OVERVIEW

Get an exclusive, first look inside our new book, Unraveled Roots for Men: 4 Causes of Damaging Behaviors, along with accompanying videos, facilitators guide, and more! 

Join Support After Abortion’s Men’s Healing Strategist, Greg Mayo and Karin Barbito, Special Projects Manager, to hear directly from the authors on how to tackle abandonment, addiction, abuse, and codependency head-on.

They’ll take you behind the scenes of the video production, share a sneak peek of the final product, and reveal insights into the writing process. Discover where the book is available, its various formats, and how this men’s edition evolved from the original Unraveled Roots. Plus, learn about exciting upcoming opportunities related to the book. 

UNRAVELED ROOTS FOR MEN: 4 CAUSES OF DAMAGING BEHAVIORS

“Today we’re talking about something we’ve been working on for a long time,” Greg said as he introduced the new book produced by Support After Abortion, Unraveled Roots for Men: 4 Causes of Damaging Behavior. 

Unraveled Roots for Men: 4 Causes of Damaging Behaviors Book Cover

 

WHAT WAS THE INSPIRATION FOR UNRAVELED ROOTS?

As background, Karin described the inspiration behind Unraveled Roots. Support After Abortion started as a program in a pregnancy center. At that time Lisa Rowe, our Clinical Strategist, was the Executive Director of the PRC. She previously had worked as a clinical social worker in a high school program for teen moms. Lisa observed that some of the recurring clients the PRC was serving were former students of that high school program. Only these young women were seeking help with second and third pregnancies. And their lives were more chaotic than when she first worked with them in high school. 

Karin shared how a perplexed Lisa questioned the efficacy of how the young women were being served. Karin said, “We were not serving them well, so we started to brainstorm. No one wants to grow up and be a drug addict, but they do. No one wants to grow up and abuse their partner, but they do. No one wants to find themselves pregnant and then choose abortion, but they do.” 

She highlighted how through their brainstorming, they realized that there was something underneath the symptoms that were presenting, root causes contributing to the repeated behavior patterns. 

Karin excitedly declared, “And that’s where the book came from!” She explained that Support After Abortion did all of the production of the original Unraveled Roots client and facilitator video series in house. She enthusiastically shared that the program was then pitched to BrightCourse, a video-streaming curriculum service used by 2,000 social service agencies, counselors, pregnancy centers, and others. They were equally excited and picked it up. “That was one of the first things we got on BrightCourse. And seeing the success of the woman’s book, how different lives have been as a result of that, we just knew that we had to create something for men,” she said.

WHY CREATE A MEN’S VERSION OF UNRAVELED ROOTS?

Karin asked Greg to share a little about why he thinks having a men’s edition is so important. Greg responded, “We have to start with a little bit of the frustration that I experienced, and a lot of men experience.” He explained how, in the past, much of the material related to abortion healing has been geared toward women, highlighting how even material marketed to men was written by women or repackaged for men. 

“There’s nothing wrong with that in this sense, but the idea is that men speak differently and use different phrases. Different ideas and concepts resonate differently with men. And men often find healing in different ways too,” Greg said. 

He explained how the catalyst for developing the men’s book began in a co-ed Unraveled Roots group where he noted the difference in verbiage between the male and female participants. He realized the impact it was already having and strongly believed that more men could be reached with a version specifically for men, written by a man, that touched on the same roots. 

Karin affirmed what Greg shared about the differences between men and women, adding, “When I would ask Greg, how do you feel about that? He would say, Karin, I don’t feel anything about that, but I can tell you what I think,” highlighting it as an example of how they differ. 

HOW IS UNRAVELED ROOTS FOR MEN DIFFERENT?

Greg shared that when the team began developing the book and the accompanying client-facing and facilitator-training video series, there were specific components they knew needed to be included, beginning with being written from a male perspective. Greg acknowledged himself as the author of the book, and shared that it has been a collaborative project involving a Support After Abortion team over the past year. 

He said that two other important components were the inclusion of real stories of men’s experiences, with names changed for privacy, and using examples that resonate with men. He explained how the Support After Abortion and production teams had many conversations during filming about whether the stories were being portrayed in a way that would speak to men to ensure they were staying true to their purpose. 

