Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Book about psychosis / madness

  1. Dec 5, 2014 #1

    Monique

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    About a year ago I saw a book lying in the bookstore written by a female describing her experience of going through mental illness. From one day to the next she went into psychosis and had to be hospitalized. The story intrigued me (how the mind can distort reality), but I didn't buy the book at the time. Now I can't find the title, does it sound familiar to anyone?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 5, 2014 #2
    I read a book like this about twenty years ago and also can't remember the title. The woman in question actually became psychotic due to a massive untreated infection. Although someone eventually found her in her house and got her to the hospital where the infection was cured, she regarded the psychotic hallucinations and delusions as a sort of instructive "trip" and she wrote the book as a testament to the fact there was a kind of alternate reality. She felt she'd been shown mysterious mystical truths, and so forth.

    Another autobiographical book about psychosis by a woman is Kay Jameson's An Unquiet Mind. She became psychotic (manic with delusions of grandeur) over a period of a couple weeks, though, not overnight.
     
  4. Dec 5, 2014 #3
    I too am fascinated about how one might retell their traumatic experience of initial phases in schizophrenia. But it's hard to take how the transition between different healthy states of mind might have taken place; so the writer who may likely be a psychologist or physician may have compiled the book from his/her patients experience instead...It's because patients with serious mental health issues even after recovering I think would have very low chances to remember exactly what they have been through while those suffering from minor or initial signs of schizophrenia still can share their experience but definitely insufficient and varying among them. And yet, luring readers' mind into the world of something they can't normally explain or pay attention to during their daily routine seems like the mainstream of best sellers.
     
  5. Dec 5, 2014 #4
    This is an example of how different psychotic patients in 3 regions reported what they heard inside their heads. American patients suffer from unknown resources of violent voices while Indian ones are with their kin or ancestors' voices as reminders and those in Accra enjoy a world with their Creator.
    http://bjp.rcpsych.org/content/early/2014/06/17/bjp.bp.113.139048.full.pdf html
    That's pretty much explained by cultural differences but that many schizo-affective disordered people have to suffer violent voices even in their delusions is also tragic.
     
  6. Dec 6, 2014 #5

    kith

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor

    Your description reminds me of "I Never Promised You a Rose Garden" by Hannah Green / Joanne Greenberg.
     
  7. Dec 11, 2014 #6

    Monique

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    Thanks all, your replies helped me find the title: "Brain on Fire: My Month of Madness" by Susannah Cahalan .
     
  8. Dec 19, 2014 #7

    Monique

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    What an amazing book. I always have a hard time finishing a book, usually I stop reading after a few chapters, but this one kept me reading. It's interesting from a human standpoint, to know what people with psychiatric problems go through and to realize that what we often consider to be "mental disorders" are in fact physical. The writer was diagnosed as an alcoholic with a stressful job, which would be at the root of her problems, but the real cause is much more scary. Also scientifically this book is a great read and an eye opener. I recommend it to anyone who 1) knows someone with psychiatric problems, or 2) has an interest in how the brain works.
     
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook




Similar Discussions: Book about psychosis / madness
  1. Book about hypnotism (Replies: 4)

  2. Seriously mad (Replies: 52)

  3. March Madness (Replies: 3)

Loading...