Review by Shirley Tome

Living among us are people who are suffering incredible mental pain and anguish after going through catastrophic and life-changing events. In The Post Traumatic Stress Disorder Fallacy by H. Nattanya Andersen, the author deeply delves into her life during her struggles with PTSD and the fallacy the world has been led to believe about PTSD sufferers and the mental health industry.

The author is a former flight attendant. She suffered PTSD for a decade after a Boeing 727 engine exploded mid-air at 6000 feet altitude, just five feet away from her, escaping death by a whisker. She explains in great detail her journey to recovery in this book and the methods she used to improve her health. The author does not describe PTSD as a psychiatric disorder or mental illness, but rather, an existential crisis. There are tools the author describes to help PTSD journeyers come out of their suffering and help themselves, based off her own experiences. Although the author explicitly states that the book is not to be used as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment, she makes a very good case on how PTSD can be overcome.

Reading this book was quite an eye-opener for me. The author makes a compelling case about the fallacy of the mental health treatment process, while extensively discussing how a bonanza has been created in the mental health industry to profit off those suffering from PTSD and other mental health related issues. The book is quite voluminous and heavily referenced. As I continued to read, I was amazed at the author’s extensive and deep research she went into writing this book. The fact that this is the first book in a trilogy series clearly means that there is more to be said than what was already authored in The Post Traumatic Stress Disorder Fallacy.

I applaud the author for being very bold about those who have let down sufferers of PTSD. From ignorant, but well-meaning, family members and friends, to big corporations and organizations, the victims of PTSD have surrendered themselves to those who claim they can help them overcome PTSD. However, the author implies that it is not possible that those who have not gone through this existential crisis to claim that they can help those suffering from PTSD. What stood out for me as I was reading this book is that we as human beings have the incredible ability to heal ourselves, or what the author so much describes as “healing the Self.”

This is the type book to read when you want to see the world in a different light. The only negative thing I can say about the book is that it had quite a number of typographical errors, especially on some misspelled words and missing commas in some sentences. Therefore, I give this book a rating of 3 out 4 stars. Were it not for the errors, I would have given this book a perfect rating. I recommend it to anyone who may have gone through PTSD or anyone who knows someone who is going through PTSD. Adult readers can find this book a resourceful read so as to get some understanding of those struggling to cope with PTSD or any other mental issues.