 

 

Behind the scenes, actors filming real stories from the book

Greg shared how all of the production crew and actors were male, varying in age and backgrounds, which leant itself to having other male voices to consider as they worked through the scenes, affording a greater level of authenticity.

Behind the scenes with all male crew and actors

Greg shared a clip from one of the client-facing videos, highlighting the producer’s narration and actor portrayal of “The Root of Abandonment.”  He emphasized the quality of the production and the resulting companion videos, saying, “It was very important to us to have a high level of quality, because in order for it to be truly effective, it had to be relatable to the men watching the video, and I think we achieved that.”

AVAILABLE FORMATS

Next, Greg discussed the various formats Unraveled Roots for Men is available in: paperback and Kindle on Amazon and digital download, and bulk ordering on Support After Abortion’s estore. He was excited to share that Audible would also be carrying the book in audio format in the next few weeks. 

He emphasized the importance of making an audio format available as men have shared they find the convenience of listening on their commutes beneficial. 

A LOOK INSIDE THE BOOK

Sample pages from Unraveled Roots for Men

Greg showed the audience a few samples taken from the book’s pages. In this example, the subject of the chapter focuses on “The Root of Abandonment.” He explained how the core text centers on the root issue – defining it, talking about it, and going through ways it shows up in real life. From there, he said, you read a Truth Story of one man’s struggle with that chapter’s root issue. Additionally, The Light Through the Branches stories inspire hope through overcoming. 

Karin pointed out that The Light Through the Branches stories are a new feature from the original Unraveled Roots book. She said these secondary stories are also included in the client-facing videos using actor voice overs to B-roll. She felt this addition enriched both the book and the video series. 

Greg concurred, noting that the varied stories allow more men to relate to the content, as issues manifest in different ways. He stated that this approach was aimed at reaching as many men as possible. 

At the end of the chapter, he explained, is the “Digging Deeper” section. This area is meant for thoughtful contemplation and provides space for capturing reflections through writing. Greg recommended that men incorporate journaling into their lives, sharing that he himself journals regularly. 

He noted that in the “Digging Deeper” section, the first step is to acknowledge what happened. Next, it addresses the lies men may have believed about themselves based on the event. Greg explained how it then guides them to recognize the behaviors they chose or engaged in because of those lies. From there, it focuses on finding the truth and changing those behaviors. He highlighted the importance of each of the steps in unraveling the roots of damaging behavior. 

Karin interjected to emphasize the importance of the order of the steps in the “Digging Deeper” section. She explained, “The reason they’re in the order that they are is that awareness is the first step in the change process. If you’re not aware of the roots of the things that happened in your life when you were growing up and how it made you feel about yourself, you can’t change it.” Greg agreed, highlighting that the first step is admitting there’s a problem and acknowledging your current state. 

COMPANION MATERIALS FOR UNRAVELED ROOTS FOR MEN

Companion Journal and Facilitator Guide Covers for Unraveled Roots for Men

JOURNAL 

Greg introduced the addition of a companion journal to the book as well. Available through the Support After Abortion Estore, it can be downloaded and filled in electronically or printed for traditional use. 

Greg reiterated the importance of journaling, especially at the beginning of a recovery process. He said that he believes journaling is crucial for reflecting on thoughts and feelings over time. Greg explained, “When you hit a benchmark, say you go through an Unraveled Roots group, you can look back on what your thoughts and feelings were when you started. That’s part of the reason I think journaling is so important.”

He shared a personal anecdote to illustrate his point: “When I went to my first Adult Children of Alcoholics meeting at 18 years old, I wrote a letter to myself about that first meeting. I found that letter over this past weekend, and that was 36 years ago.” This experience underscored for him the long-term value of journaling in the recovery process. 

FACILITATOR GUIDE

Greg discussed the release of a facilitator guide, which has been in the works for the past several months, describing it as a valuable tool. 

The guide, available through Support After Abortion’s EStore, provides instructions on setting up and managing a group, and includes sample intake forms, welcome email templates, and weekly session guides. It is downloadable and printable right from the website, aiming to ensure facilitators’ success in leading an Unraveled Roots for Men group.

SELF-GUIDED UNRAVELED ROOTS FOR MEN

Karin guided the audience on navigating to Support After Abortion’s “Abortion Healing Center” webpage and the new Unraveled Roots section for both men and women, where users can anonymously access self-guided, self-paced resources. Users can choose to order the book from Amazon or download it from this page.  They can also download the fillable journal and view the videos.

