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Women with Controlling Partners


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About the Author

Carol Lambert, MSW, is a psychotherapist and domestic violence expert with three decades of experience helping individuals, couples, and women. Since 1993, she has cofounded and facilitated recovery groups for women with controlling partners. At McLean Hospital, a psychiatric hospital affiliated with Harvard Medical School, she provides domestic violence consultation. She's currently in private clinical practice in Belmont and Concord, MA.


"An eye-opening exploration of how women become trapped in dysfunctional relationships with their angry and controlling partners. This is a gripping narrative that can lead women on a life-changing journey from denial to knowledge, from understanding to recovery. As a survivor of domestic abuse, I found this book true to my experience. It validated my pain, exposed the tactics of my controlling partner, and showed the way toward reclaiming my self-respect and autonomy. I recommend this book to anyone who has experienced domestic abuse, and to all those who care for them."
--Pamela, survivor of domestic abuse
"Lambert, a psychotherapist with over 30 years of domestic violence expertise, has written a guidebook for women who suspect their boyfriend or spouse's behavior is controlling. She explains in depth components of psychological abuse and how low self-esteem feeds into the pattern beginning with small exploits and continuing with controlling tactics and possible physical harm. Lambert depicts numerous scenarios and repeated behaviors that indicate abuse and affirms readers' rights to be treated with respect. She provides exercises for building strength and countering domineering tactics. A wealth of websites and battered-women hotlines are included in the appendixes. VERDICT: A poignant and necessary book for all women who live in fear in their own homes."
--Library Journal
"This book offers an important opportunity for the multitude of women who are in relationships that are controlling, but who do not resonate with the term 'intimate partner violence.' It presents straightforward information about the insidious consequences that can occur from being in a relationship with someone who is controlling, and the levels of harm that can occur over time that may not be obvious to the person herself. Through this book, the reader can receive support, clarity, and guidance from the thousands of women who Carol Lambert has listened to and has combined their collective wisdom and courage. Mental health clinicians can also benefit from this book in deepening their understanding of the complexities of these types of relationships and the importance of patience, collaboration with community resources, and the power of peer voices and support."
--Janet Yassen, LICSW, Acute Crime Crisis Services Coordinator of the Victims of Violence Program at the Cambridge Health Alliance, Harvard Medical School faculty, and cofounder of the Boston Area Rape Crisis Center
"Women with controlling partners don't merely suffer blows to their self-esteem and confidence; they also gradually and insidiously lose their sense of who they are. Deeply validating and brimming with practical advice and wisdom, Women with Controlling Partners guides readers through the often subtle process of psychological abuse, helping them escape the confusion and shame that enshroud their experience by offering a detailed road map back to themselves--and their lives. Their journey is made all the more reassuring by the rich voices of women who've traveled the exact same path in Lambert's recovery groups and arrived at their final destination--freedom--feeling deeply empowered."
--Craig Malkin, PhD, Harvard Medical School lecturer and author of the internationally acclaimed Rethinking Narcissism

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