Books by Donna Boundy

Released: May 1, 1993

Conscientious, literate help for the ``millions of Americans'' who suffer from money-centered addictions. ``Like food and sex,'' says therapist Boundy, ``money is a powerful psychic symbol'' as well as a common focus of cravings. Through case studies and analysis, she demonstrates here how money- -or access to it—can come to represent love, nourishment, sexual potency, unresolved childhood longings, or even ``filth.'' It can also lend itself to behavior associated with obsession, repetition, denial, moodiness, increased tolerance for bizarre outcomes, distorted thinking, lies, secrecy, and self-destruction—all the earmarks of an addictive disorder. Like food addicts, says Boundy, money addicts fall into two broad categories—overusers and self- deprivers. But variations abound, and the causes and symptoms of each variation make for fascinating reading. The compulsive ``image shopper,'' for example, is ``trying to be seen.'' The compulsive bargainer is making a power play. Some compulsive spenders are ``getting rid of their money'' the way a bulimic gets rid of food; others are consuming to the verge of unconsciousness, like gluttons. Hoarders excessively fear dependency; underearners excessively fear loss. All these sufferers, the author claims, can find help by following a 12-step program of recovery and by learning to focus on the ``right use of money'' and on ``true wealth,'' which she delineates against the backdrop of ``a money- obsessed culture.'' Credible—and potentially useful to many. Read full book review >
Released: Feb. 1, 1989

A grim—and not especially successful—look at the effects of cocaine on the human body and mind, coupled with an urgent antidrug message. While use of other drugs is leveling off, cocaine has never been more popular; the authors claim that five million Americans use it regularly. They also state that it is one of the most addictive of drugs, a severe danger even to experimental users, and particularly to pregnant women. In clear, simple terms, they describe both its physical and behaviorial effects and the mechanism of addiction, sensibly suggesting that more jails and tougher laws fail to deter in the absence of a basic change in social attitude. They urge users and their friends to seek help, providing a list of addresses and hotlines. But, though the authors address teen-agers directly, they show them little respect (they say young people "tend to ignore the future consequences of any risky or dangerous activity") and frequently repeat facts or ideas; the case studies here are apparently fictional. Altogether, then, Washton's book makes important points, but several others do the job more convincingly. Read full book review >