Thursday, September 13, 2012

Book Review of When Someone You Love Has a Chronic Illness

Book Review of When Someone You Love Has a Chronic Illness
 Sponsored by Nurture Your Books

Welcome to Books, Books, and More Books.  I am pleased to share my review of this book with you.  Thank you for visiting and please come again.

When Someone You Love Has a Chronic Illness: 

Hope and Help for Those Providing Support

  • Publisher: Cedar Fort, Inc. (February 14, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1599559390

Blurb : 

Dr. Tamara Greenberg offers hope and practical advice to those impacted by a loved one’s chronic illness. Providing easy-to-understand explanations for complicated feelings and behaviors, this book will help you not just cope, but thrive in your day-to-day life. Learn the important tools you need to help lighten the burden we all feel when someone we love is ill.

About the Author:

Tamara McClintock Greenberg, PsyD, MS is a licensed clinical psychologist (PSY16206) in San Francisco.
As an Associate Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at the University of California, San Francisco, Tamara's writing has focused on health psychology, psychoanalytic psychology, and coping with illness. She supervises and teaches in the San Francisco Bay Area on topics such as the culture of Western Medicine, psychotherapy, psychoanalytic psychotherapy, and medical consultation. She is the author of The Psychological Impact of Acute and Chronic Illness: A Practical Guide for Primary Care Physicians (Springer 2007) and was a contributor to the Praeger Publication, Whole Person Healthcare (2007). More recent books include Psychodynamic Perspectives on Aging and Illness (Springer 2009) and When Someone You Love Has a Chronic Illness (Cedar Fort, 2012). Her website is

Author Guest Post:

Are there any books that have played a major role in influencing your life and/or writing?
I wish I could say that there was one book that has shaped my life and writing.  Rather, I feel like I am a product of everything that I have read.  I am definitely moved by novels and so the authors who have influenced me most are those who write outside of my field. Don’t get me wrong; there are many psychologists and psychoanalysts who have influenced my thinking.  It is just that novelists have always captured my attention more than anyone in my field. As clinicians, we are limited in what we can actually say about our work.  Our need to protect patients is the number one priority.  As such, what is presented in professional articles has to be disguised.  Novelists do not need to have the same boundaries, as characters are made up.  Therefore, I think fiction offers some of the best and most accurate portraits of character and dysfunction.  Because of this safety, fictional novels are something we can all identify with, and in a way that is not too threatening. 

I am in love with literary fiction and the protection it offers from the reality of patient lives. Yet, good fiction captures realities that can never be produced in nonfiction writing. For me, the best fiction writers capture psychological concepts in a way that most psychological texts fail to do.  Carol Shields in The Stone Diaries describes repression in a way that is both chilling and poignant.  I find Zadie Smith to be brilliant in everything she writes, but in On Beauty she captures some painful realities about middle age, but also so much more about race and class.  And then there is Jonathan Frazen, who really understands family dysfunction in all of its strange complexities.  Freedom really captured for me important realities about those growing up in the Midwest, and reminded me of some of my best friends from high school. Finally, I don’t know much about Kevin Wilson, but The Family Fang is one of the best books I have read all year.  It is a great study in the narcissism of parents, and it helped me to understand the perverse relationship some people have with their children—some parents really expect kids to perform for them all of the time. 

Although I have learned a lot from psychological books and articles, it really is literary fiction that keeps me inspired.  Good novelists can do things that we psychologists cannot do in terms of describing human characters. 

Book Review:

            This book contains a lot of great information that anyone can use to help them find ways to cope with the stress of having a loved one who is suffering from a chronic or terminal disease.  It is filled with tips on everything  from how to handle talking to friend or taking care of yourself if you are a care-giver for someone who has a chronic illness.

            As someone who has a chronic illness, I found the information to be accurate and helpful in knowing what my friends and family are going through.  As a caregiver, it is a good reminder that I have to take care of myself to be any good for my family members.

            I was very impressed with the knowledge and accuracy of the information.  The book was straight forward and had a clean approach.  However, as with all self-help type books it could be dry and very clinical in approach.  Even so I will be recommending to all my friends and family.  I give this book a solid 5 out of 5 clouds.

This product or book may have been distributed for review; this in no way affects my opinions or reviews.

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