About the book: (from the publisher) After a devastating breakup, many people are left heartbroken, lonely, confused, even devoid of hope. Science proves that the grief of losing a romantic partner is similar to grieving a loved one’s death. Yet, too often, friends, family, and church leaders see these breakups as trivial events. So how do we find our way through the uncharted territory of deep grief?
As a therapist and ordained pastor, Mark Karris sees the devastation of heartbreak every day. He’s experienced the anguish of heartbreak himself and he knows that the pain is anything but trivial.
Drawing from cutting-edge neuroscience and liberating spiritual wisdom, Season of Heartbreak moves past platitudes and into action, offering hope for true recovery. Mark pulls from a variety of spiritual practices, including contemplative prayer, journaling, self-compassion, an original four-step transformational practice, and much more. Case studies from real clients prove that it is possible to move past the shame, anger, and hurt–and into secure relationships with God, our community, and ourselves.
Mark writes in a compelling, creative, and compassionate style perfect for a right-brained, metaphor-hungry, and spiritually thirsty generation. Optimistic but never condescending, this is an invaluable guidebook to a healthy, healing grief process.
About the author: Mark Gregory Karris is a licensed marriage and family therapist, ordained pastor, husband, writer, recording artist, and worship leader. He’s a voracious reader, researcher and all around biophilic. He and his wife live in San Diego, California.
Genre: Non-fiction/Christian Life/Spiritual Growth/RelationshipsHelp for those enduring the breakup of a romantic relationship. @KregelBooks Click To Tweet
My take: We all experience heartache at one point or another. In those times, feelings of aloneness add to the pain. Conversely, having someone draw alongside us in our pain — especially one who is not only an expert on the subject but experienced in it as well — brings the best kind of comfort. This is the goodness of what the author offers in this book. Both expertise and experience. There’s no question he’s been there. The stories he tells — both of his own experience and drawing from his connection with others as a counselor — break the myth that anyone is alone in her pain.
For all of that, this book was a miss for me — not for its content, which is thorough and relevant, but for its relatability. Perhaps it’s meant for people far younger and less experienced than myself. If so, my evaluation may be unfair. It really came down to tone and approach. To give a small example of how it missed my mark, this is a bit in which he explains how emotional pain actually triggers the same areas of the brain as physical pain, and may be therefore eased in the same way by a pain-reliever. Here’s how he introduces it:
“Have you ever taken acetaminophen? I bet you have. Another name for it is Tylenol.”
It’s hard for me to imagine anyone reading this book as not knowing what acetaminophen is, and the unfortunate impression it gave me was of the author talking down to his audience. Which I know was not his intention, but that’s how it struck me.
If readers are able to look past a little flat-footedness, I will say the author’s thorough dissection of heartbreak and how to move into, through, and out of the pain will likely provide welcome balm for those who need it most.
Thanks to Kregel Publications for providing me this book free of charge. All opinions are mine.