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Mommy I'm Still In Here
Raising children with bi-polar disorder

by Kate L. McLaughlin

      The adage "Truth is stranger than fiction" is certainly applicable in the case of Mommy I'm Still in Here: Raising Children with Bi-polar Disorder. Kate McLaughlin paints a picture of what appears to be a typical Norman Rockwell family who wakes up one morning to find itself trapped within a surreal image by Salvador Dali. In the course of a few short years, both of the McLaughlin teenagers find their lives overcome by severe cases of adolescent onset bipolar disorder. Despite a history of mental illness in the family, the author describes her shock as the lives of her near perfect daughter and later her son morph into something quite bizarre before her eyes.

In this emotional journey, I felt like a friend and confidant rather than an onlooker as I accompanied McLaughlin into the depths of her children's rapid-cycling mania and depression. Her vivid descriptions of the physical and psychological changes that occurred, adapted from a personal journal, are as terrifying as any horror movie - almost beyond imagination, yet true. For those dealing with bi-polar disorder in their own family, the details of day-to-day challenges in dealing with doctors, therapists and issues relating to medicines will prove particularly helpful. Mommy I'm Still in Here is also an excellent resource for anyone working with adolescents.

The Book

February 2008
Self help
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The Reviewer

Donna Satterlee Ross
Reviewed 2008
NOTE: Reviewer Donna Satterlee Ross is the co-editor of That's Life with Autism: Tales And Tips for Families With Autism and is currently working on a new book about autism and humor.
© 2008