I am a book junkie, especially when it comes to my office. I really like to have a lot of resources relating to the work that I do as a chaplain on hand. I have learned quite a bit from reading various titles on grief, trauma, traumatic stress, abuse, and fire & police families. I have learned a lot in my education but there is always room to learn more. Reading books helps me better myself as a chaplain.
Denise over at Laughing with Spoons wrote a beautiful post called I Am. She lists the different feelings that are commonly experienced by spouses of firefighters, emts and police officers. Part of the list came from the book The Fireman's Wife, a book that I had the honor of reading before it was released and a book that I recommend to firefighter wives quite a bit. Her post got me to thinking about other books that I recommend to families of emergency service workers. There are so many dynamics that come into play when it comes to these special families. It's so important that husbands and wives and signifigant others educate themselves on the special issues that face an emergency worker and their family. So many of the situations that we are subjected to as emergency workers are situations the average citizen could never imagine. These situations can bring up serious issues if they are not handled with diginity, grace, patience, understanding, and a lot of love. The first step to this is through communication. Communication is enriched by knowledge and knowledge can be obtained through some wonderful reading materials. Here is a list of some of the books that I highly recommend:
A wonderful book full of resources, strategies, and suggestions for loved ones.
This is also a great resource book for police families.
From the website: In Harm's Way offers concrete strategies for dealing with some of the most difficult aspects of loving someone in a dangerous occupation. Step-by-step, women reading this book can learn to examine and cope with fear, loneliness and emotional stress; discover strategies for handling time, money, sexual intimacy and sexual jealousy; address children's needs and build a strong, healthy family life; manage the readjustment issues that can occur during homecoming; learn to communicate more effectively about the issues that matter to them most; and develop helpful ways of communicating with their partner about the life and death experiences he faces on the job. In Harm's Way does not sugar-coated or oversimplified the many hardships facing families of men in dangerous occupations and readers are guided in adapting the suggested coping skills to their individual personalities and the unique needs of their particular situation.
This author also has other great books on post traumatic stress and survivor's guilt.
A book that discusses in detail the unique emotions that a police officer experiences because of the job. Even though this book is written with the police officer in mind, it is also an important read for firefighters, EMS workers and their families.