Families are the survival mechanism of the human species.

They are the container for all our emotions, love, rage, anger, empathy, and everything else. I am fascinated by the many ways in which we navigate our most important relationships. I have worked with and learned from top thinkers in this area, and I don’t belong to a school of psychology. I focus on the politics of relationships within the family, the transfer of information, of affection, or of sorrow.

I see myself as a mapmaker, sketching out the routes to conflict and acceptance, to anger and to love.

We all make wrong turns. I hope my books can help get things back on track.

I come from a family of psychiatrists and psychologists, and as an editor I published many landmark books in psychology and neuroscience. I worked with generations of psychologists, from Anna Freud to Mary Pipher, and with leading experts in neuroscience and human behavior. And then I felt compelled to write my own books and to offer my own insights.

The strange land of secrets and lies is dark, filled with sorrow and anger and the loss of trust. By telling the stories of Keepers and Finders, I shine a light on the dynamics of shame and betrayal, on deceit and denial. If you have learned a secret, you want to know more. So the lesson for Keepers is to tell the whole truth. Finders are challenged to deal with their new reality, their rage, and also the love that may now feel betrayed. Both parties can read stories of people who have overcome the sense of loss and guilt and treachery. If one reader, suffering from a revelation that rocks her world, gets consolation from my book, I will be glad. And if one person who is suffering from the pain of keeping a secret sees the pathway to revelation and reconciliation, I will be glad.

Write to Jane:
janeisay@janeisay.com