Hello WIRTH Fam!
We are very excited to bring you this new program!
In our ongoing efforts to support our community with reshaping our relationship to mental health and provide support to as many people as we can, we are excited to launch the WIRTH Book Club.
Curated with a journey in mind, this selection of books begins with intimate, personal and transformative stories. From here, we’ll look into research and evidence-based practices that are changing the field of psychology. Then we’ll then touch upon a more transpersonal and philosophical perspective on something we all yearn for — love. Before wrapping up with a look at boundaries, — which supports virtually everything in the mental health sandbox.
A huge THANK YOU goes out to Sarah for volunteering her time and spearheading this!
The cost to join the WIRTH Book Club is a $25 donation towards the WIRTH Counselling Fund and to the WIRTH Book Scholarship Fund.
**If you cannot afford the registration cost or the cost of the books and still want to participate, please click this link and send us an email
- This is not a group-therapy setting, but instead a facilitated conversation about the books we’re reading in a non-judgmental and confidential space.
- Questions or prompts will be shared for each book, you are welcome to use them but also encouraged to bring your own questions, curiosities and insights to each discussion.
- The first discussion will be on Wed Sep 2nd from 6:00-7:30 pm PST.
- On-going, we meet the first Wednesday of each month via Zoom.
- Readers can pick and choose which books you’re most interested in, or read them all
- Guest speakers will occasionally join to help facilitate discussion about the content we’re covering.
- Zoom links and calendar invites will be sent to you once you register.
Our Host & Curator:
Your book club host is Sarah Tesla. She is a documentarian and mental health advocate with a focus on trauma, recovery and de-stigmatization. She has a Masters of International Studies from Simon Fraser University, as well as training in mental health first-aid, trauma-informed practices in storytelling and is completing course work in neurobiology.
She contributes to a support group for loved ones who are impacted by someone living with emotional dysregulation, also known as Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD). Sarah is also exploring moral Injury and decolonizing therapy in trauma recovery. This spring she launched the Being Human Project, — an advocacy resource for anyone struggling with mental health and for friends and family who support them.
The Reading List
In our ongoing efforts to support our community with reshaping our relationship to mental health and provide support to as many people as we can, we are excited to launch the WIRTH Book Club. The reading list explores literature on mental health that has the potential to increase our awareness, compassion and understanding of something we all struggle with — ourselves.
A note about this reading list: Our booklist is intentionally diverse both in its authors, but also in its approach. The traditional medical-model approach to mental health is very gradually making way for something new. Our hope is that combining these various narratives will introduce you to some new insights that support your journey.
Vancouver Book Stores
If you are located in the Vancouver area, we recommend checking out:
Heart Berries, By Therese Marie Mailhot (memoir)
July 15th to Sep 2nd
This is the debut book from First Nation Canadian writer Terese Marie Mailhot. It follows Mailhot through her troubled childhood, early and tumultuous motherhood, and into her adult struggles with mental health and personal identity.
Heavy: An American Memoir, By Kiese Laymon (memoir)
Sep 3rd to Oct 7th
In Heavy, Laymon writes eloquently and honestly about growing up a hard-headed black son to a complicated and brilliant black mother in Jackson, Mississippi. From his early experiences of sexual violence to his suspension from college, to his trek to New York as a young college professor, Laymon charts his complex relationship with his mother, grandmother, anorexia, obesity, sex, writing, and ultimately gambling.
It Didn’t Start With You, By Mark Wolynn (self exploration/ edu)
October 8th to Nov 4th
Depression. Anxiety. Chronic Pain. Phobias. Obsessive thoughts. The evidence is compelling: the roots of these difficulties may not reside in our immediate life experience or in chemical imbalances in our brains—but in the lives of our parents, grandparents, and even great-grandparents.
The Body Keeps the Score, By Bessel Van Der Kolk M.D. (edu)
Nov 5th to Dec 2nd
Trauma is a fact of life. Veterans and their families deal with the painful aftermath of combat; one in five Americans has been molested; one in four grew up with alcoholics; one in three couples have engaged in physical violence. Such experiences inevitably leave traces on minds, emotions, and even on biology. Renowned trauma expert Bessel van der Kolk has spent over three decades working with survivors. In this book, he transforms our understanding of traumatic stress, revealing how it literally rearranges the brain’s wiring—specifically areas dedicated to pleasure, engagement, control, and trust.
All About Love: New Visions, By Bell Hooks (self-exploration)
Jan 2nd to Feb 3rd
All About Love offers radical new ways to think about love by showing its interconnectedness in our private and public lives. In eleven concise chapters, Hooks explains how our everyday notions of what it means to give and receive love often fail us, and how these ideals are established in early childhood. She offers a rethinking of self-love (without narcissism) that will bring peace and compassion to our personal and professional lives and asserts the place of love to end struggles between individuals, in communities, and among societies.
Boundaries and Relationships, By Charles Whitfield M.D. (self-exploration/ edu)
Feb 4th to March 3rd
This comprehensive book opens with clear definitions and descriptions of boundaries, a self-assessment survey and a history of our accumulated knowledge. Going deeper, it describes the 10 essential areas of human interaction wherein you can improve your relationships. These include age regression, giving and receiving (projection and projective identification), triangles, core recovery issues, basic dynamics, unfinished business and spirituality.