying. I wasn't able to assimiliate it until I read this book.
This book changed my life. I give this book freely to friends who are in need of answers for this book has both rich insite and the forthrightness that hits home.
Thank you,the authors, for writing it. It has closed the door to suicide forever for me and has truly changed my life.
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33 of 35 people found the following review helpful By Kevin B on February 8, 2000
Format: Paperback
I do individual therapy and crisis intervention in a large community mental health center. This book has proven itself as an effective tool for helping those in crisis, as well as those who have an ongoing struggle with suicidal thoughts. This is, by far, the most practical, readable, and useful book written for the person struggling to stay alive. I encourage nearly all of the clients with whom I work to purchase and use this book. I even keep a loaner copy on hand for those who cannot afford it!
Perhaps the greatest strength of this book is the authors' ability to teach numerous proven therapy techniques while conveying a genuine concern and respect for the person struggling to stay alive. This helps create a sense of hope. For treatment providers, it models compassionate cognitive therapy for those who arguably need it most. I think this book should be required reading for mental health professionals whose training programs often do not adequately address work with suicidal individuals.
If you struggle with thoughts of suicide, know someone who does, or work in the field of mental health, I highly recommend this book. It will change the way you look at suicide.
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35 of 38 people found the following review helpful By Patrizia on November 6, 1999
Format: Paperback
I read this book at a tough time in my life when I was being treated for depression and seeking and collecting reasons to "keep on keeping on." Besides clear information on the nature of depression and suicidal thinking, the book has several ways to personally interact with the material, through charts to complete, lists to make, etc. These help the reader to brainstorm about wiser and healthier responses to problems and sad or overwhelming emotions. It was a significant aid to the work that an experienced therapist was able to offer me. Now a few years later, as a counselor myself, I find I can use this book with my clients who are in therapy as a type of "homework" that they can work through on their own. I recommend this book as well to anyone who has a loved one dealing with suicidality. It will help you get inside his/her thinking so you can be a wiser helper. One cavaet: if you buy this book because you are wrestling with suicidal thinking or plans please also talk to your M.D., call a local crisis hotline (or 1-800-273-TALK) or 911, or go to your hospital's ER. Let a professional add his/her training to your wise and brave choice to live!
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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Michael G. Rayel, MD on April 28, 2004
Format: Paperback
Choosing to live is one of a kind. It offers cognitive behavioral therapy as the basis for effective suicide intervention. The first few chapters discuss suicide's stigma and risk factors. The first chapter appropriately opens with the statement, "Getting Rid of the Stigma"-an accurate description of our priorities.
The remaining chapters deal with various cognitive distortions and strategies. These thought distortions such as all-or-nothing thinking, overgeneralization, and shoulds and musts, can be the precursors of aggravation. They are also the fuel that maintain and worsen the suicidal fire.
The book's cognitive behavioral interventions to manage and control suicidal thoughts are remarkable. I like the "Socratic Method"-asking the right questions to create clarity in ones thinking. "Logical/Empirical Approach" is also an effective way of dispelling inappropriate thoughts about oneself. For instance, if you believe that you're performing poorly at work, then you have to start "testing" the validity of such belief.
Choosing to live has offered a lot of strategies-ventilation, mobilizing support networks, and distraction-that sound reasonable and easy to do. I therefore recommend this book to anyone who desperately needs to cope.
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29 of 34 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 22, 2001
Format: Paperback
I read this book for obvious reasons. I believe that this is a valuable book for many people out there who are suffering so much that living has become unbearable. However, in my case, it didn't give me the help that I needed. I don't have answers of why, since other reviews show positive accomplishment. I am severely depressed and found myself struggling very hard to do the book's homework. Regardless, I worked on the procedures and even felt positive for a very brief moment but unfortunately I am back to square one.
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21 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Norma Desmond on December 25, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book seems to pretend to be open-minded, while herding the reader in the direction the authors wish to go. The book also glosses over the idea that there are serious, unsolvable dilemmas, and instead gives examples of easily solved issues.

A person facing severe, unremitting problems may feel trivialized by this book.
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