• It Didn't Start with You

  • How Inherited Family Trauma Shapes Who We Are and How to End the Cycle
  • By: Mark Wolynn
  • Narrated by: Mark Wolynn
  • Length: 8 hrs and 16 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Release date: 26-04-16
  • Language: English
  • Publisher: Penguin Audio
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars 4.5 (61 ratings)


A groundbreaking approach to transforming traumatic legacies passed down in families over generations, by an acclaimed expert in the field. 
Depression. Anxiety. Chronic Pain. Phobias. Obsessive thoughts. The evidence is compelling: the roots of these difficulties may not reside in our immediate life experiences or in chemical imbalances in our brains - but in the lives of our parents, grandparents, and even great-grandparents. The latest scientific research, now making headlines, supports what many have long intuited: that traumatic experience can be passed down through generations. 
It Didn't Start with You builds on the work of leading experts in post-traumatic stress, including Mount Sinai School of Medicine neuroscientist Rachel Yehuda and psychiatrist Bessel van der Kolk, author of The Body Keeps the Score. Even if the person who suffered the original trauma has died or the story has been forgotten or silenced, memory and feelings can live on. These emotional legacies are often hidden, encoded in everything from gene expression to everyday language, and they play a far greater role in our emotional and physical health than has ever before been understood. 
As a pioneer in the field of inherited family trauma, Mark Wolynn has worked with individuals and groups on a therapeutic level for over 20 years. It Didn't Start with You offers a pragmatic and prescriptive guide to his method, the Core Language Approach. Diagnostic self-inventories provide a way to uncover the fears and anxieties conveyed through everyday words, behaviors, and physical symptoms. Techniques for developing a genogram or extended family tree create a map of experiences going back through the generations. And visualization, active imagination, and direct dialogue create pathways to reconnection, integration, and reclaiming life and health. It Didn't Start With You is a transformative approach to resolving longstanding difficulties that, in many cases, traditional therapy, drugs, or other interventions have not had the capacity to touch. 
PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying PDF will be available in your Audible Library along with the audio.
©2016 Mark Wolynn (P)2016 Penguin Audio
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Critic reviews

"Mark Wolynn does a masterful job of illuminating the ways in which our ancestors' unresolved suffering, often unknown to us, disables us and binds us painfully to them. He gives us the tools and skills - an approach that combines understanding, imaginative dialogues, and compassionate reconnection - to free and heal ourselves." (James S. Gordon, MD, author of Unstuck: Your Guide to the Seven-Stage Journey out of Depression)
" It Didn't Start with You takes us a big step forward, advancing the fields of trauma therapy, mindfulness applications, and human understanding. It is a bold, creative, and compassionate work." (Sharon Salzberg, author of Lovingkindness and Real Happiness)
"This groundbreaking book offers a compelling understanding of inherited trauma and fresh, powerful tools for relieving its suffering. Mark Wolynn is a wise and trustworthy guide on the journey toward healing." (Tara Brach, PhD, author of Radical Acceptance and True Refuge)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Miss B on 18-02-17

A book that must be finished before judging

Outstanding book i hated it at first was even considering asking for my money back. Its my first audible book i bought only took me 2 days to listen to it & do all the task but has completely changed my view of my parents. I've heard so many times in life you must forgive your parents but never really understand why until now. I hated this until i got to about chapter 10 i was so angry listening to it. My parents were very abusive & abandoned me very young which lead to abusive childhood which i had never truly forgiven them for, now i understand by not forgiving them am also not forgiving myself. Fighting life trying to not be like them unknowingly i've actually created the same relationship they had, which i must forgive them so i can forgive myself. I now understand the importance of knowing your history. This is a book that until you get to the end you dont see its true value & its true healing. Would highly recommend this book especially if you come from a dysfunctional childhood. This book is also good for those suffering from anxiety, misery, depression, deep seated sadness, fear, loneliness, it will help you find the root cause which you maybe completely unaware of. This book will help you find healing within yourself. So glad this was my first audible book looking forward to my next one :)

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14 of 15 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By cat on 24-12-16

Really insightful and compelling

It's seems in some ways like quite an out there idea but they are good and making you see how this could be why I carry so much more than I can explain it opened up the connections in my family's past and my grandad a life was ruins by ptsd that started the same age as mine, which I have spent my life battling with, it connects you to the big picture and facilitates forgiveness I think or at least has planted a seed I have to go back and do all the exercises properly but I think it's great for those who have found it it's likely you came to it for a reason! Merry Christmas xx

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7 of 8 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
2 out of 5 stars
By Victor on 09-08-16

Valuable insights one big flaw

Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

The book is a very mixed piece of work, valuable as a manual on Hellinger family trauma work and very doubtful when it sets as an ultimate goal for adult children to understand the limitations of the parents, take responsibility for the break up in a relationship with their parents, and repent. The book recommends to all listeners as a resolution to contact their parents and tell them "Mom/Dad I miss you, I am sorry for not being more loving and pushing you away". The approach seems to work for the cases presented in the book. A serious flaw that I see comes from applying this advice to cases of child abuse that can and should be classified as criminal offence - rape, molastacion, severe/systematic beating. The author dose not talk about such cases but by coaching all childhood trauma survivors toward loving their parents and expressing remorse/responsibility for the break up in the relationship with them he inadvertently sends the victims down the path where they ae responsible for their rape/torture etc. The reason I think it's a very big flaw of this book is because it takes a lot of courage and coaching for such victims to overcome shame and properly direct their anger on the abusive parents and not on themselves and here the book can be potentially very misleading.

Would you recommend It Didn't Start with You to your friends? Why or why not?

No, I would recommend something else on Hellinger therapy

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54 of 57 people found this review helpful

2 out of 5 stars
By Schmonka on 03-02-17

Not audible friendly, get written version

Not good as an audible book because every five out ten minutes he's telling you to stop the book until you do the written exercise. I'll never finish my laundry this way!

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23 of 25 people found this review helpful

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