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My Lovely Wife in the Psych Ward: A Memoir Kindle Edition
An honest and rewarding memoir of a couple's compassion and love for each other.-- "Kirkus Reviews"
Honest and heartfelt, My Lovely Wife in the Psych Ward tells the difficult story of a marriage tested by mental illness, and reminds us that true love is never easy.-- "Kyle Boelte, author of The Beautiful Unseen"
Lukach lyrically transforms our understanding of love, mental illness, patience, and devotion in this stunning memoir. With moving and touching prose, My Lovely Wife in the Psych Ward describes what it's like to have the picture of your life smashed in an instant and subsequently reassembled miraculously.-- "Mayim Bialik, PhD, neuroscientist, actress, author"
Lukach's rare combination of tenderness and ruthlessness is what makes this book more interesting than your typical illness narrative.-- "New York Times Book Review"
Narrator Josh Bloomberg is truly perfect. He conveys every emotion that Lukach expresses-devastation at Giulia's delusions and repeated hospitalizations, frustration with the inflexibility and inexactitude of the mental health system, sheer exhaustion and occasional resentment at being a caregiver, and joy at seeing the depression lift before his eyes in an aerobics class full of elderly Asian women. An important story and a lovely performance. Winner of the AudioFile Earphones Award.-- "AudioFile"
The deeply passionate account of the couple's journey through Giulia's psychotic break and recovery...Through it all, Lukach explores the fragility of the human mind alongside the resilience of true love and partnership.-- "Bustle" --This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.
From the Inside Flap
A heart-wrenching yet hopeful memoir of a young marriage that is redefined by mental illness and affirms the power of love.
Mark and Giulia's life together began as a fairy-tale romance. They fell in love at eighteen, got married at twenty-four, and started their dream life in San Francisco soon after. But when Giulia was twenty-seven, she suffered a terrifying and unexpected psychotic break that landed her in the psych ward for nearly a month. One day she was vibrant and well adjusted; the next, she was delusional and suicidal, convinced that her loved ones were not safe.
Eventually, Giulia fully recovered and the couple had a son. Soon after Jonas was born, Giulia had another breakdown, and then a third a few years after that. Pushed to the edge of the abyss, everything the couple had once taken for granted was upended.
An exploration of the fragility of the mind and the tenacity of the human spirit, My Lovely Wife in the Psych Ward is, above all, a love story that raises profound questions: How do we care for the people most important to us? What and whom do we live for? Breathtaking in its candor, radiant with compassion, and written with dazzling lyricism, Lukach's intensely personal odyssey through the harrowing years of his wife's mental illness is anchored by an abiding devotion to family that will affirm readers' faith in the power of love.--Mayim Bialik, PhD, neuroscientist, actress, and New York Times bestselling author --This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.
- ASIN : B01JYWTBJ0
- Publisher : Harper Wave; Reprint edition (May 2, 2017)
- Publication date : May 2, 2017
- Language : English
- File size : 1928 KB
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 320 pages
- Lending : Not Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #256,733 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
About the author
Top reviews from the United States
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I'm torn over this book. On one hand, any new resource is good. We have a dire need for more views on mental illness, and this writer/husband needed an outlet. It's one of very few books dedicated solely to the loved ones of those living with mental illness. My heart goes out to anyone dealing with illness of a loved one. Lukach has the ability to focus solely on his experience because he doesn't have to deal with the extraneous issues that quickly take over in 99.9% of US cases.
Three episodes/hospitalizations in the first five years of being diagnosed with a severe mental illness is not unusual, and the awful trial and error nature of psychopharmacology gets a little sunlight here. This book does best early on, when he's furious, scared and confused at the sometimes arbitrary, often misleading and always rigid rules of psychiatric care. I highlighted huge sections of these early encounters with hospitals and staff because despite the many who feel similarly, in my decades in the field, very little has changed beyond some nicer wording. So I cheered him for this.
My discomfort with the book came after that. By the end it seems like he thinks he's got it all worked out. Five years into severe psychiatric illness is a very short time. I don't even know that his lovely wife actually qualifies as severely mentally ill. She is able to hold down a job between her three episodes and *has* a between period. Of course it feels painstaking to all involved, but cancer of any stage feels painstaking, yet there are still stages. Then there's the ability this family has to quit jobs, pay out of pocket - not a single word about most people's biggest nightmare: insurance companies stopping their loved ones from getting the care they need. He need not tell anyone else's story, but his story is mild compared to most.
Everyone has a right to tell their story, but this one felt a bit pat in the latter parts, like he has learned what the right things to say are, and he's saying them, but if I had this guy on my therapy couch, I'd be asking some tough questions about his pretty words. He got his feelings out, and that's what I got from this book: his feelings. It's a very one-sided, tiny slice of the beginning of his family's mental health journey. I wish them well, but I can't say I'd recommend this book to many people who want to learn anything more than one lucky family's story.
Mark seemed to have written this book from his heart and owned up to honest frustrations and emotions that caretakers deal with. Through it all, his love for Guilia is evident. Some of the frustrations were things I experienced myself as a mom – being sick as a dog and crawling on the floor to take care of your kid, the enormous guilt of your kid being the first daycare kid to arrive AND being the last daycare kid to leave… so many examples were things that were “normal” parenting things to me. But the difference for Mark is the reason behind it all is so completely devastating. He struggles to go it alone while also worrying about Guilia’s recovery (will she recover?) and what happens after. I do wish that Mark would have shared more about the fact that he was also receiving psychiatric/therapy care, because its important to recognize there is no shame in reaching out for objective, non-partial help. So much of this book is a testament to regular people making it through devastating mental health issues. I would recommend this book to someone who’s dealing with being a caretaker as a comforting message of “you are not alone”, “someone else has felt similar fears, frustrations, anger and sadness”.
This story is a 5 star read because the writing is great, fluent, strong. The story is so personal yet shared with dignity. And because I’m rooting for Guilia’s healthy mental state so that this lovely little family can thrive without the fear of when the next time bomb will go off. I’m really rooting for them.
Top reviews from other countries
But thank you writing the book. Thank you for helping to remove the stigma. Thank you for helping so many of us not feel quite so lonely ... knowing that there are others out there having moments going through the same dark tunnel!