Useful Books about PTSD

“Many thanks must go here to a very good friend of mine, who prompted me to include this page and provided me with some of the material.”

(More titles will be added as I source them)

Outside of research journals there is little material on military veterans with PTSD from a UK perspective. However, there is a considerable amount of such material relating to the US experience, particularly Vietnam. Do not let the US slant put you off reading this material. Although details of experience will be different, and information such as where to get help will be irrelevant to the UK reader, the core information on PTSD, treatments and hints on how to cope do apply.

Unless specified these books can easily be ordered through your local library, book shop or

For Queen and Country THEN WHAT?

‘For Queen and Country, Then What?’

Author: Andrew Murphy

Published by Loxwood Press in 2009. (Initially this will be available via Amazon only)

This is my first published book and I hope will help other veterans suffering form PTSD or their families understand more about PTSD. This is not a novel but a serious book that uses all my own experiences and issues, in an open and honest account of how PTSD affected me, how I have managed to learn more about the ‘new me’ and living with PTSD. You are not Mad or alone and I hope this book will help you get the help you need to have a good quality of life, living with PTSD.

EFT for PTSD (EFT: Emotional Freedom Techniques)

Author: Gary Craig

Published by Energy Psychology Press February 2010. (Available via Amazon)

Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a terrible burden to bear. It not only affects people psychologically, robbing them of peace of mind and inner tranquillity; it damages them physically. Traumatic stress can result from negative emotional experiences during childhood. It can also arise in adults as a result of war, assault, or similarly traumatic experiences. Some of the symptoms of PTSD are: Insomnia; Digestive disorders; Flashbacks and nightmares; Irritability, jumpiness, being easily triggered by events; Rage, grief and guilt; Anxiety, panic attacks, depression; and Feeling isolated and unsafe. If you or someone you know has these symptoms, “EFT” can help. In scientific studies of war veterans and other traumatised groups, EFT has been shown to reduce or eliminate PTSD, sometimes in just a few short sessions. Not only do PTSD sufferers experience immediate relief, but the positive results extend long after treatment. This manual is a lifeline for those suffering from PTSD and their families. It also contains special sections that gather together the experience of many physicians, psychotherapists, social workers and coaches who have used EFT.

The following four books are by Frank Parkinson, a C of E clergyman since 1962 who trained as a counselor with Relate and served as an army chaplain for 25 years.

Since leaving the army in 1992, after a senior appointment, he has worked as a trainer, consultant and counselor with people from many different kinds of incidents from major disasters such as the Manchester Prison Riots, Baltic Exchange Bombing, East Midlands’ Air-crash and the bombing of the US Embassy in Nairobi to experiences of war and combat, rape, hostage situations, traffic accidents, murder, armed robbery, mugging and assaults and with Building Society and Aid Agency personnel.

He has worked in education and training with the Emergency Services, County Educational Psychology, Social Services and Emergency Planning departments and lectured at Birmingham, Bristol, Gloucester and Oxford Brookes universities and at Cranfield University where he is a Visiting Fellow. He is also a professional member of the British Association for Counseling and Psychotherapy. He was involved in giving evidence in the unsuccessful case taken up by ex-service personnel against the MOD.

Post-Trauma Stress

Author: Frank Parkinson.

Published by Sheldon Press, Fisher Books and other publishers in the USA and Germany.

This book, first published in 1993, looks at Post-Traumatic Stress following involvement in many different kinds of traumatic incidents and throughout the book gives first-hand examples of personal experiences. It also looks at the connection between loss, bereavement and reactions to other cases of traumatic stress and at the process of Psychological (Critical Incident) Debriefing as understood at the time.

Coping with Post-Trauma Stress

Author: Frank Parkinson.

Published by Sheldon Press in 2000 – now out of print but available from author – see below.

This is a simple, practical, self-help handbook, written after the Paddington train crash, for anyone suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress or for those who live or work with them. It outlines the symptoms of PTS and PTSD and gives guidelines for coping and for helping those who suffer. The book is now out of print but can be obtained from: Frank Parkinson, 9 Priory Mead, Longcot, Faringdon Oxon SN7 7TJ – Tel; 01793 784406 and cost £5.00 which include post and packing and a donation to Combat Stress.

Critical Incident Debriefing

Author: Frank Parkinson.

Published by Souvenir Press.

The book outlines the experiences of Post-Traumatic Stress and PTSD and why they might occur but also explains the process of Psychological and Critical Incident Debriefing following the work of Dr Jeffrey Mitchell in the USA and Dr Atlé Dyregrov from Norway. It gives clear examples of personal experiences and of the Debriefing process.

Listening and Helping in the Workplace

Author: Frank Parkinson.

