Karen Tyrrell's ME & HIM - A GUIDE TO RECOVERY is a great book for two reasons: first it contains a whole list of wellness tips, and second it tells a personal story with courage and compassion. And it does all that without preaching - just a lot of encouragement.
Frankly, I think Karen's tips ought to be tattooed on all our foreheads, whether we have a mental illness or not. I would just add this one: work with your body clock, not against it. But Karen's message goes beyond tips, crucial as they may be. Ultimately her message is that, if we wish to recover (whatever that means to each and every one of us) we need to take responsibility for ourselves. It's as simple - and as challenging - as that.
It is my great pleasure to welcome Karen to my blog.
INTERVIEW WITH KARREN TYRRELL - 14th MARCH 2013
1. Having written Me & Her - A Memoir of Madness, what prompted you to write this second book Me & Him - A guide to Recovery?
I started writing A Guide to Recovery two years ago, wanting to share my bipolar recovery and wellness secrets with everyone. The Me & Him memoir section was unplanned, arising from dramatic events in my personal life dating from December 2011 until late last year.
2. Of the two books you have now written, which one was the most challenging/scary for you to write and why?
Me & Herexposed my mental health history with the world: parent-teacher abuse leading to mania and madness, and diagnosis of bipolar and post-traumatic stress disorder. I made this choice to expose myself to help others on their journey to recovery.
Me & Himreveals the realities if living with someone with mental illness.Me & Him exposes my husband’s personal history, and his difficult choices in acting as my carer. I’m very protective of my husband and will fiercely defend him.
3. Does the title of your second book mean that you have moved forward in your own journey? If yes, in what way?
YES, Its a memoir on the realities of living with mental illness and the traumatic effects on your family. Plus thirty chapters of wellness advice of how to recover and manage mental stability and happiness on a day to day basis.
4. How does your husband feel about Me & Him - A Guide to Recovery?
He’s confident Me & Him will help many people.
5. For you, in what way does recovery and healing differ?
Recovery is a continuum. Ranging from simply accepting your diagnosis and treatment plan to fully managing your mental illness on a daily basis, being highly functional at home and at work.
Healing is much deeper: completely loving and forgiving yourself, and others.
6. What if there was one thing you would really like people to say about Me & Him, what would it be?
Me & Him - A guide to Recovery is for everyone. With or without a mental illness. We ALL need a wellness plan to stay healthy, happy and mentally balanced.
7. What if you were to write a third book (and a fourth) what could you imagine the title(s) might be?
I’ve considered Me & Them - A Guide to Overcoming Stigma and Me & Me - A Guide to Self-Love. In 2014, I’ll publish ME & YOU with the subtitle under tight wraps. In 2013/4 I’m bringing out a series of mental health books for kids.
8. In what way has writing Me & Her and Me and Him contributed to your own recovery?
I wrote my way to Recovery. Daily reflective writing became the driving force of my cathartic healing process.
Thank you very much Karen :D
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