Recommended Reading

Book List

Here is a list of recommended reading about paruresis and related topics. We have included links to Amazon for convenience but you may, of course, prefer to purchase your books through your local independent book shop, or to borrow them from your local library.

The Secret Social Phobia: Shy Bladder Syndrome (Paruresis): Second Edition

Steven Soifer, George Zgouridges, Joe Himle, and Nan O'Brien

This revised edition offers strategies and easy-to-follow exercises to help you desensitize yourself to fear-producing situations and feel more comfortable relieving yourself using graduated exposure.

ISBN: 979-8616491404

Amazon Link

Mind Over Mood: Change How You Feel by Changing the Way You Think (Second Edition)

Dennis Greenberger and Christine A. Padesky

Discover simple yet powerful steps you can take to overcome emotional distress - and feel happier, calmer, and more confident.


Amazon Link

Notes on a Nervous Planet

Matt Haig

Looking at sleep, news, social media, addiction, work and play, Matt Haig invites us to feel calmer, happier and to question the habits of the digital age.

ISBN: 1786892693

Amazon Link

Overcoming Anxiety: A self-help guide using cognitive behavioural techniques

Helen Kennerley

This popular guide offers a self-help programme, written by one of the UK's leading authorities on anxiety and based on CBT, for those suffering from anxiety problems.

ISBN: 1849018782

Amazon Link

Overcoming Social Anxiety and Shyness, 2nd Edition

Gillian Butler

A self-help guide using cognitive-behavioural techniques to cover a wide range of social anxiety issues. One of the well-regarded ‘Overcoming’ series.

ISBN: 9781472120434

Amazon Link

Pee Shy to Pee Free

David Soucy

A very comprehensive and practical workbook, consistent with the UKPT approach.

ISBN: 978-1448612550

Amazon Link

Mindfulness: A practical guide to finding peace in a frantic world

Prof. Mark Williams 

One of the very best primers on mindfulness

ISBN: 978-0749953089

Amazon Link


James O’Neill

At once a case-history, a novella, and something more than either - a remarkable story of what two people can do for each other if they can experiment with trust.

See Guardian review 

ISBN: 978-1780723945

Amazon Link

The Real Work On the Mystery of Mastery

Adam Gopnik

In The Real Work: On the Mystery of Mastery American writer Adam Gopnik has written a personal memoir of skills he mastered later in life and his relationships with his teachers. The chapter entitled "Relieving" deals with Adam learning how to master his paruresis. 
Listen to him talk a little about this experience.

ISBN: 1324090758

Amazon Link

Not Your Normal Family

Fiona Barrington

An autobiographical account of the difficulties of growing up and living as an undiagnosed Asperger Syndrome woman; Fiona also suffered from shy bladder until receiving therapy in her late teens. She went on to gain fulfilment by adopting two Down’s Syndrome boys. An inspirational read.
ISBN: 978-0755204212

Amazon Link

Bathrooms Make Me Nervous

A Guidebook for Women with Urination Anxiety (Shy Bladder)
Carol Olmert

"For more than 40 years, I suffered from a severe case. Almost every waking moment my attention was focused on everyday rituals - the when, where, how and whether I could urinate that day and the consequences of not being able to do so. When am I going to find that next safe bathroom? If I'm thirsty, can I risk drinking something now? As a result, I missed out on all kinds of life-affirming activities and opportunities. In short, my condition ran my life - it defined who I was to a large degree - and I felt very alone and isolated because of it. After many years of struggle, I have now completely recovered. As a result, my life has changed in many positive ways. I want to share my long journey with you through this book. In it I provide female and male paruretics - and those who treat and support them - with the wisdom that I and others have gained from our personal experiences with this condition."
ISBN: 978-0615240244

Amazon Link

When the Body Says No: The Cost of Hidden Stress

Dr Gabor Maté

With compassion, warmth and empathy, Dr Gabor Maté draws on deep scientific research and his acclaimed clinical work to provide the answers to critical questions about the mind-body link - and illuminates the role that stress and our emotional makeup play in an array of common diseases.

ISBN: 978-1785042225

Amazon Link

Theatres of the Body: Psychoanalytic Approach to Psychosomatic Illness

Joyce McDougall

A book that traces symptoms arising in the cross over of body and mind.

ISBN: 978-1853431074

Amazon Link

Against Self-Criticism

Adam Phillips

A psychoanalytic essay on underlying causes of illness from Unforbidden Pleasures.

ISBN: 978-0374278021

Amazon Link

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Last review date: January 2023.
Next review date: January 2026.

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