Published by Souvenir Press.

This book is for those who wish to understand the problems and reactions associated with Stress, Post-Traumatic Stress, Bereavement, Bullying and Redundancy and looks at these topics followed by outlining in detail simple listening and helping skills such as Prompting, Mirroring, Paraphrasing, Reflecting, Summarising and Asking questions. These skills can be adapted and used by those who act in positions of responsibility, such as line-managers, but can also be used by non-professionals in listening to and helping others.

Author: John Barnhill & R.K. Rosen (1999)

Dell Publishing: New York. [ISBN 0-440-23464-6]

This cheap paperback is a comprehensive, lay-man terms book that concisely covers a huge array of information and areas relating to PTSD. The chapters range from ‘What is PTSD?’ through ‘Feelings associated with PTSD’ and on to Treatment Options’ plus ‘How Therapy is Applied’. If you a seeking information on PTSD but are working to a limited budget, or don’t wish to wade through heavy science, then this book is the best place to start.

The Body Remembers: The psychophysiology of Trauma and Trauma Treatment.

Author: Babette Rothschild (2000)

W.W. Norton: New York. [ISBN 0-393-70327-4]

Few books discuss it, and few mental health professionals address it directly, but recent research indicates that PTSD is not simply ‘in the mind’. With particular attention being paid to the neurobiology of the traumatic memory, this book attempts to address the physical aspects of PTSD in a reader friendly manner that avoids the heavier language of scientific research.

[Note for UK readers: professionally Babbette, an experienced trauma therapists, is accredited as a Master of Social Work [MSW] in the USA. This is a normal accreditation for psychotherapists and clinical psychologists in the US, and the MSW should not be confused a Social Worker as we know them in the UK]

Vietnam Wives: Facing the challenges of life with veterans suffering Post-Traumatic Stress

Author: Aphrodite Matsakis (1996)

[2nd. Edition]. Sidran Press: Lutherville, Maryland. [ISBN 1-886968-00-4]

Trust After Trauma: a guide to relationships for survivors and those who love them.

Author: Aphrodite Matsakis (1998)

New Harbinger Publications: Oakland, California. [ISBN 1-57224-101-2]

Aphrodite, an accredited psychologist specialising in PTSD, is the clinical coordinator for the Veteran’s Outreach Center in Silver Spring, Maryland. The first of her books, ‘Vietnam Wives’ is aimed at the veteran’s partner, and includes valuable information and hints to help cope with all aspects of living with a veteran with PTSD. With similarly good advice, and aimed both at the veteran themselves and all those who may care about them, the second book ‘Trust after Trauma’ addresses and hints at coping strategies for broader family and social relationship issues.

Recovering From The War: a guide for all veterans, family members, friends and therapists.

Author: Patience H.C Mason (1998)

Patincepress, Florida.

This book is another guide to PTSD and relationships for the wives of veterans with PTSD. Patience, unlike most other authors, writes from a unique position. Not only is she a qualified psychotherapist professionally dealing with PTSD, she is also the wife of a former Vietnam helicopter pilot with PTSD veteran, Robert Mason, now more famous as the author of ‘Chicken hawk’.

Currently this book is only available on direct order from

A War of Nerves.

Author: Ben Shepard (2000)

Jonathan Cape: London [ISBN: 0-22406-033-3]

This book is essential, a history of military psychiatry in the 20th century that serves to put things in perspective, especially for UK readers. Essentially it is an examination of the changing views relating to the nature, cause, and treatment of those who suffered mentally as a result of warfare. The topics covered range from World War I “shell shock” to the psychological aftermath of Vietnam, individual limits of resistance, and the ethical dilemmas of army doctors. In part this book asks why, after almost a century of opportunity, of our knowledge of combat-related PTSD appears to be in it’s infancy. The answer presented is complex, but put simply, the evidence suggests that the role of the military psychiatrists is compromised by the fact that the armed forces have often looked to minimise the problem – all they want are personnel back on duty in the shortest possible time, and this whilst attempting to distance themselves from any responsibility in case they get hit by compensation claims.

PTSD A Self-Help Survival Guide.

Author: Stuart Welbourn (2011) London [ISBN: 978-1-4477-3872-5]

Stuart Welbourn worked as a Psychotherapist for 13 years after being medically discharged from the Royal Navy. In this book Stuart provides concise information on PTSD & various therapies which may be effective in its treatment. He includes a relaxation script created especially for this edition, & a guide to E.F.T. for the reader to use in the comfort of their own home, if they should choose to do so. There is also a Bonus section of 10 tips to improve your overall wellbeing, which are worth the price of the book alone.

You can find Stuarts book on Amazon

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