The Thin Line Between Madness and Sanity

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Vol: 3, Issue: 1

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Valtierra, Stephanie
An Unquiet Mind; Kay R. Jamison; Behavior and Behavior Mechanisms; Mental Disorders; Personality and Social Contexts; Psychiatry and Psychology; Psychology
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Dr. Jamison tells us the story of her struggle with manic-depressive disorder, also known as bipolar disorder, in her memoir, An Unquiet Mind: A Memoir of the Moods and Madness. Jamison gives us the perspectives both of the patient and the healer.... Mood swings started plaguing her life as a teen. Jamison did not see these mood changes or the persistent depressions as serious problems. She believed that these mood changes were just another part of her, something by which she could be defined. The mood swings not only began to define her, but also connected her to her father and sister, who also suffered from these mood swings. The symptoms soon turned into advanced manias, depressions and suicide attempts. Medication was an option and could make her life “normal,” but this meant that she would not experience the invigorating highs and the accompanying devastating lows. This highly educated doctor became just another patient.