Baffled by Love


bbl-sidebar-coverFor three decades, Laurie Kahn has treated clients who were abused as children―people who were injured by someone whom they believed to be trustworthy, someone who professed to love them. Their abusers―a father, stepfather, priest, coach, babysitter, aunt, neighbor―often were people who inhabited their daily lives.

Love is why they come to therapy. Love is what they want, and love is what they say is not going well for them.

Kahn, too, had to learn to navigate a wilderness in order to find the “good” kind of love after a rocky childhood. In Baffled by Love, she includes strands from her own story, along with those of her clients, creating a narrative full of resonance, meaning, and shared humanity.


Baffled by Love will be released on June 1st 2017. 

Please check your local independent bookstore for Baffled by Love.
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“A sensitive and wise book. Laurie Kahn explores the devastating experience of having been molested by people you love and treasure, who simultaneously are the source of pain and betrayal. Baffled by Love is about the healing power of sharing, exploring and finding words for one’s self………A deeply comforting book.”

Bessel van der Kolk MD, author of New York Times Science bestseller The Body Keeps the Score: Mind, Brain and Body in the Healing of Trauma


“Laurie Kahn bravely challenges the paralyzing taboos around love and psychotherapy. Her extraordinary achievement rests on wise insights, tender honesty, eloquent prose, and perhaps most of all, on the well-timed telling of her own compelling struggles with betrayal and love.”

—Jennifer Freyd PhD, author of the award-winning book Betrayal Trauma:  The Logic of Forgetting Childhood Abuse

“I feel in my bones that this is a work of oceanic empathy and insight and importance―a highly personal yet deeply professional major book that has the potential to shape many lives.”
Thomas French, Pulitzer Prize winner author of Juniper, Zoo Story

“This is a love story and a beautiful one. Laurie has done a marvelous job of tracking the processes of pain, healing, and love in her clients and herself. I would recommend it to everyone.”
—Don Catherall PhD, author of Emotional Safety: Viewing Couples Through the Lens of Affect

“Baffled by Love is a powerful collection of beautifully wrought stories of the psychotherapy of traumatic experience. Laurie Kahn is a gifted clinician who listens to her patients with both her head and her heart. She has much to teach newly hatched and seasoned clinicians. The pain and confusion in people with lives filled with interpersonal abuse, the kind that led Joan Baez to declare that love was just a four-letter word, gently and kindly wafts off these pages. Wise and compassionate, Kahn shares pieces of her own story while warming your heart. Don’t stay baffled by painful love; learn about the core of what it means to be steadfastly related to another person while helping them sort out their life in the midst of betrayal and unbearable pain.

Richard A. Chefetz, M.D. President of the International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation (2002-03), He is the recipient of ISSTD’s Pierre Janet Writing Award for his book Intensive Psychotherapy for Persistent Dissociative Processes