Fear of the Abyss: Healing the Wounds of Shame & Perfectionism
by Aleta Edwards, Psy.D.
Most self-help or personal growth books help their readers learn to “cope” better with one specific problem that troubles them. In contrast, Fear of the Abyss offers healing for a wounded core by providing guidance to those with a certain constellation of issues, which Dr. Edwards calls the “PCS” personality. While perfectionism, control, and shame may be the issues that readers most easily relate to, they form part of a pattern that also includes such issues as rigidity, black-and-white thinking, indecisiveness, and relationship difficulties caused by a need to be needed.
Dr. Edwards sees this entire constellation as rooted in a core fear that varies from person to person. It is the object of this fear that she calls the “abyss.” Through a series of clinical vignettes drawn from her own experience as well as exercises accompanying most chapters, she helps the reader develop self-awareness and compassion for him- or herself, as well as a greater sense of authenticity.
“This book is a true gift. Aleta Edwards is … a genius in simplifying how to get to the root of the issues that trouble us – how to embrace the shadow and transcend to love, compassion, and honor. Fear of the Abyss is a must read for every psychotherapist, not to mention anyone who suffers from shame and perfectionism – which I’d say is most if not all all of us.” –Lisa Ortigara Crego, PhD, LCSW, CEDS, CAP, NBCCH, Clinical Psychotherapist, Doctor of Addictions Psychology, Nat. Bd. Cert. Hypnotherapist
“In this engaging book, Dr. Aleta Edwards sheds new light on the issues of perfectionism, control, and shame. Breaking from the traditional model of diagnosis, she explains the role of trauma as a major factor in the development of the ‘PCS’ personality and emphasizes the adaptive nature of these issues. This book is recommended for its thoughtful text and helpful exercises, as well as the spirit of hope.” –Nina Savelle-Rocklin, PsyD, Psychoanalyst, award-winning writer of the “Make Peace with Food” blog and host of the “Win the Diet War” podcast
“This is a great book for individuals who struggle with shame and perfectionism. I’ve recommended it to several clients and they have found it very helpful. I believe this book is a good tool as an addition to therapy or by itself as a self-help book.” –Ana Maria Aluisy, MA, LMFT, LMHC, CRC, relationship specialist, featured on CNN Latino, Super Q Radio and ESPN Deportes Radio
2016, 208 pages