This powerful client workbook is written in an encouraging and easy-to-understand style specifically for women who have been sexually assaulted and have developed chronic symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Clients learn how cognitive-behavioral therapy has helped other victims and how it can work for them. This book explains how to distinguish PTSD symptoms from other disorders and teaches powerful techniques for overcoming these symptoms.
In writing this book, the authors aim to address two goals. First, they want to present information about PTSD and related problems in language understandable to nonprofessionals. This information will include a review of the studies on posttrauma problems and on the effectiveness of different treatments. They also describe why some survivors develop PTSD and others do not.
The second goal of the book is to provide a detailed client workbook for the treatment of trauma-related problems, especially PTSD, to assist clients working with a therapist. The authors are aware of the fact that people have different problems and different needs. What works for one person may not work for another. Therefore, they describe several different treatment techniques. The book is organized around the different cognitive-behavioral techniques that have been studied and proven effective with women sufferers of PTSD following an assault.
Throughout the book, the authors focus mainly on women who have been sexually assaulted and as a result developed chronic symptoms of PTSD, which have disturbed their daily functioning and cause them emotional distress. Most of the examples they use to demonstrate the cognitive-behavioral techniques are drawn from their experience in treating rape survivors. However, the cognitive-behavioral procedures outlined here have been as successful in helping women who have been sexually abused in childhood and adult female survivors of nonsexual assaults, like aggravated assault and robbery. Other survivors of traumas such as natural disasters and car accidents were also helped by this cognitive-behavioral approach.