Shelter from Our Secrets, Silence, and Shame

How Our Stories Can Keep Us Stuck or Set Us Free

Non-Fiction - Self Help
294 Pages
Reviewed on 02/15/2022
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Author Biography

As a mental health clinician for over 35 years, Rebecca Brown has been a safe place for others to seek shelter from their secrets, silence and shame. Inspired to finally slow down, stop running from herself and share her own story, she found ways to seek and savour her own shelter.
Rebecca's professional journey has ranged from medical social work, childhood trauma, first responders crisis response, international psychological first aid and equine assisted therapy.
She shares her life and her career with her husband, a family physician and trailblazer in the field of lifestyle medicine. Together they live and work on the shores of the Great Lake Huron, where they seek and share shelter with their six adult children, four grandchildren, extended family and friends, two dogs, two cats and one horse.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Vincent Dublado for Readers' Favorite

Shelter from Our Secrets, Silence, and Shame: How Our Stories Can Keep Us Stuck or Set Us Free by Rebecca Brown is the product of a deep longing to share her story that allows her to take a step toward common ground with many readers. This is not the self-help type where the author offers meaning, affirmation, validation, and tools. Rather, it is a collection of stories gleaned from her years of experience working with patients with traumatic experiences. These stories serve in building a space where anyone can connect with other people’s bitter yet enlightening truths. She shares not only the experiences of her patients but her own as well that began in her early childhood. In doing so, the book aims to heal the toxicity that consumes us from the inside. While our secrets, silence, and shame will always be present as they have carved a mark in our past, it does not mean that we should lose our connectedness to ourselves and others.

It takes courage and resilience to write a book like Shelter from Our Secrets. Rebecca Brown boldly demonstrates by example as she opens her own heart and tells her own story. In her crisp narrative, you learn what separates people who manage to face their dark struggles and how it has shaped them to become a stronger and better version of themselves over those who chose to let their secrets and shame define them. Having mental and emotional strength does not entail having some special genetic trait. There is no hocus pocus here. As a clinical social worker who went through her own struggles, Brown understands the importance of setting realistic expectations and the willingness to embrace the story of who you are with all your heart. Shelter from Our Secrets is a great read—one that helps you to take a step toward self-healing.

Bernadette Longu

Shelter From our Secrets, Silence, and Shame: How Our Stories Can Keep Us Stuck or Set Us Free is written by Rebecca Brown. This is one of the most sensitive topics in trauma counseling, especially when it covers a host of abuses, causes, secrets, and cover-ups that can stretch over a lifetime and can cover 3 generations of the same family in different ways as each trauma is revealed. The author wrote this book during the second wave of Covid19 in 2020. She takes you on a journey from the year 1973 to the year 2021. With historical and family stops on the way, this book shows how history can affect people in different ways and that you do not always recognize how history has affected you.

Shelter From our Secrets, Silence, and Shame should be read by everyone from cover to cover. It will be a slow read but it will have you looking at yourself and your family and realizing how many times your family has actually held out their hands for help and backs were turned as it was not a thing discussed, talked about, or acknowledged out loud, if at all. Rebecca Brown has written a very thought-provoking book that will have you going back again and again to use the guidelines she gives, not only to help yourself but those around you. Rebecca has used her own experiences and, with permission, those of others to write a most awesome self-help book which is actually a tremendous help to all who read it, whether you are aware that you have problems or do not. The poems and letters are an inspiration in themselves. Thank you, Rebecca, for a book that will remain with me for a long time and which I will be reading again.

Vernita Naylor

Three years ago, what we didn't know was that many of us were not living but only surviving. We were ingesting and digesting a life that was fast-paced and unpalatable. Then COVID hit, stopping people in their tracks. This pandemic made people pause, reflect, and re-evaluate their lives and what's important to them. What has surfaced are low wages, health disparities, suicide increases, and unfair conditions. More than ever, therapists' offices are filled with new cases of people in despair, seeking answers, help, and looking for ways to unpack their trauma. In honor of her grandmother who passed away with a deep dark secret, Rebecca Brown, a clinical social worker, penned Shelter from Our Secrets, Silence, and Shame: How Our Stories Can Keep Us Stuck or Set Us Free. "I feel both compelled and encouraged by her memory, which is giving me the voice to share her story and release the secret and the silence because secrets only survive in the darkness," says the author. This is a book designed to help you lay your burdens down and set your secrets free. Let your secrets blow like the wind as they're being cast into the abyss. Rebecca is candid about her journey after she discovered her grandmother's secret. She outlines her perspective from childhood until her grandmother's death at ninety years old and how she had to face the trauma of the secret that had been inflicted upon her and the family.

Looking at the numerous phases and paths that Rebecca faced in Shelter from Our Secrets, Silence, and Shame was refreshing because it displayed and reflected the trauma and wounds from all sides. This book was not only a tool of release for Rebecca but offers a therapeutic release for the reader. This is a timely body of work because a lot of people are seeking resources and tools that address their needs, hurt, and pain, especially during these turbulent times. As you read through these pages, you will see that you're not alone. It is hoped that you are able to release any suffering, guilt, or shame that you are encountering due to your secrets. Take charge of your destiny now and begin the process of healing by picking up a copy of this book. Highly recommended.