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Healing Your Hungry Heart: Review

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Joanna Poppink writes not only of the heart, but from the heart.  She has been there, and shares generously of her personal struggles with bulimia.  Her authenticity cannot be mistaken and gives her readers reason to be confident that she knows whereof she writes, and will not offer mere theory, nor platitudes, nor judgment.  This confidence does not prove mistaken.

 

She has also been there as a psychotherapist--a gifted and experienced therapist, a genuine healer.  This, too, comes through clearly in her book.  Through many examples, exercises, and distillations of her well-earned wisdom, the author gives hope and help to women who are struggling with the pain and shame of eating disorders.

 

Make no mistake:  this book offers no easy “fix.”  The author invites her readers to undertake an admittedly difficult and often intimidating exploration of self, of the hidden meanings of symptoms and actions.   She knows that one must “stay present and bear your feelings” to walk this path, and also knows how to extend help.  She knows and teaches that “everything counts.”  I imagine that most readers will find that they cannot work through this substantial book all at once, but will need to return to it again and again, sometimes with frustration but often, too, with joy.

 

 

Joan A. Lang, M.D.

Psychiatrist and Psychoanalyst

Professor Emeritus & Former Chair, Department of Psychiatry, Saint Louis University

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