Books on Stairs

It would be impossible to collect a full list of books that talk about abuse and recovery. I mean seriously! When we come across something we read and liked ourselves, we add it to the reading section of the website. And if you want to submit reviews for that section, please do get in touch!

In honor of Read a Book Day, we asked some of our followers on social media to share their go-to resources. Then we added some of our own.

Surviving-a-Borderline-Parent-by-Roth-FriedmanSurviving a Borderline Parent
by Roth & Friedman

This step-by-step guide helps adult children of parents with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) cope with, and heal, from the devastating effect their parent’s disorder had on their childhood. Characterized by unpredictability, violence, uncontrollable anger, deep depression, and self-abuse; sufferers of BPD are often unable to meet the physical and emotional needs of their children.

This book was recommended by a follower who described it as an, “Excellent book on establishing and maintaining boundaries with anyone, with real-life examples. Very empowering.”

Want to know more? Head for Amazon.

The Verbally Abusive Relationship by Patricia Evans

Drawing from hundreds of real situations suffered by real people just like you, Evans offers strategies, sample scripts, and action plans designed to help you deal with the abuse—and the abuser.

Want to know more? Head for Amazon.

The Four AgreementsThe Four Agreements
by Don Miguel Ruiz

Another book that was recommended by a follower. Not specific to recovery or abuse, but an empowering book all the same.

“Rooted in traditional Toltec wisdom beliefs, four agreements in life are essential steps on the path to personal freedom. As beliefs are transformed through maintaining these agreements, shamanic teacher and healer Don Miguel Ruiz asserts lives will “become filled with grace, peace, and unconditional love.”

Want to know more? Head for Amazon.

The Confident Woman Devotional by Joyce Meyer

This book from the Christian tradition talks about the way that our society has an insecurity epidemic; affecting women in particular. Compensating by pretending to be secure, a common response, only leads to feelings of shame. Lack of self-confidence causes great difficulty in relationships of all kinds, and in marriage instances can even lead to divorce.

Want to know more? Head for Amazon.

Children of the Self-AbsorbedChildren of the Self-Absorbed
by Nina W Brown EdD LPC

I am a trail mix reader. At least when it comes to self-improvement and healing books. This is one of my favorite ones to tuck into, and I have referenced it on the site before.

“Being a parent is usually all about giving of yourself to foster your child’s growth and development. But what happens when this isn’t the case? Some parents dismiss the needs of their children, asserting their own instead, demanding attention and reassurance from even very young children. This may especially be the case when a parent has narcissistic tendencies or narcissistic personality disorder”.

Want to know more? Head for Amazon.

Scared Silent by Mildred Muhammad

“I recommend Mildred’s book because she tells the story of what we all experience with no-scar abuse”, Aubery Cole

“D.C. Sniper” John Muhammad’s ex breaks her silence about the domestic violence she suffered during their marriage, and the tragic events that occurred after their divorce—which led up to the October 2002 sniper killings in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area.

Want to know more? Head for Amazon.

The Empathy TrapThe Empathy Trap (or The Sociopath at the Breakfast Table) by  Dr Jane McGregor and Tim McGregor

Aubrey says, “I can’t recommend The Empathy Trap enough. It was the first book that tapped my logic center and spoke to me in that way.”

If you’re in a relationship where you’re always in the wrong, and emotional chaos is the norm, the chances are you’re with a sociopath—someone without a conscience. Someone whose personality shows extreme antisocial tendencies. Drawing on real-life cases and the latest international studies, The Empathy Trap: Understanding Antisocial Personalities alerts you to the ruses and lies of sociopaths, and looks at how you can protect yourself against these arch-manipulators.

Want to know more? Head for Amazon.

Coercive Control Dr. Evan Stark

Maybe a bit clinical, but Aubrey loved it and felt empowered by it.

Coercive Control breaks through entrenched views of physical abuse that have ultimately failed to protect women. Evan Stark, founder of one of America’s first battered women’s shelters, shows how “domestic violence” is neither primarily domestic nor necessarily violent, but a pattern of controlling behaviors more akin to terrorism and hostage-taking.

Want to know more? Head for Amazon.

Heal Your PTSDHeal Your PTSD by Michelle Rosenthal

For a long time I didn’t think I could ever be happy or feel good, either. But that’s the exciting thing about PTSD: You never know how, when, or in what ways you will make recovery gains. And when you do the surprise is deep, meaningful, and invigorating. All of which is why we have to keep slogging through the muck day after day. You just don’t know which day will be the one that starts to crack the code to your recovery.

Want to know more? Here is Michelle’s Website

Getting the Love You Want by Dr. Harville Hendrix

Aubrey did this one while still married to her toxic ex, but revisited it to get a better grasp on her core self after starting to recover.

Originally published in 1988, Getting the Love You Want has helped millions of couples attain more loving, supportive, and deeply satisfying relationships.

Want to know more? Head for Amazon.



Having gained experience while working for a variety of European non-profits, I am proud to now work with SwanWaters. My connection with the website is not only professional. I am glad to tap into my personal experiences to help those who are living in toxic relationships whether with parents, partners or in their professional life. We need to make the world more aware of the devastating effects of emotional abuse and help more people on their way to heal and thrive.

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