Good Morning, Monster: A Therapist Shares Five Heroic Stories of Emotional Recovery | Catherine Gildiner
Catherine Gildiner Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Medical Psychotherapy TA & NLP Medical Clinical Psychology Clinical Psychology Counselling & Psychology Essays Biographies of Medical Professionals Medical General Psychology New York Times Bestselling Author Good Morning America's Favorite Books of 2020 Amazon Best Book of September 2020
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As seen on Good Morning America's SEPTEMBER 2020 READING LIST and FAVORITE BOOKS OF 2020!
"We need to read stories about folks who have been through hell and kept going... Fascinating." ―Glennon Doyle, A Favorite Book of 2020 on Good Morning America
"Gildiner is nothing short of masterful―as both a therapist and writer. In these pages, she has gorgeously captured both the privilege of being given access to the inner chambers of people's lives, and the meaning that comes from watching them grow into the selves they were meant to be." ―Lori Gottlieb, New York Times bestselling author of Maybe You Should Talk to Someone
In this fascinating narrative, therapist Catherine Gildiner’s presents five of what she calls her most heroic and memorable patients. Among them: a successful, first generation Chinese immigrant musician suffering sexual dysfunction; a young woman whose father abandoned her at age nine with her younger siblings in an isolated cottage in the depth of winter; and a glamorous workaholic whose narcissistic, negligent mother greeted her each morning of her childhood with "Good morning, Monster."
Each patient presents a mystery, one that will only be unpacked over years. They seek Gildiner's help to overcome an immediate challenge in their lives, but discover that the source of their suffering has been long buried.
As in such recent classics as The Glass Castle and Educated, each patient embodies self-reflection, stoicism, perseverance, and forgiveness as they work unflinchingly to face the truth. Gildiner's account of her journeys with them is moving, insightful, and sometimes very funny. Good Morning Monster offers an almost novelistic, behind-the-scenes look into the therapist's office, illustrating how the process can heal even the most unimaginable wounds.
An Amazon Best Book of September 2020: In reviewing her long career as a therapist, Dr. Catherine Gildiner was struck by the strength of spirit of her patients who struggled through each day despite being broken so many times by those who should have loved them. As Gildiner tells one of her patients, “To me, bravery isn’t a single act; it’s facing impossible odds every day to repeat the whole ordeal.” Throughout, Gildiner is filled with conviction and empathy for those she works with—making it easy to become utterly absorbed by their lives and her place in them. Among the five fascinating people Gildiner spotlights are a woman abandoned at age nine in a remote cabin, a man raised in one of Canada’s notorious residential schools for Indigenous children, and a woman whose father was an active member of the Ted Bundy fan club. (With the latter patient, Gildiner learns that the usual therapeutic processes for trauma won’t work: “some experiences are too hard to live through twice.”) Gildiner’s compassion shines from every page without being mawkish, even as she calls herself out on her own blind spots or the moments in therapy when she says the exact wrong thing. To Gildiner, these patients are heroes, and as you sit beside her while she learns of their lives and helps them with their recovery, you’ll soon be in awe of the strength inside them, too. —Adrian Liang, Amazon Book Review
ONE OF Newsweek's 30 THOUGHTFUL BOOKS TO GIFT
"Both wrenching and hopeful." ―Newsweek
"For fans of Lori Gottlieb... a therapist recounts five of her most fascinating patients, with a focus on how heroic they are for overcoming seemingly insurmountable obstacles." ―Business Insider
"Affecting... Insightful psychological lessons of special interest to readers on therapeutic journeys of their own." ―Kirkus
"Heart-wrenching stories... [that] inspire awe for the ways people who suffered horrific abuse were able to find a measure of recovery." ―Publisher's Weekly
"A fascinating memoir...heartwarming, heartbreaking, and inspirational." ―Midwest Book Review
"Although this book centers on the healing of Gildiner’s patients, it is also about her own gifts and growth as a therapist... Hats off to Gildiner for doing a heroic therapeutic job and for writing about it so eloquently." ―New York Journal
“Gildiner’s subject is heroism―writ large and with poignant specificity in five unforgettable patients’ lives. Good Morning, Monster will bolster your faith in human endurance, and make you root more fiercely for us all.“ ―Paula McLain, author of Love and Ruin and The Paris Wife
"These stories show how the process of therapy can heal even the deepest wound and most traumatic of experiences." ―Lee Woodruff
"Allows one the privilege of seeing the therapist-patient relationship as an essentially human interaction." ―JM Coetzee, Winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature
“Enthusiastic and insightful” ―Toronto Star
"As anyone who has sat through a Zoom therapy session knows, there's really no substitute for the real thing. But, the book world is giving it a shot... Good Morning, Monster by Catherine Gildiner is a psychologist's retelling of five of her most memorable (and harrowing) cases." ―Entertainment Weekly
"Brilliant piece of work, both heart-rending and chilling. I was moved to tears... a great book for any time. I had promised myself that I would read one episode for each of five days. Instead I read right through from beginning to end." ―Valery Hemingway, author of Running With the Bulls
“Like Oliver Sacks, Catherine Gildiner loves her patients... Gildiner is a master of shoot-from-the-hip nonfiction―funny, direct and honest about what she sees in others and what she sees in herself. Highly readable!” ―Susan Swan, author of The Wives of Bath
“Gildiner is astute, active, pragmatic, and hopeful. She is also very funny. Her wit and her wisdom are gifts shared with these five people―and now with all of us readers." ―David S. Goldbloom, co-author of How Can I Help?: A week in My Life as a Psychiatrist
“These stories are almost mythic in their power... I couldn’t put this book down.” ―Antanas Sileika, author of Provisionally Yours
“Compelling, heart-in-throat stories prove no one is ‘damaged goods.’ I’m in awe of the five patients and of Gildiner’s exceptional creativity as she guides each one toward emotional freedom.” ―Rona Maynard, author of My Mother’s Daughter
About the Author
CATHERINE GILDINER was a clinical psychologist in private practice for twenty-five years. Her best-selling memoir Too Close to The Falls was published to international acclaim. She lives in Toronto.