The Ghost Garden: Inside the Lives of Schizophrenia's

The Ghost Garden: Inside the Lives of Schizophrenia's A rare work of narrative non fiction that illuminates a world most of us try not to see the daily lives of the severely mentally ill, who are medicated, marginalized, locked away and shunned Susan Doherty s groundbreaking book brings us a population of lost souls, ill served by society, feared, shunted from locked wards to rooming houses to the streets to jail and back again For the past ten years, some of the people who cycle in and out of the severely ill wards of the Douglas Institute in Montreal, have found a friend in Susan, who volunteers on the ward, and then follows her friends out into the world as they struggle to get through their days With their full cooperation, she brings us their stories, which challenge the ways we think about people with mental illness on every page The spine of the book is the life of Caroline Evans not her real name , a woman in her early sixties whom Susan has known since she was a bright and sunny school girl Caroline has given Susan complete access to her medical files and her court records through her, we experience what living with schizophrenia over time is really like She has been through it all, including the way the justice system treats the severely mentally ill at one point, she believed that she could save her roommate from the devil by pouring boiling water into her ear Susan interleaves Caroline s story with vignettes about her other friends, human stories that reveal their hopes, their circumstances, their personalities, their humanity She s found that if she can hang in through the first ten to fifteen minutes of every coffee date with someone in the grip of psychosis, then true communication results Their madness is not otherworldly instead it tells us something about how they re surviving their lives and what they ve been through The Ghost Garden is not only touching, but carries a cargo of compassion and empathy

10 thoughts on “The Ghost Garden: Inside the Lives of Schizophrenia's Feared and Forgotten

  1. Krista Krista says:

    I didn t set out to do this, but I have inadvertently created a forum that allowed the psychologically afflicted, medicated or self medicated, the walking wounded, to voice their truths Those who are ignored and stepped around on the streets, the homeless who cycle in and out of wards and through rooming houses, are hardly seen as human, and

  2. Bjørn Bjørn says:

    Life changing, heart breaking, important.The mentally ill are so often seen by the society as walking diagnoses Doherty s book, the stories of real people behind the diagnosis of schizophrenia, is extremely unusual in its approach she talks about those diagnoses as if they were human It doesn t sound like a lotbut it is.Doherty tells a story of

  3. Lori Spence Lori Spence says:

    I loved this book I normally prefer reading fiction as I normally find non fiction dry The Ghost Garden was anything but The story was gripping and very well written, filled with metaphors and perfectly chosen words I learned much about the terrible disease of schizophrenia but never felt I was being lectured to I became engrossed in the story of

  4. Ian Shaw Ian Shaw says:

    Susan Doherty s The Ghost Garden offers wonderful insights into the lives of people suffering from mental illness and does so in a way that does not demean them or devalue their humanity If anything, Doherty elevates the people, whose journeys she follows, to a level where the average person can begin to understand them For a group that it is far too

  5. Jamie Moesser Jamie Moesser says:

    Note I received an ARC of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review I read this book primarily as a way to do research for my own book, a science fiction novel with a main character sent to a state mental hospital where he meets and spends a lot of time with a character who has schizophrenia Ghost Garden provided what my in person, on fo

  6. Christine Christine says:

    I read this book in one sitting, which I rarely do Aside from the fact that it s compelling, gripping and absolutely unputdownable , it also stirred emotions that have stayed with me long after I finished it In both my work and my personal life, I spend a lot of time with people with severe mental health challenges Susan s perspective has made me look beyo

  7. Marilyn Marilyn says:

    What an extraordinary book Susan s compassion, generosity and warmth for these tortured souls and their families is evident throughout The stories are sad, at best, and nightmarish at worst Yet, Susan s insistence on hope and human touch save the book from utter despair Very glad I read this.

  8. Colette Connors Colette Connors says:

    Having just finished this amazing book I am so overcome with sadness that I cannot put my thoughts together to write a review at this moment I will highly recommend to all.

  9. Luanne Ollivier Luanne Ollivier says:

    Susan Doherty s recently released book, The Ghost Garden, is hands down one of the best non fiction books I ve read And it is one of my favourite reads of 2019.I work in the public sector, often waiting on those who have some form of mental illness, somevisible than others The Ghost Garden has given me a different perspectiveunderstanding of those living with menta

  10. Tobin Elliott Tobin Elliott says:

    It took me a long time to read this book, but not because it was bad Quite the opposite It s life changing.All my life, I ve been surrounded by lots of people with mental diseases, some diagnosed, most not Some displayed extreme moments of psychosis, some did not.My father My brother My sister My uncle A couple of aunts My wife My son.Me.So, reading this book was quit

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