Books that Heal

Stories are a great way to help a teen heal from a past abuse, hurt or other

condition/issue from the list below. Inspirational teen fiction provides springboard for

teens to discuss their problems as well as giving them characters facing the

same issues that they do. As an author of young adult books, that is my goal.

Professional organizations organize mental health challenges into eight categories:

  • anxiety disorders,

  • mood disorders,

  • psychotic disorders,

  • eating disorders,

  • impulse control and addiction,

  • personality disorders,

  • obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD),

  • post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

If you don't think that our teens are affected by the above disorders, here's the research from a NIMH report on teens:

  • 11 percent reported being severely impaired by a mood disorder
    (e.g., depression or bipolar disorder);

  • 10 percent reported being severely impaired by a behavior disorder,
    such as attention deficit hyperactivity or conduct disorder;

  • 8 percent reported being severely impaired by at least one type of anxiety disorder;

  • and about 40 percent of those who reported having a disorder also met criteria
    for having at least one more.

     A teen could be dealing with one or more of these issues without anyone realizing. And even the teen may not realize what is going on or be able to put a name on it, he only knows that something is wrong. He is different. His feelings are off. Others shy away from him. He is labeled with any number of labels.

    Even if it's suspected that a teen is dealing with issues that fall under one or more of these categories, it's often hard to know how to approach the subject. That's when books, paired with appropriate therapy, can help. Rarely would a teen fiction book alone be all that the reader needs. But the story may be the thing that encourages the teen to talk about what is going on and to seek help.

     Stories are powerful, and they may help by:

  • Showing the reader he isn't alone in his feelings.

  • Providing a springboard for discussion.

  • Helping the teen verbalize what he is feeling.

  • Showing a resolution to the problem.

It's important to choose positive, inspirational fiction for the reader. Suggestions are being added on additional pages as I discover books that offer hope and healing for today's teens.