Reviving Ophelia: Saving The Selves Of Adolescent Girls by Mary PipherReviving Ophelia: Saving The Selves Of Adolescent Girls by Mary Pipher

Reviving Ophelia: Saving The Selves Of Adolescent Girls

byMary Pipher

Paperback | August 1, 2005

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#1 New York Times Bestseller

The groundbreaking work that poses one of the most provocative questions of a generation: what is happening to the selves of adolescent girls?

As a therapist, Mary Pipher was becoming frustrated with the growing problems among adolescent girls. Why were so many of them turning to therapy in the first place? Why had these lovely and promising human beings fallen prey to depression, eating disorders, suicide attempts, and crushingly low self-esteem? The answer hit a nerve with Pipher, with parents, and with the girls themselves. Crashing and burning in a “developmental Bermuda Triangle,” they were coming of age in a media-saturated culture preoccupied with unrealistic ideals of beauty and images of dehumanized sex, a culture rife with addictions and sexually transmitted diseases. They were losing their resiliency and optimism in a “girl-poisoning” culture that propagated values at odds with those necessary to survive.   

Told in the brave, fearless, and honest voices of the girls themselves who are emerging from the chaos of adolescence, Reviving Ophelia is a call to arms, offering important tactics, empathy, and strength, and urging a change where young hearts can flourish again, and rediscover and reengage their sense of self.
Mary Pipher, Ph.D., is a psychologist and the author of nine books, including the New York Times bestsellers Reviving Ophelia, The Shelter of Each Other, and Another Country, as well as Seeking Peace and Writing to Change the World. She lives in Nebraska.
Title:Reviving Ophelia: Saving The Selves Of Adolescent GirlsFormat:PaperbackDimensions:312 pages, 8.24 × 5.45 × 0.81 inPublished:August 1, 2005Publisher:Penguin Publishing GroupLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1594481881

ISBN - 13:9781594481888

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Rated 5 out of 5 by from Phenomenal book! Mary Pipher is an amazing author, and this book is a must-read for all parents of young girls. Although written in 1995, it's as poignant and relevant today as it was then. It is definitely a pertinent tool in raising girls in this "girl poisoning" culture.
Date published: 2009-05-17
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Unbelievable Complete and utter trash. Any book on adolescence that says, "My friend once told me to think of teenagers as constantly on LSD. It was a good idea." has little to no idea of that which it speaks. The girls and examples in this book are so incredibly juvenile and thick, I would only recommend buying it if your daughter is psychologically unwell or has been raised by coneheads. What an insult to teenaged girls. Total drivel.
Date published: 2007-10-14

Read from the Book

EXCERPTReviving Ophelia is my attempt to understand my experiences in therapy with adolescent girls. Many girls come into therapy with serious, even life-threatening problems, such as anorexia or the desire to physically hurt or kill themselves. Others have problems less dangerous but still more puzzling, such as school refusal, underachievement, moodiness, or constant discord with their parents. Many are victims of sexual violence.As I talked to these girls, I became aware of how little I really understood the world of adolescent girls today. It didn't work to use my own adolescent experience from the early 1960s to make generalizations. Girls were living in a whole new world....Even in our small city with its mostly middle-class population, girls often experienced trauma. How could we help girls heal from that trauma? And what could we do to prevent it?This last year I have struggled to make sense of this. Why are girls having more trouble now than my friends and I had when we were adolescents? Many of us hated our adolescent years, yet for the most part we weren't suicidal and we didn't develop eating disorders, cut ourselves, or run away from home....But girls today are much more oppressed. They are coming of age in a more dangerous, sexualized, and media-saturated culture. They face incredible pressures to be beautiful and sophisticated, which in junior high means using chemicals and being sexual. As they navigate a more dangerous world, girls are less protected.As I looked at the culture that girls enter as they come of age, I was struck by what a girl-poisoning culture it was. The more I looked around, the more I listened to today'smusic, watched television and movies and looked at sexist advertising, the more convinced I became that we are on the wrong path with our daughters. America today limits girls' development, truncates their wholeness, and leaves many of them traumatized....What can we do to help them? We can strengthen girls so that they will be ready. We can encourage emotional toughness and self-protection. We can support and guide them. But most important, we can change our culture. We can work together to build a culture that is less complicated and more nurturing, less violent and sexualized and more growth-producing. Our daughters deserve a society in which all their gifts can be developed and appreciated. I hope this book fosters a debate on how we can build that society for them.

Table of Contents

Preface ..... 11Chapter 1: Saplings in the Storm ..... 17Chapter 2: Theoretical Issues - For Your Own Good ..... 29Chapter 3: Developmental Issues - "I'm Not Waving, I'm Drowning" ..... 45Chapter 4: Families - The Root Systems ..... 74Chapter 5: Mothers ..... 101Chapter 6: Fathers ..... 115Chapter 7: Divorce ..... 131Chapter 8: Within the Hurricane - Depression ..... 146Chapter 9: Worshiping the Gods of Thinness ..... 166Chapter 10: Drugs and Alcohol - If Ophelia Were Alive Today ..... 186Chapter 11: Sex and Violence ..... 203Chapter 12: Then and Now ..... 232Chapter 13: What I've Learned from Listening ..... 248Chapter 14: Let a Thousand Flowers Bloom ..... 260Chapter 15: A Fence at the Top of the Hill ..... 282Recommended Reading ..... 295Index ..... 297

Editorial Reviews

“An important book…Pipher shines high-beam headlights on the world of teenage girls.”—Los Angeles Times“A must-read for all of us who care about young women in our lives…Reviving Ophelia arms us with information we can use in helping our daughters grow to adulthood with their strength intact.”—Lincoln Star Journal“Pipher is an eloquent advocate…[she] offers concrete suggestions for ways by which girls can build and maintain a strong sense of self.”—Publishers Weekly “Serious and thoughtful material presented with the fluidity of good fiction.”—Kirkus Reviews