Unraveled Roots for Men, client webpage

RESOURCES & TRAINING FOR PROVIDERS

Karin directed providers to the Provider Training Center, Unraveled Roots section. This area offers both the facilitator-training and client-facing videos, facilitator guide, and options to download or purchase the book and journal. Providers access these resources using a login name and password. 

She highlighted that Unraveled Roots for Men will soon be available on BrightCourse. It will include quizzes on both the facilitator training and the client-facing videos to ensure you “know how to be that client’s advocate.”

Greg thanked Karin for sharing all of the ways to access the content and said, “I’m also thankful that we created so many different things around the book. All the things you just talked about – the videos, the journal and the facilitator guide –  because it really illustrates a commitment to helping men find healing, to helping men find a better path. A path out of their pain, a way to untangle their roots, a way to move forward.”

HOW TO USE UNRAVELED ROOTS FOR MEN

Greg discussed the various ways to use Unraveled Roots for Men. One option, as Karen mentioned earlier, is to do it independently using the book and client videos, which provide direction and bring the content to life. 

He shared that some pregnancy resource centers have success working with clients one-on-one, especially when they may not have enough clients to form a small group. This approach, involving a “mentor” or “coach,” offers focused attention and is a valuable method for going through the material. 

Greg also highlighted the small group option, typically recommended for six weeks, that can be offered virtually or in-person. He reminded the audience how Support After Abortion could be of assistance in setting up virtual groups, which will enable providers to offer flexible options for healing. He stated that this variety in approaches – independent, one-on-one, and small group, both in person or virtually – underscores the commitment to providing multiple pathways to healing. 

FACILITATING AN UNRAVELED ROOTS FOR MEN GROUP

Greg and Karin discussed the structure of each week for small groups. Greg explained that typically, the first week involves introductions and Chapter 1, Why am I here? Greg emphasized the importance of this question, stating, “Each person needs to honestly answer that question because at the end of the group, we’ll revisit those answers.” This reflection allows participants to track their growth and understanding throughout the group. 

Small group weekly structure

He explained that week two focuses on the Root of Abandonment, defining it and exploring its impact through a true story and a series of thought provoking questions. 

Week three, he said, delves into the Root of Addiction, examining its effects from youth into adulthood, and applying the same process as the previous chapter. 

Week four addresses the Root of Abuse. Greg cautioned that while “all of the chapters can be triggering, this chapter can be hard to go through,” especially for those going through the material independently, as different forms of abuse are discussed. As with the previous chapters, the same process is used to guide participants in finding truth and changing behavior. 

In week five, the Root of Codependency is covered. Greg explained how the chapter defines the term in an easy to understand way and uses real life examples to break it down further. 

Karin shared her own experience leading codependency groups, noting how many participants initially deny being codependent, much like she did before her own recovery. She emphasized that almost everyone exhibits some form of codependency and highlighted the importance of recognizing it, allowing participants to decide whether to continue their current behaviors or make changes for personal growth. 

Greg discussed week six, explaining that it was designed to revisit the initial question, Why am I here? He emphasized the importance of reflecting on the reasons for starting the journey, the insights gained, and the behaviors changed through addressing the four different roots. 

Greg noted that this reflection aligns with “finding purpose in your pain,” asking participants to consider their next steps after experiencing healing through the Unraveled Roots process. 

He explained that week one, normally marked by trepidation and anxiety, contrasts with week six, which can be emotionally heavy as participants reflect on their progress and contemplate their future actions. 

Summarizing the six week process, Greg addressed those considering the group, stating, “If you’re thinking this is an entry-level group, it absolutely is by design.” The goal, he explained, is not to delve deeply into each subject but to help participants find some healing, peace, and pathways forward. 

HOW DOES UNRAVELED ROOTS BENEFIT ME OR MY CLIENTS?

Karin highlighted positive outcomes from people who had been through Unraveled Roots. The first was from a group participant who said, ‘Unraveled Roots’ helped put the pieces together as to why I even got to the point where I was facing the abortion decision in the first place. My trauma was so much deeper than I imagined, and just becoming aware of that is just so healing. Karin emphasized that understanding the abortion decision as a symptom of deeper issues was crucial. 

