New Book Looks at How Trauma is Passed from Generationto Generation, and Presents a Path to Healing.
By Dr. Milgraum Dec. 28, 2012
Silver Spring, MD—Noted psychologist, Dr. Michael Milgraum, is very familiar with the effects of trauma. “My mother is a Holocaust survivor," says Milgraum, " She bears deep emotional wounds from the war.” Milgraum's early experiences gave him a lifelong interest in the effects of trauma and in attempts to rebuild ones world after trauma. His professional experiences include the effects of the Holocaust on survivors and their children, spousal abuse and child abuse. “These are painful stories,” says Milgraum, “but they are also very important, because, in seeing how people heal from their emotional scars, we learn something essential about the power of hope and faith."
Milgraum started writing a novel about trauma and healing six years ago. Going against conventional wisdom, he did not submit a sample chapter to publishers before completing the project. “I did not want to be constrained by issues of marketability. I felt I had a mission to communicate a particular message to others.”
Now his message is available for all to read. Milgraum’s first novel Never Forget My Soul can be obtained on Amazon.com and in bookstores.
The novel explores the lives of six traumatized individuals receiving treatment in a therapy group. The book demonstrates how emotional scars are passed from generation to generation and how people must reach out to others in order to heal. To illustrate the lasting effects of trauma, Milgraum uses flashbacks to individuals’ traumatic experiences, many years before. Shifts from present to past and back again create a strong feeling of suspense throughout the story.
"Dr. Milgraum’s compelling new book is very much for our times, yet goes far beyond our times. His narrative takes on a history of destruction and the shattered parts of ourselves with the profound conviction that there must be a better way to live. His story demonstrates gently and with compassion that hope is renewed the moment a human being opens his heart to the plight of another. And much more than a mere story, Never Forget My Soul is a journey towards the discovery of ripened, abiding spirituality,” says Dr. Yael Danieli. Dr. Danieli is a renowned expert on the effects of the Holocaust on multiple generations. The Holocaust and its emotional aftermath play an important role in Milgraum’s book.
Milgraum points to present Holocaust denial efforts as an example of the hate that we must struggle against. This coming January 20th is the 70th anniversary of the famous Wannsee conference, where German officials secretly finalized their plan for the annihilation of European Jewry. “What a significant time to come out with my book!” says Milgraum. “As a defiance against Hitler, my book demonstrates that the only true hope for mankind can be found in compassion, respect for others, community and spirituality.” Milgraum is deeply religious and actively involved in his local synagogue.
“This is more than just a story,” Milgraum says. “It’s a lesson in how we inflict pain as a community and how we can heal as a community. Group therapy illustrates this and is a microcosm of our entire world.”
About Dr. Michael Milgraum
A psychologist, lawyer, writer, husband and father, Dr. Michael Milgraum has his own practice in Silver Spring, MD. Born in Long Island, he lived in Australia for much of his formative years. Milgraum is an active member of the local Jewish community. Never Forget My Soul is his first novel, and is available on Amazon and in bookstores.