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The Reading Room


FOR PARENTS  |  click to expand

Bipolar Teen

The Bipolar Teen: What You Can Do to Help Your Child and Your Family

AUTHORS: David J. Miklowitz PhD and Elizabeth L. George PhD

TOPIC: Adolescent Bipolar Disorder

Whether your teen is having mood problems but hasn’t received a diagnosis, has already been diagnosed but is just starting treatment, or has been in treatment for some time, you’ll benefit from knowing as much as possible about the adolescent form of this disorder. Know how to recognize episodes of the illness before they build, how to get your teenager the most up-to-date treatments, and how best to respond so that your teen’s condition is more likely to stabilize. Knowing the facts about adolescent bipolar disorder will help you accept and learn to cope with it.


I Hate You—Don’t Leave Me: Understanding the Borderline Personality

AUTHOR: Jerold J. Kreisman, J.D., & Hal Straus

TOPIC: Borderline Personality Disorder

TARGET AUDIENCE: People with BPD and their families

People with Borderline Personality Disorder experience such violent and frightening mood swings that they often fear for their sanity. They can be euphoric one moment, despairing and depressed the next. There are an estimated 10 million sufferers of BPD living in America today. For years, BPD was difficult to describe, diagnose, and treat. Dr. Jerold Kreisman and health writer Hal Straus offer much-needed professional advice, helping victims and their families to understand and cope with this troubling, widespread affliction.


Sick Can Be Fixed! Practical Information for the Parents of Children with Mental Illness From Another Parent

AUTHOR: Deborah Colleen Rose

TOPIC: Helpful information and tips about child/adolescent mental illness

This book contains practical information with common-sense ideas to help the parents and caregivers of children diagnosed with mental illness. Includes info on brain biology, how to speak with a doctor, types of treatments, communications, problem-solving and more. “What I did was put into a book all the information I wish I had had when my children were diagnosed,” says Deborah Rose, the author—who also is a member of the I AM H·E·R·E Coalition.

FOR TEENS  |  click to expand


Conquering the Beast Within: How I Fought Depression and Won...and How You Can, Too

AUTHOR: Cait Irwin

TOPIC: Teen Depression

For anyone in the clutches of the frightening beast that is depression, this book can help. In vivid words and images, Cait Irwin shares her own compelling story: how she struggled with clinical depression at age fourteen, was hospitalized, sought therapy, found the right medication, and successfully made the long, arduous climb back to good health. This powerful volume shares an inspirational message with all who are waging their own battles with depression: There is a way out.


When Nothing Matters Anymore: A Survival Guide for Depressed Teens

AUTHOR: Bev Cobain, R.N. C.

TOPIC: Teen Depression

TARGET AUDIENCE: Teens, but so rich with information that parents should read it, too

This book is very teen-friendly, filled with straight talk about depression and suicide. Personal stories of teens are interspersed throughout. At less than 100 pages, it is a very readable length for teens. The author, Bev Cobain, is the cousin of Kurt Cobain. Kurt's suicide was the third in their family, and Bev's own spiral into depression and suicidal intent nearly made her the fourth. As a mental health professional, she provides concise, accurate information, but in an engaging and easy-to-understand style. The book is divided into two sections: Part 1 - "What's Wrong?" describes the causes and types of depression and the connection between depressions, suicide and drug and alcohol abuse. Part 2 - "Getting Help and Staying Well" discusses different kinds of professional treatment, how they help, and how to stay healthy.

FOR ANYONE  |  click to expand


Cutting: Understanding and Overcoming Self-Mutilation

AUTHOR: Steven Levenkron

TOPIC: Cutting

TARGET AUDIENCE: Sufferers, parents, friends, and therapists

This book addresses a traumatic psychological disorder now affecting as many as two million Americans and one in 50 adolescents. It reveals self-mutilation as a comprehendible, treatable disorder, no longer to be evaded by the public and neglected by professionals. Using copious examples from his 20 years of working with this problem in his practice, Levenkron traces the factors that predispose a personality to self-mutilation: genetics, family experience, childhood trauma, and parental behavior.


The Lost Years: Surviving a Mother and Daughter’s Worst Nightmare

AUTHOR: Kristina Wandzilak and Constance Curry

TOPIC: Drug/Alcohol Addiction and Effects on Family

TARGET AUDIENCE: Families and friends of addicted

Kristina and her mother Constance have written a gritty, wrenching, starkly honest and emotionally moving account of addiction and recovery. This daughter-mother writing is no-frills, yet beautiful and utterly compelling. The Lost Years is a gift of deep honesty—a handbook for showing up to find yourself and to live responsibly.


When Someone You Love Has a Mental Illness: A Handbook for Family, Friends, and Caregivers

AUTHOR: Rebecca Woolis, MFT

TOPIC: How to successfully cope with the stress of mental illness and its impact on the family

TARGET AUDIENCE: Families and friends of people with mental illness

The feelings and situations that families of people with mental illness experience add up to a great deal of additional stress. Indeed, families and friends of people with mental illness often find themselves with headaches; stomach problems; and difficulty sleeping, eating or socializing—all common physical manifestations of stress. This book examines caregiver stress and offers help for successfully coping with it.