In her professional life, Shary Hauer was a confident, successful, high-caliber executive coach who advised big-time corporate leaders around the globe—but her personal life was an entirely different matter. When it came to love, she was insecure, clingy, desperate, willing to do anything and everything to win and keep a man. Because without a man by her side, what good was she? In Insatiable, Hauer fearlessly chronicles her emotional journey from despair to hope, rejection to redemption, and self-hate to self-love, one man at a time. In candid detail, she relates what it is like to be trapped in the torturous cycle of love addiction—what it’s like to be forever searching, needing, obsessing, scheming, and agonizing for love, suffering from a hunger that never ceases—and what it takes to break free of that cycle. An intimate, soul-baring tale that sheds much-needed light on one of the least understood and talked about addictions, Insatiable is the story of one woman’s journey through the hellish, the humiliating, and the humbling in her single-minded pursuit of the most addictive drug of all: love.
We all tell ourselves stories about who we are. Many of these stories are self-critical and disempowering. Through the practice of self-compassion, we can rewrite these stories and become more authentic and powerful versions of ourselves—transforming not only our own lives but also the lives of those around us. In short and personal pieces, Marianne Ingheim tells the story of how the practice of self-compassion has changed her life in ways big and small, helping her unlearn harsh self-criticism, survive multiple tragedies, and live more authentically. In the wake of a breast cancer diagnosis and her husband’s suicide, she discovers the power of self-compassionate storytelling and finds belonging within herself—and in doing so, she learns how to manage anxiety and stress, how to be authentic in relationships, and how to let go of comparison and be truly creative. Through stories and journaling prompts, Out of Love: Finding Your Way Back to Self-Compassion aims to inspire readers to unlearn the self-critical patterns holding them hostage—and begin to live a happier, more courageous life.
For nearly fifty years, Sara Somers suffered from untreated food addiction. In this brutally honest and intimate memoir, Somers offers readers an inside view of a food addict’s mind, showcasing her experiences of obsessive cravings, compulsivity, and powerlessness regarding food. Saving Sara chronicles Somers’s addiction from childhood to adulthood, beginning with abnormal eating as a nine-year-old. As her addiction progresses in young adulthood, she becomes isolated, masking her shame and self-hatred with drugs and alcohol. Time and again, she rationalizes why this time will be different, only to have her physical cravings lead to ever-worse binges, to see her promises of doing things differently next time broken, and to experience the amnesia that she—like every addict—experiences when her obsession sets in again. Even after Somers is introduced to the solution that will eventually end up saving her, the strength of her addiction won’t allow her to accept her disease. Twenty-six more years pass until she finally crawls on hands and knees back to that solution, and learns to live life on life’s terms. A raw account of Somers’s decades-long journey, Saving Sara underscores the challenges faced by food addicts of any age—and the hope that exists for them all.
One Mother’s Journey Through Her Son’s Bipolar Illness and Addiction
Author: Meg McGuire
Publisher: She Writes Press
Category: Biography & Autobiography
One day a teenage boy gets on his bike and rides forty miles up California’s Pacific Coast Highway to avoid causing an earthquake he fears will endanger his mother and sister. But the quake he is experiencing is not coming from beneath the earth; it’s the onset of bipolar illness. Blinded by Hope describes what it’s like to have an unusually bright, creative child—and then to have that child suddenly be hit with an illness that defies description and cure. Over the years, McGuire attributes her son’s lost jobs, broken relationships, legal troubles, and periodic hospitalizations to the manic phase of his illness, denying the severity of his growing drug use—but ultimately, she has to face her own addiction to rescuing him, and to forge a path for herself toward acceptance, resilience, and love. A wakeup call about the epidemic of mental illness, substance abuse, and mass incarceration in our society, Blinded by Hope shines a light on the shadow of family dynamics that shame, ignorance, and stigma rarely let the public see, and asks the question: How does a mother cope when love is not enough?
How I Found the Courage to Lead with Love in Business and in Life
Author: Laila Tarraf
Publisher: She Writes Press
Category: Biography & Autobiography
Laila Tarraf was the Chief People Officer for Peet’s Coffee and Tea, the iconic Berkeley coffee roaster that launched the craft coffee movement in America, but she had a secret: she was failing in the most important relationships in her life. Yes, she was a strong and effective business leader, the successful daughter of immigrants, and the mother of a toddler; but she was also disconnected from her own feelings and had little patience for the feelings of others. All that changed when life handed her a trifecta of losses: her husband died of an accidental drug overdose, and her parents' deaths followed in quick succession. Laila had spent her life leading from the head, convinced that any display of vulnerability would make her soft. What she didn’t expect was that soft would turn out to be strong. As she reconnected to her heart, one painful step at a time, something remarkable happened: she became a better leader, a better mother, and a better person. Her heart turned out to be the true source of her power, at home and at work. This is a book about healing, about waking up, about learning who you are—who you really, truly are at the core—and reclaiming and embracing all the pieces of yourself you long ago abandoned in the name of survival. Women longing for balance will discover a path to infusing our leadership and relationships with love, compassion, and authenticity.
