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Black women are beautiful, intelligent and capable —but mostly they embrace strong. Esteemed clinical psychologist, Dr. Inger Burnett-Zeigler, praises the strength of women, while exploring how trauma and adversity have led to deep emotional pain and shaped how they walk through the world.
Black women’s strength is intimately tied to their unacknowledged suffering. An estimated eight in ten have endured some form of trauma—sexual abuse, domestic abuse, poverty, childhood abandonment, victim/witness to violence, and regular confrontation with racism and sexism. Nobody Knows the Trouble I’ve Seen shows that trauma often impacts mental and physical well-being. It can contribute to stress, anxiety, PTSD, and depression. Unaddressed it can lead to hypertension, diabetes, heart disease, overeating, and alcohol and drug abuse, and other chronic health issues.
Dr. Burnett-Zeigler explains that the strong Black woman image does not take into account the urgency of Black women’s needs, which must be identified in order to lead abundant lives. It interferes with her relationships and ability to function day to day. Through mindfulness and compassionate self-care, the psychologist offers methods for establishing authentic strength from the inside out.
This informative guide to healing, is life-changing, showing Black women how to prioritize the self and find everyday joys in self-worth, as well as discover the fullness and beauty within both her strength and vulnerability.
Dr. Inger Burnett-Zeigler is a licensed clinical psychologist and associate professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the Feinberg School of Medicine at Northwestern University. She has two decades of clinical experience helping people with stress, trauma, mood and anxiety conditions, and interpersonal strain. In her clinical practice she promotes holistic wellness through mindfulness and compassionate self-care. Inger’s scholarly work focuses on the role that social determinants of health play in mental illness and treatment, particularly in the Black community. She is an advocate for normalizing participation in mental health treatment and assuring that all individuals have access to high-quality, evidence based mental health care. Inger has written dozens of articles and other publications on trauma and mental health in the Black community and lectures widely on research about barriers to access and engagement in mental health treatment, mindfulness and strategies to improve mental health treatment participation and outcomes. She is an active contributor to the public discourse on mental health and she has been featured in the New York Times, TIME Magazine, and Chicago Tribune. Inger received her undergraduate degree in psychology from Cornell University, her doctorate in clinical psychology from Northwestern University, and completed a post-doctoral fellowship at the VA Ann Arbor/University of Michigan. She is a lifelong Chicagoan.