Let The Healing Begin!
Dr. Singleton prefaces the novel,
Broken Silence, by quoting an axiom from a t-shirt she once saw: "Being a Black Woman Is One of the Hardest Jobs in the World." She
comments that this maxim has proven itself true as evidenced in the lives of her clients. Too
often women of color hide behind walls of silence (with disastrous consequences), only turning to therapy when the burdens
become too heavy to bear. I loved the way the author substantiated this point
by citing the historical silent suffering experienced by African American slaves as fodder for pain; how religion is repeatedly
viewed as the only means of relief; and how the silent suffering is still deeply rooted in the modern African American
The middle portion of the book contains
eight success stories of black women who have benefited from therapy. Each woman
has different types of issues ranging from emotional and sexual abuse, relationship issues, and self-respect/identity problems. Dr. Singleton introduces each
story with care and compassion. Her objectivity, presentation of the issues,
and counsel to her patients are helpful, sound, and sensible. She has simplified
highly complex problems which allow the reader to easily empathize and learn from the lessons of others. My only comment here is she might have over-simplified a bit too much, but her advice and strategies to
minimize stress and encourage her clients are wonderful.
I think this book is an excellent resource
for women, especially black women, who need to know that they are not alone in their experiences with abuse, failed relationships,
and/or career disappointments. It also provides clear explanations and warning
signs along with practical suggestions and exercises for healthier living. It
demonstrates that personal change is possible and helps women realize that if they choose to overcome the cultural stigma of therapy, they will find the support, comfort,
relief, and balance needed to let the healing begin.
The Nubian Circle Book
Club rating for Broken Silence: Black Women in Therapy
is 3.5 of 5 stars. Please e-mail us at this address: NubianCircleClub@aol.com.