For 10 years, I have been writing a memoir about my relationship with my son who has bipolar disorder. The book has gone through many permutations over the years as the circumstances of our lives have changed. The ending keeps evolving.
As a memoir writer and teacher I know there is no such thing as a static self and both my son and I have experienced many different “selves” during this writing. He has read parts of the manuscript, disagreed with my account of certain episodes we’ve shared, and as a result, I have made a few changes where I agreed my perception of a particular event was distorted by my lens as a therapist. But that’s the thing about memory and memoir, isn’t it? We each have our own perspective depending upon our particular emotional lens at the time.
Many of you know that my book has been rejected repeatedly by print publishers. Some editors wrote that they didn’t understand why a mother would choose to write such a book. Of course, most people who don’t deal with mental illness on a daily basis fail to understand it’s a family disorder. No one in the family is left unscathed by the misfiring of their loved one’s synapses.
My intention in writing the book has always been to give information and perhaps companionship to those who travel this same journey: parents, grandparents, siblings, spouses, children and the loved one most affected by “fire in the brain.” So I decided to self-publish just the first part of the book as a Kindle short entitled The Emergence of Bipolar Disorder: A Mother’s Perspective through amazon.com. I understand you can download it to both your Kindle and an iPad. I hope you find it of value.
- Bipolar Disorder Q&A (blogs.psychcentral.com)
I just bought a copy of that book for my kindle. I can’t wait to read it and your other book “Hooked on Hope” i am a member of the National Assoc of Mental Illness or NAMI and stigmatization is what they fight as an Association. they know it is a family problem and they do everything they can to educate and follow up with family members of the mentally ill. they have also been key in getting legislation passed to help the mentally ill. I hope you have heard of this organization.
Take good care and thank you for spreading the word that USA needs better handling of mentally ill people. And for educating the public. I am so sorry it took this suffering to do it.
Thanks for your support and I hope you find value in my Kindle, The Emergence of Bipolar Disorder. Yes, I’m also a member of NAMI and have taken their Family 2 Family workshops which are terrific educational opportunities for families dealing with mental illness.
That’s great! Glad you know of it. 🙂
Well said Maureen–I do not have a KIndle or Ipad but will continue to read thoroughly your excellent blog.
Maureen, I forwarded this to some friends that I think might really appreciate this. I don’t do Kindle or have an iPad, but this is tempting me to step into the future that way. I’m a slacker around technology.
Love and many blessings to you. I applaud your efforts to raise awareness for families who suffer with mental illness. Tayria Tayria Ward, Ph.D. 20 Battery Park, Suite 500 Asheville, NC 28801 828-329-0853 firstname.lastname@example.org http://www.tayriaward.com
Thanks, Tayria, for your support. Some folks have been able to download it onto their computer by going to amazon.com to The Emergence of Bipolar Disorder, clicking on “buy”, and it comes up somehow through amazon cloud. It’s all a mystery!
Bravo! It takes courage to publish information about one’s family that many try to hide because of the cultural stigma about mental disorders. I am not a mother, but I know that often a child with a mental disorder often disrupts the marital relationship between the father and the mother. Hopefully if fathers read your book they will have better insight into what their spouses are experiencing and will give compassion rather than rejection to the mothers.
I appreciate your long engagement with this soul-wrenching, soul touching, experience, Maureen. It isn’t easy to expose one’s feelings and family ‘secrets’, but in doing so, you help others ‘come out’ of their own darkness and discover there are others who struggle as well. Such bravery diminishes the destructive stigmas associated with mental and physical maladies, and opens the door to constructive support and healing. Congratulations and Thank you!