On the last day of winter in 2005, John committed suicide in his car on a lonely side road of the Blue Mountains to the west of Sydney, Australia. He was six months shy of his thirtieth birthday. It was the culmination of nine years of struggle for John and his wife, as he battled undiagnosed mental illness, a gambling addiction, and an earlier suicide attempt. Despite his wife's love and attempts to understand his condition, in the end nothing could save John from his demons.
Tragically, John’s story could be anybody's story. In Australia, around 2,100 people commit suicide every year; up to 12% of people affected by mental illness take their own lives (compared with an average of 1.7% for the whole population), and suicide is the main cause of premature death among people with mental illness. But the effects of suicide are even more far-reaching. Its impact on those left behind is frequently devastating and lifelong.
The author knows this first-hand. Marrying Bipolar is the account of a wife’s struggle to understand the events in her husband’s life that would eventually lead to their marriage breakdown and his untimely death.
Natasha’s experience watching her husband struggle with the complexity of mental illness, has led her understand the deadly role denial has to play, for both sufferer and partners. In the process, the author addresses her own search of ways to address denial of the darkness that resides in all of us, and the compassion needed to heal and rebuild lives after enduring.
REVIEWS & ENDORSEMENTS
Honest, raw and touching. ~ Amazon Customer, Amazon
Finally got to read your book Natasha. Congratulations on publishing this extremely inspiring and superbly written story! ~ Ondrej Pavlu, Facebook
What an amazing read! Raw and honest. I highly recommend this book. Thank you Natasha for sharing your story. ~ Sharon T, Amazon.com
A very real and personal recount of a person's (Natasha's) life with a partner who had an undiagnosed mental health disorder. Her story will bring tears to your eyes, make you smile during the happy times and feel frustration and sadness, that was felt by Natasha, during her partnership and marriage. Her story is one of romance, tragedy and above all self-actualisation, understanding and forgiveness. I loved reading Natasha's autobiographical account of her life, married to someone with a mental illness. Highly recommended! ~ Amazon Customer, Amazon
What an eye-opener this book was. It reveals, in very simple language, the constant struggles of a person suffering from bipolar while at the same time illustrates a spouse's unconditional and tender love and compassion for her sick husband. Moreover, it expresses the far-reaching repercussions when a person decides to take his own life, whether it be spouse, family or friends. Raising awareness and encouraging people with a mental illness to seek help is extremely important especially in our modern society. ~ Amazon Customer, Amazon
An honest, vulnerable and empowering read shining light into a hidden area of society. I think this book will touch everyone as mental health disorders affect loved ones, friends, family and spouses. Thanks Natasha for sharing your very personal account. ~ Anikiko, Amazon
The straight forward approach of Natasha's writing handles amazingly well such a complex and emotive story. Her honesty is so brave it makes it hard not to examine the lives of people close to you who may also be in pain and prompt you to ask if you can help.
I did not put the book down and highly recommend it. ~ Amazon Customer, Amazon
A very personal and touching insight to living with a person struggling with mental illness and the effect it has those who are close. ~ Amazon Customer, Amazon
Hi Natasha, I finally finished reading your book yesterday.
Chapter 11 (Back to Me) I sobbed line by line.
Thank you for sharing your intimate story, warts and all. What a struggle it was living with John's illness. Not an easy life for the sufferers of mental illness, nor their partners and families.
Big congrats - I just wanted to hug you tightly yesterday. (((Hugs))). ~ Rhonda Valentine, Facebook
Life's greatest teacher, and karma's greatest teaching tool are the relationships that we form and work through in our short time on Earth.
This book is a frank and honest insight, not just experiences within a relationship, but into how her essence as a being was weaved by her own nature into, and through another's life. And the pain, growth and revelations that followed in the aftermath of one very challenging karmic relationship.
Stuart Ruthven, Spiritual meditation teacher, psychic teacher, healer
http://spiritualhealingmeditation.com.au/ ~ Stuart Ruthven, Spiritual meditation teacher, psychic teacher, healer
This book is a rare, intimate and revealing journey that has taken courage and stripped back self-deception and ideology to face the very challenges many people avoid yet deeply reflect to free themselves from suffering into peace and freedom. An honest and enriching read.
~ Ani (Anikiko) Neradilkova, kinesiologist and musician