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Envíanos un poco de amor

Nos encanta ser generosos. Nos encanta saber que las personas que no pueden pagar este libro pueden leer todo el libro gratis en línea. Pero también nos encanta recibir generosidad. Nos ayuda a saber que nuestro trabajo es valorado y que a la gente le importa que podamos seguir poniendo cosas bellas en el mundo. El Colectivo de Consentimiento es una empresa social independiente. No recibimos ningún financiamiento por nuestro trabajo. Nos enorgullecemos de generar ingresos vendiendo nuestros recursos y utilizando las ganancias para financiar las cosas por las que no nos pagan. Cosas como la lectura gratuita de 'El coraje de ser yo', 'The courage to be me' y nuestro trabajo de justicia social a medida que enfocamos nuestros esfuerzos en cómo las personas se curan de las injusticias causadas por el daño sexual y el abuso en las relaciones. Podríamos hacer más de esto con su apoyo.


Dr Nina Burrowes

Founder The Consent Collective

Donación sugerida £5


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The story behind the book


Have you ever sat in a room with someone who was showing raw courage? If you have then you’ll know that experience can stay with you, move you, inspire you.

In early 2013 I sat in a room with courage. The woman who sat opposite me looked physically and emotionally uncomfortable. She struggled to be there. She struggled to sit still. She struggled to find the words. But stronger than her struggle was her determination. She found it difficult to sit with me and talk, but she was determined to continue. And so she carried on telling me her story.

I was interviewing this woman as part of a research project I was carrying out for Portsmouth Abuse and Rape Counselling Service (PARCS). My job was to evaluate some group therapy that PARCS had just delivered for women who were on the waiting list for counselling. These women had all been raped or sexually abused. They were all taking the first steps towards rebuilding their lives.


The women I interviewed told me stories of feeling isolated and broken; of entering group therapy and realising that they are not alone; of learning how we all respond to trauma and realising that they are not crazy; of rediscovering the bits of themselves they had lost as part of their effort to cope with the abuse; of realising that their old ways of coping were now holding them back; and of finding the courage and compassion to hope for a better life for themselves. There were tears during the interviews but there was laughter too.

Having watched this particular woman struggle through the interview and been moved by her courage I asked her why she had chosen to come and talk to a stranger about her experiences of therapy. She told me that she felt hopeful for the first time in a long time. She said that if the research project somehow helped one other person then everything she has been through would be worth it.

I heard her.

Why make an illustrated book?

I have always been a doodler. When I was undergoing training in counselling my notes from the therapy sessions would invariably be in the form of cartoons. I've always found it easier to convey the human side of life in drawings rather than words. So I knew that an illustrated book would probably be the best way for me to convey the humanity, courage and hope that I wanted to be able to share. 

There was one slight problem - I couldn't draw.


Whilst I doodled a lot my drawings were of matchstick people. I didn't have a natural talent for drawing and I assumed that meant I'd be stuck with matchstick people for the rest of my life. But one day I was invited to challenge that assumption by learning how to draw. I was introduced to Drawing on the right side of the brain and my journey into illustration started. After many hours of practicing I could see that being good a drawing was like being good at anything in life - it takes a choice, practice and time.


My natural doodling 'style' prior to learning how to draw


In 'Drawing on the right side of the brain' you're invited to create a 'before' and 'after' drawing. These are mine. 

Despite the fact that I was getting better at drawing I knew my new skills were still a long way from the book that I was busy imagining. So in the summer of 2013 I crowdfunded in order to be able to pay some professional illustrators to help me make the book. I managed to raise enough money to have most of the book illustrated by the very talented Katie Green, Alexander Bertram-Powell, and Jade Sarson. It was pretty intimidating placing 'okay' drawings next to their clear talent. But I guess that was all meant to be part of the ride. 


On 9th March 2014, as a way of celebrating my birthday I completed work on 'The courage to be me'. I was full of tears, smiles, pride, and... not a small amount of apprehension. What would other people think of the book? Had I done the work justice?


It didn't take long to find out.

"I owe a debt of thanks to Dr Nina Burrowes for this book. As someone who detests self help books, I was completely unprepared for the profound positive impact this had on me immediately (especially the science bit). It is the most constructive resource I personally have had access to"

"An uplifting hopeful book about the human strength to overcome"


The Guardian

"When I first read Nina's chapter 2 - I'm not mad - I was moved by how she just "got it", right in front of me were my own feelings and fears that I dared never speak of, that I held in me because I thought it was only me who felt that way... suddenly it wasn't just me anymore and that is why this book is so special."

The sequel to 'The courage to be me'

How do you follow-up 'The courage to be me?'. In 2021 I built my answer to that question. I wanted to create something that had just as much heart as the book but could take the material further and offer people some pragmatic steps on their healing journey.