 A 74-year old coaching client said, ‘Unraveled Roots’ has given me a whole new life. Karin noted how remarkable it was that people could experience such profound changes even later in life. 

And a provider who offers Unraveled Roots to their clients said: After going through ‘Unraveled Roots’ myself, I know it can be an essential tool for helping clients break generational cycles and understand themselves and their decision-making. Karin stressed the significance of this feedback, noting that unhealthy behavior patterns often pass from generation to generation, and recognizing these patterns is key to breaking them.   

Greg agreed with Karin, acknowledging the abundance of positive outcomes. He noted that just as unhealthy behavior patterns can be passed down generationally, individuals also have the power to create generational healing. “You can be the catalyst for that, you can be the jumping-off point for generational healing,” he said. Greg emphasized that it all comes down to a decision, stating, “Am I adjusting my sail this way or that?”

HEALING FOR YOURSELF

Greg encouraged viewers to prioritize their own healing, emphasizing the importance of self-care with a quote from Lisa Rowe, LCSW: “You can’t pour from an empty cup.” 

He explained that just as you must put on your own oxygen mask first in an airplane emergency, you must also find your own healing before effectively helping others. “It is impossible to truly and effectively help another person on their healing journey until you’ve walked your own,” he stated.

He announced his upcoming Unraveled Roots for Men group starting in July as an opportunity for men who want to lead, to begin their own healing journey. 

Karin emphasized the importance of this opportunity, urging men to sign up quickly for Greg’s group due to its limited capacity of 10 participants. She highlighted that this would be the first Unraveled Roots group exclusively for men – and the fact that it will be led by Greg, the book’s author – and encouraged men to secure a spot. 

CAN I GET TRAINED TO FACILITATE SMALL GROUPS FOR MEN?

Greg shifted the focus to helping clients heal, highlighting the new coaching program for male providers. He noted that Karin has successfully run a one-on-one coaching program for women for nearly a year, and now a similar program is being introduced for men. Greg explained that he would be working with men individually, guiding them through the process of facilitating Unraveled Roots for Men or Keys to Hope and Healing, whether in a group or one-on-one setting. Men can email Greg directly to learn more or to sign up for coaching.

CLOSING

Greg encouraged everyone to “get a copy of the book, read it, and reach out for further discussion.” He invited everyone to contact him or Karin via email, emphasizing the availability of direct communication with the authors, encouraging anyone interested in facilitating to get in touch and seek their assistance.  

Q & A HIGHLIGHTS

At the end of the presentation, addressed questions from the audience. Here are a few highlights related to Unraveled Roots for Men:

Q: Should men do Unraveled Roots for Men first or Keys to Hope and Healing?

A: It depends on the individual. Some men may first need to address childhood issues like abandonment or addiction through Unraveled Roots before tackling abortion-related behaviors with Keys to Hope and Healing. Others may start with Keys to Hope and Healing to clear emotional wreckage from an abortion, which can then reveal deeper issues suitable for  Unraveled Roots. Each healing step can uncover new areas for growth, encouraging ongoing healing efforts. 

Q: What is the sweet spot for Unraveled Roots? Would the 6-7 week group be appropriate for men as a follow-up to an all-day healing retreat?

A:  We have learned that retreats are like drinking from a fire hose. You come out of those on an extreme high note, so a follow-up to that kind of experience is a brilliant idea. At a retreat, you are digging deep for 8-9 hours a day; there isn’t a lot of processing that goes into it. It’s an experience, an encounter, so having it followed by another resource like Unraveled Roots is a really smart idea. 

Q: We are just getting male volunteers into our center and they’ve never facilitated. How do we get them ready to lead Unraveled Roots for Men?

A: The easiest way is to email me and enter them into the male coaching program. Let us walk them through the process of getting ready to facilitate so they can do an impactful job.

NEXT STEPS

Click here to watch the video of this webinar.

Click here to go to the self-guided Unraveled Roots for Men resources

Click here to to to the facilitator Unraveled Roots for Men resources

Click here to register for the next Men’s Healing Matters webinar.

Click here to register for the next Abortion Healing Provider webinar.

Click here to access Support After Abortion’s Resource Library.

Click here to explore Support After Abortion’s services, resources, and training for Abortion Healing Providers.

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