Having lived with someone suffering from Bipolar Mood Disorder for over twenty years, Nina is better qualified than most to speak about the affect this condition has on relationships. From caring for her partner whilst he was suicidal with depression to visiting him in a state mental asylum after he was committed during a manic episode, she’s seen first hand the ups and downs of bipolar. This story is a journal account of her tumultuous relationship in amongst worldwide travel and finally marriage. Juggling motherhood, a career in journalism and photography, and a partner who refused treatment, she has been left with some battle scars. However, she has persevered and through her book, support groups, and community workshops on Bipolar Awareness her knowledge is now helping fellow supporters conquer and befriend this monster she calls Bipolar.
If you’re expecting a “poor me” story full of horror stories, you won’t find it in this book. In fact, most of the first part of the book is stories about Mensing and her then-boyfriend Bradley as they travel on a shoestring budget. Occasionally, Bradley would pull something frightening during a manic phase, but mostly I was just thinking, “How cool to be able to travel like that.”
The closer we get to present-day, though, the more we read about specific incidents and how bipolar affects not just the person with the disorder, but everyone around him. Mensing stresses over and over in her book that it is crucial to find not only a reputable professional to prescribe and regulate medications, but also a support system. Not just family and friends who truly understand what’s happening, but also others who have experienced bipolar illness. She also lists facts and statistics about Bipolar Mood Disorder to help readers understand what it is and is not.
As someone who has not had any personal experience with a person who is manic-depressive (as far as I know), I found this book to be an eye-opener and a little frightening, to be honest. It’s definitely worth your time if you’re looking for books to help you learn more about Bipolar Mood Disorder.
About the book:
Title: A Manic Marriage
Author: Nina Mensing
Publisher: Porcupine Press
Release date: July 1, 2010
Where I got the book: From the author for free in exchange for an honest review.