What Happened to You?
Conversations on Trauma, Resilience, and Healing
Author: Oprah Winfrey and Bruce D. Perry, M.D., Ph.D.
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Our earliest experiences shape our lives far down the road, and What Happened to You? provides powerful scientific and emotional insights into the behavioral patterns so many of us struggle to understand.
“Through this lens we can build a renewed sense of personal self-worth and ultimately recalibrate our responses to circumstances, situations, and relationships. It is, in other words, the key to reshaping our very lives.”—Oprah Winfrey
This book is going to change the way you see your life.
Have you ever wondered "Why did I do that?" or "Why can't I just control my behavior?" Others may judge our reactions and think, "What's wrong with that person?" When questioning our emotions, it's easy to place the blame on ourselves; holding ourselves and those around us to an impossible standard. It's time we started asking a different question.
Through deeply personal conversations, Oprah Winfrey and renowned brain and trauma expert Dr. Bruce Perry offer a groundbreaking and profound shift from asking “What’s wrong with you?” to “What happened to you?”
Here, Winfrey shares stories from her own past, understanding through experience the vulnerability that comes from facing trauma and adversity at a young age. In conversation throughout the book, she and Dr. Perry focus on understanding people, behavior, and ourselves. It’s a subtle but profound shift in our approach to trauma, and it’s one that allows us to understand our pasts in order to clear a path to our future—opening the door to resilience and healing in a proven, powerful way.
Flatiron Books: An Oprah Book
In The News
"Where Hope Lives:
What we experience in childhood shapes us forever—and that is especially true for young victims of trauma. It’s a lesson Oprah learned as a child being raised by an abusive grandmother. She developed 'a keen sense of when trouble was brewing'—when she would be subjected to 'whuppings' at times so brutal, the welts left behind would bleed through her clothing.
As a result of this and other abuse she suffered, Oprah has had a lifelong interest in understanding and overcoming the profound effects of early trauma—and helping others do the same. Now, she’s teamed up with neuroscientist and child trauma expert Bruce Perry, MD, PhD, on this essential book. Revealing, intimate, and educational, it’s a testament to the authors’ wish for readers to come to grips with, and let go of, the past—and to move forward into 'post-traumatic wisdom.'"
—Leigh Haber, O Magazine