A book to reduce stigma and increase compassion by marja bergen. Soon available at http://marjabergen.com/books.

“In her book I Will Not Hide Marja Bergen uses her strikingly clear and powerful voice to tell the story of her recovery in relation to bipolar disorder. With over 50 years of experience of receiving mental health care, she gives a starkly honest account of what did, and what did not, help her. she emphasizes the vital contribution of faith towards her recovery, and how she developed the Living Room program to help members of her congregation understand more about mental illness, and to actively support people with mental health problems. This is an inspiring story of Marja’s advocacy to end stigma, and a powerful tribute to her own strength and resilience.”  –  Professor Sir Graham Thornicroft, Psychiatry, Kings College, London

A sampling of questions the book will try to answer.

  • What is it like not to be accepted, though you have done nothing wrong?
  • How does it feel to be the only person excluded from social groups with no good reason given?
  • What does it feel like to be rejected?
  • How does it feel to be treated as though you have no worth or value—to be ignored, as though you have nothing to contribute?
  • What does it feel like to be a human being but not treated like other human beings?
  • How does it feel to be the first person blamed when wrong-doing occurs?
  • How does it feel to need a hug when no one cares enough to hug you anymore?
  • What does it feel like when life becomes so unbearable you want to die?
  • How does it feel when friends make light of your deep emotional pain?
  • What can you do when you know you’re a burden to your loved ones but you need support?
  • What do you do when you need to escape the cruelty of stigma?
  • Where do you go when you feel the urge to take your life but your friends don’t want to hear your complaints?
  • How do you feel when the seriousness of your condition isn’t taken seriously?
  • How can your relationship with Jesus grow as you go through your struggles?