Emotional Survival For Law Enforcement by Kevin Gilmartin

Smug Sorry

New Member
This book should be included in the police training manuals. The book is terrific and shows why law enforcement officers (LEO) are the way they are. The book gives some wonderful insights into the personal and professional life of a cop. Along with the LEO, their spouses or girlfriends/boyfriend should also be made to read this book. It would help to bring some sense of sanity into the lives and families of LEO.

Rainbow Sweety

New Member
Emotional Survival is a good read. Written by an ex-cop himself, the words carry a lot of weight. The author has touched upon many aspects in the life of a law enforcement officer. I read and reread this book. But the book made more sense when I heard the presentation by the author himself. I was able to understand some finer points which were mentioned in the book. I believe that the information that is presented in the book is applicable in every walk of life. Worth recommending to friends and families of law enforcement officers.

Guitar Guts

New Member
Kevin Gilmartin’s Emotional Survival is a good book and helpful. The only issue I have with this wonderful book is the stereotyping of cops. Reading the book gives an impression that all the cops are of a certain type and can be boxed into one group. Stereotyping can be useful if you are illustrating any particular point, but it does not always work and can end up oversimplifying the human psyche.


New Member
Truth be told, I was swayed by the fact that Emotional Survival was written by an ex-cop and a behavioral scientist when I went to get this book in my library. Unfortunately, the book did not turn out as per my expectations. The book was educational and helped me have new insights into the life of an officer, but I somehow felt it was falling flat. Another thing that got me was the use of certain terms, one example being “Hypervigilance Biological Rollercoaster.” I would have preferred using simpler terms.

The book is excellent and a must-read for law enforcement officers and their families, but a one-time read for commoners.

ZStar Princess

New Member
Emotional Survival by Kevin Gilmartin’s is one helluva book. The basic premise of the book is straightforward. The author focuses on “Hypervigilance Biological Rollercoaster.” It is not rocket science. What Gilmartin wants to say is that when the cops are on duty, they pick up new skills and finetune their existing skills for making themselves aware of their safety and various other factors. When the cops get off-duty, they end up doing exactly opposite of what they do during duty hours.

Similarly, when on duty cops are alert, humorous, energetic and very involved. But when duty hours are done and dusted, the same cops become tired, isolated, detached from normal life and may end up being couch potatoes.

Gilmartin also talks about the need for cops to have some off time, a time when they are not hyper-vigilant and have normal outlook toward life as rest of human beings. This recovery period is essential as this enables a cop to remain mentally alert and avoid dragging their professional life into their personal life.

To sum up, an excellent book that is a must-read for all cops and their family members. I would gift this book to all my friends and family members in law enforcement.


New Member
Coming from a family of law enforcement officers (my father, my cousins and even my wife is a cop), I was mighty thrilled when I got this book. We have seen our share of emotional outbursts, and I just wanted to know if it is common among all officers and was it something limited to my family. I am happy that this is the case across many law enforcement families.

Coming to the book, this is an excellent book. Period. The book is crisp and well organized which made it an easy read. It touched upon all the trigger points present in a family that has law enforcement members. Emotional Survival is not only useful to officers but could also be helpful to anyone who is working in a high-stress environment. It explains the biological reasons why an officer acts in a certain way when on duty and opposite when off-duty.

This book offers some great ideas which can help a person avoid becoming a victim of the stressful work environment.


New Member
Emotional Survival by Kevin Gilmartin is a book worth reading. For starters, the book is a well-written little book; the author is not wasting anybody’s time! He explains in simple terms the psychological and physiological effects of policing. Yes, there is some repetition, but it is for a good reason in this case. The information Gilmartin provides can potentially help officers have a more balanced life, which is vital as it would help in preventing any burnout and help in having a healthy family.

The author does a great job of offering insight for officers’ family members as well as spouses. This book is for those officers who are stressed out and have no idea how to go forward. Reading this book would help you to start regaining control of your life, both personally and professionally.

Bad Ass

New Member
As a family having a law enforcement officer amongst us, we were not worried about our loved one’s professional life, we were more worried about the personal life and a few years into the job had made our loved one a detached person. We were at our wit's end trying to understand how to deal with the emotional outbursts of our loved one. During this emotional period, I came across this book in the self-help section of my library.

Intrigued by the title, I started reading it and got hooked to it. The book had answers to all our questions. It had painted an accurate picture of an officer, and some of the advice given in the book are gems. The author focused on burnouts and explained in simple terms, how the professional needs end up eating the personal needs of an officer which in the end can destroy career, family, and life as a whole.

I recommend this book to everyone who has a law enforcement officer in their family as well to others who want to gain insights into the psychological aspects of an officer’s life.