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Raising Abel


Pros: Short read and so much wisdom packed within

Cons: Can't put it down and there is much else to do!

Carolyn Nash asked me to review this and she let me have a copy to read.  I was happy to do so.


You will read many other reviews on Amazon and Kirkus that stress what an important and accurate book this is, and especially so for foster and adoptive parents. I totally agree. This book is exceptional not only because it outlines just how difficult it is to recover from early childhood trauma, but that it takes an extraordinary parent to raise a traumatized child well. The author worked just as hard as her child. She intuitively knew that parenting was an 'inside-out' job. As parents, we must learn from our children and heal ourselves as we seek to help our children. Carolyn Nash did so many things right.


The book is a terrific read for any one considering foster or adoptive parenting. Not every child will handle things as this child did--some will be more resilient, some will be less. But the love and empathy that the author was able to keep hold of for her dear son, is absolutely exemplary and worthy of everyone's attention. I recommend this book highly!

Raising Abel

KIRKUS REVIEWSA woman of remarkable resourcefulness single-handedly raises a troubled child all the way to manhood in this intimate and inspiring blog-to-book memoir.At 38, Carolyn Nash had a good job, no apparent struggles and few conscious regrets—save, perhaps, her weight and her childlessness. She remedies the latter by fostering and then adopting 3-year-old Abel, a victim ofunspeakable parental abuse, most of it sexual. The consequences are predictable and agonizing. Abel is charmingly innocent yet uncontrollably violent, and as he grows, so do his PTSD symptoms. He refuses to bathe,he fails in school. Thrown toys become thrown punches, then smashed windshields. Psychiatrists are consulted, police called. Special education, home-schooling, hospitalizations, meds—all resources are tried and exhausted. Yet Nash remains indefatigable, wrestling with her son (literally) and with her inner demons and repressed memories, haltingly revealed in sessions with her therapist. Through the lens of Abel’s trauma, Nash peers into her own nightmares—she too feels deformed and unlovable—and learns their sick source. The book is structured almost entirely in short, dramatic episodes, a technique Nash uses skillfully... late in the story, when the troubled teen turns violently on Nash herself ... we get apenetrating glimpse into Abel’s beating heart, where his triggers, his alienation and his lifelong struggle come into searing focus. Here Nash givesus Abel in full, and we see with our own eyes how the measure of this young man is also the measure of the woman who raised him—with pure,dogged, unrelenting, overwhelming, at times selfish, often desperate, boundless, evergreen love. This was her treatment and her cure. We know itby its common term—mothering.A sobering but uplifting tale of love that never gives up; dramatically told, ultimately rewarding.Nash, CarolynRAISING ABELCreateSpace (332 pp.)$15.99 Paperback$3.99 e-bookNovember 5, 2011ISBN: 978-1466499263

AuthorCarolyn Nash
BindingKindle Edition
List Price$3.99
Number Of Items1
Number Of Pages333
Product GroupeBooks
Product Type NameABIS_EBOOKS
Publication Date2011-11-04
TitleRaising Abel
Release Date2011-11-04
FormatKindle eBook
Model Name/TypeMPNEAN/UPC