Bloodlines: A Memoir

Coming in May 2024 everywhere books are sold!


A wave of disappointment washed over me.

In my mother. In myself. I’d taken my parents’ twenty-year age gap for granted, assuming that Mom, the younger of the two, would live at least as long as Dad had, to age eighty. Hubris. Why had we ignored the trouble between us, held our true selves back from one other? In effect, hid.”

— Excerpt from Bloodlines: A Memoir of Harm and Healing

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It should have been Tracey Yokas’s time to heal. With the recent death of her mother, she was given a brand-new chance to redefine herself and her happiness on her own terms. But just as she prepares herself to spread her wings, Tracey discovers that her only child, Faith, is battling issues of her own–carrying forward the legacy of disordered eating, depression, and self-harm Tracey is so desperate to leave behind.

Tracey is determined to save her daughter, but she has no idea how to reach her, and as their fragile family navigates a medical system and a societal fabric that fails innumerable families in need, she and Faith become near strangers to each other. Ultimately, it’s only when Tracey begins the hard work of standing up to her own history of rejection, low self-esteem, and longing does healing, for both mother and daughter, become possible. 

Carrying a message made urgent by the epidemic of mental health challenges now besetting millions of American teens each year, Bloodlines is a story about how waking up to the power of love can allow us to reimagine the past and fortify the present.

Advance Praise

“Tracey Yokas masterfully and emotionally weaves the tale: a daughter’s mental health diagnoses and a mother’s quest to support her. Bloodlines is a raw, honest look at the limitations a history of trauma can have on us and our loved ones. A painful and arduous road to recovery—for both mom and daughter—is also a testament to acceptance, hope, and love.”


– Jeni Discroll

Author of the mental health blog Peace from Panic

“Yokas connects the dots between various points of generational trauma to examine the ways in which we get caught up in narratives that began before we were born—and the ways in which such narratives can be rewritten. A relatable family story of mental illness and maternal love.”

– Kirkus Reviews

“In her journey to examine and understand the emotional scars handed down from her family experience, Tracey Yokas finds her truth and her voice. We witness the beautiful unfolding of powerful insight, courage, and wisdom. Tracey becomes a warrior to free her daughter, herself, and her family from a tangled web of illness and trauma.”


– F.D. Raphael

author of The Rock Stars of Neuroscience and founder of Mindfulness by Faithe

“The boy, across from his mom, said, ‘I forgive you.’

Why hadn’t I asked my mother about saying, ‘I love you”?

I could guess, after everything we’d now been through with Faith, after everything I’d read, and after everything I kept learning, that the answer was simple. And complex: I’d never learned how. My parents had never, to my knowledge, had these discussions with each other. Nor with me. No “I’m sorry.” No “I forgive you.” No “Please forgive me.”
Had that been what Mom had wished for, lying in a hospital bed, unable to speak, with longing on her face? After so many years, had she finally wanted me to know, clearly, unequivocally, that she loved me? At least the full phrase was the last words she’d heard me say.  

Faith sat beside me. I looked at her, yearning. I recognized the pattern: unspoken words between mother and daughter. I wanted to change that dynamic with Faith. Wanted her to know we could talk about anything. Everything. All the things I’d not thought to say. All the things she’d not thought to ask. There was time.”

— Excerpt from Bloodlines: A Memoir of Harm and Healing

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