Rita J. Battat


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Winner 2016 IPPY Bronze Medal Award in Psychology/Mental Health

What do Elvis Presley, Princess Diana, and Vincent Van Gogh have in common?

Less than eighteen months before her birth, Princess Diana’s parents tragically lost a son, John Spencer, just ten hours after his birth. Vincent Van Gogh was born on March 30, 1853—one year to the day after a stillborn son given the same name. Elvis Presley was born a twin. His brother Jesse Garon was stillborn.

Many are only now learning the term replacement child, how widespread the phenomenon is, and the extraordinary repercussions which can come from growing up in the shadow of a lost or impaired sibling. And yet we all interact regularly with individuals struggling to understand their place in this complex family dynamic.

It could be a family member.

A co-worker.

A friend.

You might even be thinking, “That sounds like me.”

Replacement Children The Unconscious Script provides a thoughtful window into the fascinating mind of the replacement child. With powerful first-hand accounts and amazing stories of famous replacement children, this is a must read for anyone who is, knows, or works closely with a replacement child.

Order your copy now, gift one to a friend, and explore the nuanced and often misunderstood unconscious script of those living to fill the void left in a family.  


Email: Battat342@aol.com


In Replacement Children: The Unconscious Script, the authors bring together the best of the research, clinical studies, and personal stories to give a comprehensive overview of the replacement child syndrome. This book will give parents, therapist, and replacement children a better understanding of how to navigate this complicated set of circumstances and provide much-needed information, guidance, and support.
Katie Couric, Journalist and broadcaster

Parents opt into vulnerability when they decide to have children, but siblings have not set out with that clarity. They nonetheless inherit their parents sense of agony win a sibling dies or is disabled, even when the parents make every conscious effort to protect them. This nuanced, vital, and insightful book will help not only parent struggling to build a family in the wake of a loss but also the children who struggle to understand the sadness of their households.
Andrew Solomon, award-winning writer and lecturer on psychology, politics, and the arts

The compelling stories weaved throughout this groundbreaking book make this topic relatable not only for individuals experiencing themselves as replacement children but for anyone who does grown up in a family where it was hard to feel truly recognized and appreciated for who you are. It’s a definite must read!
Robi Ludwig, nationally known psychotherapist, author, and award-winning reporter

Replacement Children: The Unconscious Script is a compelling and unusual mix of direct rich testimony of many who have ‘served’ as replacement children, pieces of biographic and autobiographic materials of well known public figures who were replacement children, patients’ therapeutic experiences and therapists’ perspectives. It is valuable reading, not just for all who have lived some form of replacement experience, but surely instructive for mental health professionals and a lot become familiar to obstetricians, pediatricians and family physicians.
Albert Cain, Ph.D

Professor of Psychology and Director, Child Bereavement Project, University of Michigan

This informative and heartfelt book sheds light on a phenomenon often as neglected as the plight of it subjects – and experience often overlooked because it is hidden in plain sight.
Jack Schwartz

veteran journalist and author of The Fine Print: My Life as a Deskman.

One of the major strengths of this book is that the authors have extended the classic definition beyond its original meaning to include children who have to “live for two” when a surviving sibling is incapacitated by illness or infirmity or children who have been adopted after a couple is unable to conceive. This book is a superb contribution.
Sylvia R. Karasu, M.D.
Clinical Professor of Psychiatry, Weill Cornell Medicine

…Sincere, wide ranging, and enlightening review of an important topic that touches countless individuals and families.
Foreword Review

A profoundly moving and insightful journey into the dynamics of losing a child, grieving a sibling and, most of all, finding one’s place in a home that has been bereft of joy.
Shefali Tsabary, PhD

New York Times best-selling author, ” The Conscious Parent”, clinical psychologist and international speaker

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