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Helping Teens Who Cut, First Edition: Understanding and Ending Self-Injury Paperback – June 11, 2008
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"Dr. Hollander's book is a lifeline to parents, offering reassurance and wisdom supported by experience. He seems to really understand how frightening it is to be the parent of a teen who cuts. This book provides relief, hope, and guidelines to follow. I am truly grateful for this book." --Parent, New York City
"Dr. Hollander manages to take a very complex problem and describe it in a language accessible to teens, parents, and those working with them. Most importantly, he does this without sacrificing what we know scientifically about teen cutting. He is one of the top trainers in dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) worldwide, and it shows in this book. His skills as a therapist and his experience applying DBT with teens shine through. DBT is an effective treatment, and this book makes many of the fundamentals of the treatment accessible to the public. It is long overdue."--Marsha M. Linehan, PhD, ABPP, Professor and Director, Behavioral Research and Therapy Clinics, Department of Psychology, University of Washington
"This is an extremely thoughtful, wise, and empathic guide for the parents of teens caught up in the painful and complex web of self-injury. Both down to earth and practical, the book draws on substantial clinical experience and the latest scientific data. Dr. Hollander takes the mystery out of this confusing but all-too-prevalent behavior, debunks the many myths surrounding it, and deftly delineates state-of-the-art treatment principles. Dr. Hollander has done us all a great service with this book."--William S. Pollack, PhD, Department of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School; author of Real Boys
"A truly remarkable book. Dr. Hollander offers a wealth of information about cutting, reveals the communication mistakes that even well-intentioned parents make, and illustrates specific ways of talking with kids to help them stop hurting themselves. Empathic, easy to read, and jargon free, this book is a major resource for parents and professionals alike. I recommend it highly."--Robert Brooks, PhD, coauthor of Raising Resilient Children
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What this book does is in simple layperson language give basic explanations as to why people self-injure, describe how DBT skills can be used to help people who self-injure (e.g., DEAR MAN, GIVE, FAST, mindfulness, radical acceptance, validation), and give tips for parents about how they can more effectively interact with their teens when they have this issue. Hollander used some good illustrative anecdotes and examples to illustrate how to apply the skills.
I would highly recommend this book to the parents of teens and young adults who self-injure, particularly those who are already enrolled in a DBT program or are considering DBT for treatment.
However, I would not particularly recommend it for professionals who are already well-versed in DBT because it was 98% obvious information. I was disappointed because it provides very basic rather than advanced info about the topic and is really meant for people who know very little about DBT and self-injury prior to reading this book.
Not only does the book explain things well, but it has examples of different cutters and triggers that cause them to cut. There are also examples of different parents and how the way the interact with the teen may not be helpful even though their intention is to be helpful. The examples are so realistic that I could identify the cutter I know and both her parents. The author nailed all three people perfectly. It gives examples of what to say and what not to say with an explanation of why why one way will help and the other way would be unintentionally harmful.
The book does a good job explaining CBT so that I could talk intelligently with the teen's Psychologist about this therapy.