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Healing the Wounded Heart: The Heartache of Sexual Abuse and the Hope of Transformation

4.36  ·  Rating details ·  138 Ratings  ·  19 Reviews
First published in 1989, Dan Allender's "The Wounded Heart "has helped hundreds of thousands of people come to terms with sexual abuse in their past. Now, more than twenty-five years later, Allender has written a brand-new book on the subject that takes into account recent discoveries about the lasting physical, emotional, relational, and spiritual ramifications of sexual ...more
Paperback, 288 pages
Published March 1st 2016 by Baker Books
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Jim B
Feb 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: nonfiction, self-help
Healing the Wounded Heart is written by a professional therapist (his own clinic) who includes the spiritual in his therapy. He is unapologetically Christian. This is not a simplistic, "pray and your problems will go away" book on sexual abuse. In fact, I would say that psychology dominates the book and theology plays a secondary role -- almost a "I suggest you also consider that this is going on" approach. Allender sees the forces of evil at work, trying to destroy good and our enjoyment of goo ...more
Angie Fehl
Mar 09, 2016 rated it liked it

25 years ago, Dr. Dan Allender first published The Wounded Heart. This year he returns with Healing The Wounded Heart, which offers Christianity-based thoughts and recommendations for how to successfully come out on the other side of traumas. While the focus in this book is on sexual abuse, Allender does also get into the damage that tends to follow physical and emotional traumas as well. While there have been stacks of books written on the topic, what helps the reader lean into this one is Alle
Apr 07, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: for-reviews
This is the first book I have read as a help book for victims of sexual abuse. It was extremely insightful and educational. It is amazing the incredible number of people who have suffered, or maybe even are suffering abuse. There are many who don't even realized what they went through was abuse.

The first part of the book was honestly a bit overwhelming. It was a sort of introduction to many aspects and forms of sexual abuse from things people would consider in consequential to very serious. At t
May 13, 2016 rated it really liked it
As a campus minister, sexual abuse is a reality that haunts the community I work with. I picked up Dan Allender’s Healing the Wounded Heart because I wanted to know something about this topic - how to help and meet students in their pain. I’m no counselor, and have no intention of becoming one, but when students open up about the pain and struggles in their lives, I want to have some equipping on how best to love, honor, and help them.

Healing the Wounded Heart does exactly that. It opened my eye
Jason Kanz
Mar 18, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2016
Dan Allender, author of many wonderful books, is perhaps best known for his book The Wounded Heart, first published over 20 years ago. The Wounded Heart was a compassionate and wise book about sexual abuse. Now, in 2016, he again shared his wisdom and compassion in Healing the Wounded Heart: The Heartache of Sexual Abuse and the Hope of Transformation (Baker, 2016).

Although the sin of sexual abuse is not new, Dr Allender writes at the outset of the new face of sexual abuse. Increased "sexual lib
Aug 06, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I chose this book because I had a phone call several months ago where someone very close to me told me she was raped at the innocent age of seven. She said the prequel of this book was recommended to her by her counselor and she wanted me to read it. While the circumstances of this young woman's assault are not the main focus of either book, there is good information in both books.

Dan Allender explains in Healing the Wounded Heart that he was sexually abused as a child. In fact, many more peopl
Jan 31, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Just finished reading, “Healing the Wounded Heart,” by Dan B. Allender. It is arguably the most valuable use of time and piece of work that I have encountered in a very long time. Throughout the reading; and particularly at the end, I am ready to start a movement, mount a horse and rope a bull (!!), tear out a garden and raise it, and once again reaffirm my allegiance –that “God; how-so, when and whatever, have thy way in me.” But for the next few hours, I begin the workbook for Healing the Woun ...more
Feb 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Perfect resource for those who want to better under the pervasive impact sexual abuse has on the individual, on the family, and on society; while also understanding the spiritual dynamics at work and the path forward to true healing. It's an ideal resource for those involved in leadership in any sphere as it will help you formulate a response to disclosed sexual abuse that will do good instead of harm. It's also useful for brokering a discussion on sexual abuse and the church's response in a man ...more
Elise Martin
Jul 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
This book has been such a blessing not only for me personally, but in my pursuit to better listen and help those who have been a victim of child abuse. I think this is really a great book to begin the healing process and for those close to survivors to read as well.
Liria Forsythe
Oct 28, 2017 rated it really liked it
This was good but I feel the author took too much away from his own story and approached the topic from a more professional stance. I appreciated his own journey was talked about, as survivors of abuse need to feel they aren't alone.
May 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This author goes where NO OTHER AUTHORS have gone (for me, at least) regarding the lifelong effects of past abuse. Highly recommend.
Mar 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mental-health
Very deep and eye-opening. I learned a lot, not only about sexual abuse, but about principles that can apply to helping someone who has gone through any type of family/childhood trauma.
Feb 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing
The back cover synopsis of the book states, "millions of people" have "suffered abuse in the form of rape, incest, molestation," and other forms. That statement is hard to grasp. It's hard because a million abuse survivors is unconscionable. However, I now know I do not stand alone. One of the aspects of being abused is shame, but another is the feeling that I'm all alone in this horror. Shame causes isolation and this exacerbates the alone feeling. In 2015, I finally acknowledged, and al
Jun 28, 2016 rated it it was amazing
For those that have read Allender’s first book you will love this one. I actually liked it much better.
Where the first one seemed a bit more textbook-like (although extremely good) this one speaks more to the heart, I believe.
Dr. Allender talks more about the evil in the abuse and how the enemy uses it to ruin us. He also talks more about varying levels of abuse. Also, side effects that we often don’t associate with our abuse.
Although it is difficult to read at times, because of the hurt that st
Oct 28, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This is an amazing work on describing the wounds of sexual abuse. It also gives helpful advice on how the victim can overcome the debilitating effects and how caregivers can support in the process. Hats off to an author who exposes his soul in the process.
Lindsay Walker
May 30, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

As always, Dan is truthful yet encouraging. He is able to connect how people are created in the image of God and the consequences that arise when Gods natural design is defiled.
Jun 16, 2016 rated it really liked it
This was the first book by Allender that I have read and I was curious. It was eye opening, powerful, and an excellent resource on the topic of sexual abuse.
Kendill Joyner
May 24, 2016 rated it really liked it
Received this book free from Good This was a great, inspirational book. I have sense passed it on to a friend who I knew could use it.
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Goodreads Librari...: Please add cover 2 12 Oct 29, 2015 07:36AM  
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Dan B. Allender, Ph.D, is a fly fisherman who also serves as president and professor of counseling at Mars Hill Graduate School near Seattle, Washington. He is a therapist in private practice, and a frequent speaker and seminar leader. Dan received his M.Div. from Westminster Theological Seminary and his Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from Michigan State University. He is the author of To Be Told: ...more
“Hope refuses to believe that the inevitable is so. What has always been and can’t change is an illusion; if anything is true, it is that change is inevitable, not that the inevitable will not change. But evil caustically replies, Nonsense. It is what it is. You will only be more discouraged and frustrated until you accept reality.” 2 likes
“How do we hold the paradox of giving up our life in order to find it? I believe Chesterton is saying that the more we open our heart to both heartache and hope, the more we can look death in the face and say, “Where is your sting?” (1 Cor. 15:55). We must love all that bears the mark of life: the sound of an owl finch and its call that sounds like the meowing of a kitten. We must love Bach, Ethiopian berbere, and the smell of freshly baked bread. Life is teeming with goodness. We must also experience death and powerlessness, but darkness will not win. Life and love will have the final word.” 1 likes
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