I am using this space to share thoughts, from time to time, that come from my clinical work and reading.  I hope this is helpful for you.


Many people intuitively feel the benefits of psychotherapy. Talking with a therapist can decrease painful feelings as well as help in finding better ways to connect with others. Susan Vaughan's book, The Talking Cure, explains the neuroscience of talk therapy and how working with a therapist actually alters our brain functioning. It's a valuable resource in learning about the science behind psychotherapy.

June, 2018

Posted on Friday, June 1, 2018 at 03:51PM by Registered CommenterEli Zal | Comments Off


For therapists who want to deepen their ability to work with dissociation, and for anyone who wants a better grasp of their own experiences of "not being there", I highly recommend The Dissociative Mind in Psychoanalysis.  Edited by Elizabeth Howell and Sheldon Itzkowitz, this thoughtful book has articles ranging from historical perspectives, to clinical implications, to current research on dissociation and dissociative disorders.  I found this book very enlightening.

May, 2018

Posted on Wednesday, May 2, 2018 at 05:24PM by Registered CommenterEli Zal | Comments Off


I've spent much of my career working with survivors of childhood sexual abuse.  Advanced training in this area is particularly helpful, so I want to share with you information about this fall's schedule at Manhattan Institute for Psychoanalysis' Certificate Program in Trauma Studies.  Sandra Green and Lorraine Caputo, the program's directors, have developed an intensive and thoughtful two year training program.  I serve on the training committee and teach one of the modules.  If you are interested in training in this area, I encourage you to review the program's offerings.

April, 2018

Posted on Monday, April 2, 2018 at 02:30PM by Registered CommenterEli Zal | Comments Off


Sadly, approximately one in four boys faces some form of sexual abuse. Psychotherapy can help with recovery from such experiences. I've worked extensively with abuse survivors and have shared in their struggles to feel in control of their bodies, manage painful memories, and enter relationships as equal players. I've been struck time and again by the resiliency of survivors --- how so many carry on with their lives to find meaning and success. I'd like to mention MaleSurvivor, a wonderful organization that helps many in their healing process. I've been affiliated with the group as a Board member, an Advisory Board member, and as Chair of their international conference. I've seen first hand how effective MaleSurvivor is through its weekend retreats, interactive web site, and its bi-annual international conference which brings together survivors, their families, and professionals who work with survivors. I encourage you to look at MaleSurvivor's web site.

March, 2018

Posted on Thursday, March 1, 2018 at 09:19AM by Registered CommenterEli Zal | Comments Off


Excavating Pieces is a quietly touching memoir of growing up in a home under the thumb of a rageful, sadistic and sexually abusive stepfather.  Written with understated grace by Patrick Husted, I highly recommend this book.  Patrick is a former patient and when we worked together, I was often amazed and moved by how he survived the abusive landscape of his childhood with both resilience and dignity.  I hope you'll give yourself the opportunity to read this touching life story.

February, 2018

Posted on Monday, February 5, 2018 at 02:20PM by Registered CommenterEli Zal | Comments Off