where you realize that you have been edgy, a bit depressed, feeling unsettled. Yet everything in your life seems to be okay. You look for a cause, but you just can’t put your finger on it. Perhaps you should examine your recent past—six months ago, a year ago—and ask yourself, “What did I go through that was stressful at the time, yet I was able to deal with by suppressing my stress until that situation was over?”
“Aftershock” is a term coined by clinical psychologist Dr. Geri-Lynn Utter, who came to recognize this largely ignored scenario in many of her patients. As a subclinical level of the more familiar post-traumatic stress disorder, “aftershock” may underlie your present emotional stress, a delayed emotional response that affects many of us after common, yet big deal life events such as miscarriage, moving to a new city, divorce, or, for some people, the Covid-19 pandemic that has rocked much of the world.
The most urgent raison d’etre of Aftershock is to enlighten readers to the very presence of this psychological trauma—what it is and what causes it, how to recognize the symptoms, and how to heal when life’s stressors keep you in the center of the aftershock of a storm.


It’s only 20 miles from the Mainline suburb of Philadelphia to the area known as Kensington, but it may as well be a world away. The Mainline is one of Philadelphia’s most Tony sections, famous for mansions and tennis courts and Princess Grace Kelly. Kensington is a decaying, poverty-stricken, drug-drenched blight, a place some can’t escape, yet others escape to as they sink into a world of drugs and despair.
Meeting Philadelphia native Dr. Geri-Lynn Utter, PsyD. for the first time, it would be easy to assume she’s the product of the elite schools and glossy social life of the Mainline. But in fact, Dr. Utter grew up in Kensington, her father and her mother both struggled with drug addiction. She saw first-hand the torment of addiction. The violence of the “life.” The despair that there could be no way out except death by overdose.
Mainlining Philly is the harrowing story of how Dr. Utter survived the grim alleys of Kensington and became a respected mental health professional. Her unique insight into the nature of addiction gives her the tools to offer solutions to those addicted and the families who love them. At times terrifying, startling, and hilarious, Mainlining Philly is a ride on the wrong sides of the tracks that you won’t be able to put down and you will never forget.