If you have come to this website it is likely because you know shame is an issue in your life. It is because you know that shame is causing you to feel less than other people, to feel like isolating yourself, to act in ways that are detrimental to your health, your relationship to others and to your success in life.

My hope is that this website will provide you with the kind of help you are looking for in order to heal your shame. In addition to showcasing my two latest books on shame: It Wasn’t Your Fault: Freeing Yourself from the Shame of Childhood Abuse with the Power of Self-Compassion and my memoir, Raising Myself: A Memoir of Neglect, Shame and Growing Up Too Soon, I will offer you articles on shame and a blog where I will address my responses to current events and answers to your questions.

The Effects of Shame

Hope for Healing

If your life is being negatively affected by shame I want you to know there is hope. Just as the lotus flower rises up from the deepest and thickest mud, you can rise up out of your shame. This website will offer you articles, blogs, exercises, questionnaires and recommended books to help you heal your shame—whether it came from childhood abuse, sexual abuse, assault or harassment, or physical or emotional abuse in an adult relationship.

My Hope for Healing Program

Who Am I?

Beverly Engel is an internationally recognized psychotherapist and an acclaimed advocate for victims of sexual, physical, and emotional abuse. The author of 22 self-help books, her latest book is entitled, It Wasn’t Your Fault: Freeing Yourself from the Shame of Childhood Abuse with the Power of Self-Compassion. Engel is a licensed marriage and family therapist, and has been practicing psychotherapy for 35 years.

I have dedicated my career to helping those who were abused in childhood or as an adult. As a survivor of child sexual abuse and emotional abuse myself, I have a great deal of respect and compassion for victims of abuse, especially the difficulties they have due to debilitating shame—what I consider to be the most damaging effect of abuse. I am so dedicated to helping former victims heal their shame that I created this website solely for this purpose.

All my books

My Latest Books


In this groundbreaking book, leading psychotherapist Beverly Engel reveals the truth about how shame affects victims, explains the nuances behind the emotion of shame, and teaches readers how to develop more self-awareness about how shame has manifested in their lives, along with powerful and effective shame-reduction strategies.

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In The Emotionally Abused Woman, therapist Beverly Engel introduced the concept of emotional abuse, one of the most subtle, yet devastating forms of abuse within a relationship. Now Engel exposes the most destructive technique the abuser uses to break our spirit and gain control–and guides readers on how to free themselves from the shame that can keep them from the life (and the love) they deserve.

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A powerfully inspiring and unflinchingly honest story of how best-selling author and abuse recovery expert Beverly Engel made her way in the world—in spite of her mother’s neglect and constant criticism, being sexually abused at nine, and raped at twelve.

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Shame is one of the most destructive of human emotions. If you suffered childhood physical or sexual abuse, you may experience such intense feelings of shame that it almost seems to define you as a person. In order to begin healing, it’s important for you to know that it wasn’t your fault.

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Praise for Raising Myself

“A gut-wrenching, cleareyed coming-of-age memoir…clean writing well serves this account of a child’s abuse and survival.”
Kirkus Reviews

“Beverly Engel saved my life by showing me, and millions of others, how to recover from the aftermath of abuse. Now, we get to discover the woman behind the recovery movement. Through her personal story, Beverly illuminates how quickly our innocence can be destroyed by the subtle choices those who are supposed to love us make, and more important, teaches us how to have hope for a better future.”

Rhonda Britten, Emmy Award-winner, Bestselling Author Fearless Living, Founder of Fearless Living.org.

“Beverly writes with poignancy and insight about a horrific childhood that could have broken her spirit. Raising Myself is the remarkable journey of a lost child becoming an empowered young woman. We follow Beverly as she journeys from one mishap to another, searching for herself, searching for love, searching for meaning. The fact that she was successful at maneuvering through the minefield of her childhood is a testament to her courage, strength, and resilience. There is brutal honesty here, but there is also a great deal of hope.”

Susan Forward, Ph.D., author of Mothers Who Can’t Love and Toxic Parents

“When we write a coming-of-age memoir, we become the witness to the life of the child we once were, someone who did not have the larger perspective of the writer/narrator. Raising Myself asks the reader to join Beverly Engel as an abused and neglected child, and see the world through her eyes. The readers is comforted in knowing that she will survive and heal, and the book gives hope to those who have been lost.”

Linda Joy Myers, President of the National Association of Memoir Writers; author of Don’t Call Me Mother, Song of the Plains, and Power of Memoir
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Praise for It Wasn’t Your Fault

“With uncommon clarity and kindness, the author speaks directly to the invisible heart of childhood abuse—shame. Readers will recognize the authentic voice of a former victim as she gently guides them on the healing path to self-compassion. It is an artful distillation of self-compassion theory, research, and practice for those who have suffered long enough. I can’t recommend it highly enough.”

Christopher Germer, PhD, clinical instructor at Harvard Medical School and author of The Mindful Path to Self-Compassion

“This book provides an in-depth understanding of the many ways shame sustains the harm of past abuse, and outlines a powerful program using self-compassion to free yourself from these bonds. Read it and heal.”

Kristin Neff, PhD, author of Self-Compassion

“In this beautifully written book, Beverly Engel offers us a scholarly, yet easily-accessible understanding of the nature of shame and the harm that it does us. She also articulates very clearly how compassion is one of the most important antidotes for shame. After all, it’s easy to be compassionate toward people we like—but real compassion is for when things get tough. No one can read this book without coming away with considerable insights into the problematic ways we often treat ourselves and the value of developing compassion—not just as an easy option, but as a courageous way to deal with our inner struggles. I can’t recommend this book highly enough; it is well-researched, highly informative, and helpful. A real gift to those struggling with the inner conflicts of self-doubt and criticism.”

Paul Gilbert, PHD, author of The Compassionate Mind

“What a wonderful book! Beverly Engel has a deep understanding of how abuse and neglect affect children. Once again, she has written a much-needed, breakthrough book for those recovering from abuse. This time, she presents a profoundly powerful program to help survivors overcome one of the most devastating effects of abuse—debilitating shame. In it she teaches survivors how to practice self-compassion—an amazing healing tool. I highly recommend this book to anyone who was abused or neglected in childhood or adulthood.”

Susan Forward, PHD, author of Toxic Parents and Mothers Who Can’t Love
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