Women’s Romantic and Ridiculous Midlife Adventures
Author: Jodi Klein
Publisher: She Writes Press
Category: Family & Relationships
Ellen meets Jim at a posh restaurant, hoping for an evening of fine wine and better conversation. Maria sets out on a walk with a man she's been looking forward to meeting. In First Date Stories, these women, and others, enter into initial liaisons with well-honed expectations—and come out on the other side with extraordinary tales to tell. Chances are, every woman in her mid-thirties and over who is seeking a loving companion has a first date tale of triumph or disaster. Each of the candid and memorable stories Jodi Klein shares here imparts a bit of wisdom—with the help of takeaway tips and inspirational quotes—to guide readers through what can be a baffling, intimidating, and sometimes lonely journey. Before a promising first date, or after an awful one, First Date Stories offers readers the reminder that being single should be celebrated, that not all first dates are created equal, and that every initial encounter has the possibility to become something long-lasting and wonderful.
“This glorious story of a life lived in love is the perfect read because it is hilarious, honest, and full of hope. Brava!” —Adriana Trigiani, best-selling author of Tony’s Wife In this laughter-through-tears memoir, Sallie Weissinger, a late-in-life widow, recounts the highs and lows of navigating the tricky online dating world of the 2000s. Interwoven throughout her adventures in search of a new relationship are stories from her childhood as a military brat, her southern heritage, her various marriages, and the volunteer work in Central and South America that helped her keep moving forward through it all. Weissinger keeps her sense of humor as she meets men who lie, men who try to extort money, and men with unsavory pasts. When she experiences even more loss, her search for a partner becomes less important, but—with the help of friends and dogs—she perseveres and, ultimately, develops her own approach to meeting “HIM.” Blending the deeply serious and the lighthearted, Yes Again shows us that good things happen when we open up our minds and hearts.
As featured in MariaShriver.com * MindBodyGreen * BooksByWomen * Named “Spring Book Pick” by Redbook Magazine * POPSUGAR * Chico’s Inside Chic * San Francisco Book Review * Buzzfeed * The Berry In 1998, after having been married to Duncan―a bully who'd been controlling her for the fourteen years they'd been together―Karen E. Lee thought divorce was in the cards. But ten months after telling him that she wanted that divorce, Duncan was diagnosed with cancer―and eight months later, he was gone. Karen hoped her problems would be solved after Duncan's death―but instead, she found that, without his ranting, raving, and screaming taking up space in her life, she had her own demons to face. Luckily, Duncan had inadvertently left her the keys to her own salvation and healing―a love of Jungian psychology and a book that was to be her guide through the following years. In The Full Catastrophe, Karen explores Jungian analysis, the dreams she had during this period, the intuitive messages she learned to trust in order to heal, and her own emotional journey―including romances, travel adventures, and friends. Insightful and brutally honest, The Full Catastrophe is the story of a well educated, professional woman who, after marrying the wrong kind of man―twice―finally resurrects her life.
Melanie Gibson was an independent woman with a good job, multiple college degrees, and a condo in the trendy part of town. She also had a few mental illnesses, a minor substance abuse problem, and rotten relationship skills. She was a high-functioning crazy who needed a good kick in the pants, literally and metaphorically. In early 2013, as a last desperate means to save her sanity, Melanie turned to a nearly forgotten childhood activity: the Korean martial art of taekwondo. As if the universe were listening, she discovered her West Texas childhood taekwondo instructors’ Grandmaster operated a taekwondo school a few miles from her home in Fort Worth, Texas—and she decided to start her training over as a white belt. In taekwondo, Melanie felt like she had a fresh start in more ways than one. She found an inner peace she’d never known before, a sense of community, a newfound confidence, and a positive outlook on life. The kicking and screaming she was doing in class quieted the long-term kicking and screaming in her mind. Funny and frank, Kicking and Screaming: A Memoir of Madness and Marital Arts is the story of Melanie’s life-changing journey from troubled, lost soul to confident taekwondo black belt.
Shani Raviv is a misfit teen whose peer-pressured diet spirals down into full-blown anorexia nervosa—something no one in her early-nineties, local South African community knows anything about. Fourteen-year-old Shani spends the next six years being “Ana” (as many anorexics call it), on the run from her feelings. She goes from aerobics addict to Israeli soldier to rave bunny to wannabe reborn, using sex, drugs, exercise and, above all, starvation, to numb out everything along the way. But one night, at age twenty, Shani faces the rude awakening that if she doesn’t slow down, break her denial, and seek help, she will starve to death. Three years later, her hardest journey of all begins: the journey to let go of being Ana and learn to love herself. Being Ana is an exploration into the soul and psyche of a young woman wrestling with anorexia’s demons—one that not only exposes the real horrors of a day in the life of an anorexic girl but also reveals the courage it takes to stop fighting and find healing.