2 Fantastic Self-Help Books by Indian Authors for Abuse Survivors



Please note that this article contains some information about abuse as it relates to self-help books. If you or someone you know could be experiencing abuse of any kind, do not hesitate to call the domestic violence hotline: 1.800.799.SAFE (7233).

Abuse is when someone abuses their authority to damage or control someone else. Maltreatment can take the form of physical, verbal, or emotional abuse. Abuse of any kind can inflict physical and psychological harm.

Abuse may create psychological scars that are more difficult to repair than physical ones. Long after the violence has stopped, survivors of abuse may experience powerful, unpleasant feelings. 

Survivors frequently experience anxiety, flashbacks, and trust difficulties. Abuse can make it difficult for a person to develop connections and find pleasure. 

Abuse survivors are not alone and there are many resources that can help them. Most prominently, therapists can typically assist survivors of abuse in understanding their emotions, overcoming obstacles, and managing symptoms. 

Therapy is often considered to be the most helpful resource for those who have survived abuse or are experiencing abuse. To learn more about such connections and learn about connecting with an online therapist, you can visit BetterHelp.  

Cultural norms can contribute to perspectives on mental health care. If you are a person who may appreciate reading about self-help from an Indian author or anyone learning about self-help, here are few books by Indian authors that could be useful. 

Bitter Chocolate: Child Sexual Abuse In India by Pinky Virani


In this novel, the author questions ideas about family honor and morality. The conspiracy of silence around child sexual abuse (CSA) in Indian households has to be broken. 

This ground-breaking book provides a forceful voice to defend the rights of sexually assaulted children. It contains shocking revelations about middle-class and upper-class men and women who sexually abuse their children and then quiet them into obedience. 

Based on research, complaints, and inquiry, this book indicates that at least 20% of girls and boys under the age of sixteen are sexually assaulted regularly, half of them in their own homes by family members. 

Bitter Chocolate is aimed at anyone who could prevent these atrocities and attempts to inform and engage people in positions of power to use any tools at their disposal to recognize signs, keep this from happening, and defeat the culture of silence if it does. 

Survivors of abuse may also learn that they are not alone, but should be cognizant of potential triggers in self-help books regarding abuse.

What We Talk about When We Talk about Rape by Sohaila Abdulali


Sohaila Abdulali examines what different parts of our collective society may think about rape and could say from the perspective of a survivor, writer, counselor, and activist. 

The author draws on three decades of personal and professional grappling with the issue and her work with hundreds of survivors.

She also looks into the things we don’t mention. She poses relevant scientific questions in an attempt to understand this unfathomable thing: Is rape usually a defining event in a person’s life? Is rape traditionally associated with something? Is rape more heinous than murder? Is rape linked to sexual desire? Who is it that is raped? Is rape a foregone conclusion? Is one type of rape more severe than the other? And other such questions.


Abuse is a prevalent issue in the society of any country, and some authors publish self-help books in an attempt to tackle the problem while destigmatizing mental health issues. 

When society becomes a safe space for discussion and debate, consequences for abusers and survivors coming forward with their stories could become more common. These Indian writers study and can share their stories to empower others.  

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