Madness

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In her memoir, “Madness“, Marya Hornbacher  takes  the reader on  a journey  of her life with  Type I rapid cycle bipolar disorder. She explains the disorder as “when you are mad, mad like this, you don’t know it. Reality is what you see. When what you see shifts, departing from anyone else’s reality, it’s still reality to you” (Hornbacher, page 118).          Marya Hornbacher has experienced  almost every possible disorder.  By the time she reached her teenage years , she had  already  battled drug addiction, bulimia and anorexia, alcoholism, and cutting. In addition, she would have sporadic mood changes; she would   literally run around hyper and fully charged, impulsively saying things that  she knew didn’t make sense. This was followed by days when she would  just lock herself in her room  and sleep. As a child, she quickly realized that she was different. She had episodes where her imagination would take over her sense of reality. She tried to keep them to herself and never tell so that people" will go on believing that she is a real girl, not a fake one" (Hornbacher, p. 17). Marya feared that if she ever let on how she was feeling, then her parents would think she was in fact crazy and send her away. A child with bipolar was unheard of during the 1970's. Psychiatrists didn't believe children could have this illness., instead they viewed children with bipolar as out of control youths who were just troubled. Marya went to see a number of different therapists  to get  help.  She would tell them that she had moments when she felt she could fly , followed by moments when   she couldn’t even get herself off the floor. Each therapist concluded the same thing: depression.      It wasn’t until Marya  was in her early twenties that  she finally met with a therapist who  actually took the time to listen to what she was saying.  By the end of their first session, he concluded that she was suffering from manic bipolar disorder. Although it was upsetting to hear this,...
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