An excellent book that all mental health professionals who work with the severely mentally ill should read or better yet listen to. The narration which is exceptional brought the story to a higher level of realism , which made a great book, exceptional !! Not only is this book informative , it's is also entrancing & highly compelling . Her autobiography is very inspirational not only for the mentally ill & those that work with the mentally but to all individuals who struggle to find meaning in their lives .
Never stop learning!
This is by far one of the best audiobook I listened to. It introduces me to concepts I would not have known otherwise. For instance, while psychotic, the sufferer is cogent and understand that people are violent towards him. Psychosis is therefore not a dream like state from which the sufferer awakes with no recall. It is rather a real life experience from the individual sufferer's point of view, and must be approached as such.
I like that it made me a better person in that I understand what it's like to suffer from this illness. It made me realize that we (the non-sufferers) violate the rights of these vulnerable people among us, by forcibly medicating them against their will, or holding them in restraints when we don't understand them. We so readily are willing to pronounce those we don't understand as dangerous, when in fact, we are the dangerous ones with delusions of what normalcy should look like. My hope is that every one reads/listens to Dr. Saks's personal account and appreciates it for what it offers: the sufferer's perspective. I also like appreciate how articulate Prof. Saks is, and I am certain that she is the best person to have spoken on behalf of people suffering from schizophrenia. These people often lack the language and emotional dimension found in Prof Saks's account. I am grateful to the author for having shared her experience. Thank you Elyn!!
I like her voice, and her intonations. They were appropriate and moving.
Yes. It made me cry, and it made me question, and think through preconceived notions of dangerousness, prejudice and stereotypes of the mentally ill. It changed me, and my views on this illness, and the people who suffer from it.
Many thanks to Prof. Saks!!! You are a survivor, a champion and a hero in my book!
This is a courageous, astounding and absolutely necessary firsthand account of the terror and social stigma associated with having a brain disorder, specifically Schizophrenia. It sheds much needed light on the common misconceptions and discrimination that still exist today within the mental health profession and the general public.
MY DISAPPOINTMENT WITH THIS BOOK IS IN THE NARRATION, NOT THE WRITING ITSELF- I highly recommend the physical version vs. audio, as the narrator speaks with a dry, sticky mouth that showcases the sound of her breathing and swallowing throughout- It gives the feeling of having someone stand too close while chewing loudly in your ear. (I would imagine this is NOT the way Mrs.Saks intended the book to be enjoyed.)
Nevertheless, I believe this is a book that should be read by everyone, not just those who live with such a disorder but anyone who would like to be a better and more compassionate person with the ability to see their community more fully- diverse, complex and without labels.
I first heard about Elyn Saks in a news story. Then after googling her I found a TED talk: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f6CILJA110Y
As a psychiatry resident I have been trying to improve my empathy and reduce any countertransference so that I might connect more with those patients I care for. I loved this book, as it has helped me immeasurably towards those goals. I loved how real she was in this book about her life, about some of her most personal and controversial details. I really think this book gives me hope to spread to my patients with schizophrenia. This book also talks in a persuasive way against the use of restraints. In my generation, they are no longer used to the extent she detailed in her experience. I believe that her work as a lawyer and academic has possibly changed that standard. This book also made me realize that connection, seeking to understand, even with someone in the midst of psychosis or between psychotic events is a pivotal part of the healing process. I appreciate her critique on psychiatry and will be recommending this book to medical students, residents and attendings I interact with!
I thought the narration was great! She was narrating a schitzophrenic person - and i think it added to the book. The story was fascinating and I have listened to it more than once. I like her reasons for writing the book. I highly recommend this book to anyone.
Great storyline filled with information useful to those diagnosed with schizophrenia or those who know someone with the disease. Liked every bit of this inspiring biography of Elyn who overcame many obstacles and settled into a gratifying life after a long road of trials and tribulations caused by her schizophrenia.