Some News

So, as many of you know, I’ve been preparing to head back to university this fall and most  believe that it is to Trinity Western University. However, because of finances and needing to be closer to my mental health care team and family, I’ve chosen to apply and have been accepted to Northern Illinois University in Dekalb, Illinois. I thought that making this decision to  transfer (again…ugh) would totally bum me out yet, I find myself at peace and pretty amped up to start off fresh in a new place; I’m excited to see what new things I’ll learn and get to explore. To my close friends in Canada, I’ll miss you and I dearly hope I’ll see you again sooner rather than later (keep in touch too with me!). To my future friends in Dekalb, I hope we get up to some crazy, fun adventures together while getting to know each other. I appreciate prayers from all and warm wishes on this new expedition to corn country… and I’ll try to be better at posting 😉


Small Moments Build Up to Something Beautiful

Lately, I’ve been down on myself. I’ve had getting my driving licence as one of my main goals this summer and I haven’t reached it yet. I’ve fallen into the ‘let’s compare myself with others’ trap too. Everyone else seems to have it all together and I’m still plodding along, little old me. What have I done?  I moaned about this to my counsellor a couple of weeks ago since I’m going to be meeting up with an old high school friend. It’s so silly of me and insecure of me as well (so what else is new, eh?). But, I got to thinking of all things I have done and I surprised myself. I’ve travelled all over the Pacific Northwest, seen California on a road trip (where I drove!), Oregon, Washington, and Iowa. I’ve been to the national rain forest, Annacis Island, and to beautiful British Columbia where I hiked Mount Seymour. I’ve seen aquariums- both natural and artificial- and I’ve been to concerts for Flogging Molly and Creedence Clearwater Revival. I’ve studied two years of applied linguistics; dabbled in political science, TESOL,  and learned how to properly say hello, my name is Jennifer, thank-you, in Mandarin (among other things). I’ve partnered with refugees from Afghanistan and Pakistan and Ukraine through tutoring them in English and taking the citizenship test. I’ve partnered with the homeless in Spokane by walking with them literally daily and learning about their choices and dreams. And, I’ve met and built relationships and shared life lessons and learned some life lessons in turn from the people I’ve come across along the way throughout the years. I’ve adventured to physical places since 2010 and it’s only recently that I’ve come to know the adventure that is stability and of knowing myself. Upon reflection, I don’t always appreciate this new adventure nor do I even like it sometimes but, an adventure it is. I’m learning to live faithfully with uncertainty and to find moments during the day that might be considered small or insignificant yet build to something spectacular and beautiful.

I work at McDonald’s as a crew person and am still working on getting my licence and Bachelors’ degree.

I used to think that was all I am and all I can experience throughout the day. I limited myself in this box of ‘not yet arrived’ as if there really will be a point of ‘arriving’.  I used to believe this silly idea that once I attain that driving licence and that degree, I’ll have arrived and be super fulfilled and happy.

It’s simply not true. I’ve been learning to find joy, happiness, and fulfillment in the little things right now not far off in the future.

The first few moments in the morning as the sun filters through my curtains and fills my room with a warm, calming glow brings me peace as I begin my day; the conversations I have with my regulars as I pour them their usual cup of coffee are the highlight of my days at work. Roy, he likes his coffee with 6 creams and has a brother in law in the hospital and a sick, bedridden wife at home. He is also an artist and will spend his time sipping on his cups of coffee and doodling while chatting with the others he meets up with at the restaurant. Then, there are Louann and Jerry. They’re a sweet couple who comes in everyday and orders the same thing but the conversations we have are as varied as the flowers in a garden. Then there’s the elderly mother and son duo who come in once a week. She likes to share what she’s decorating in her home lately and her son just smiles and rolls his eyes. My heart and spirit are nourished when I see my ninety-year-old regular come in. She is a sweet old woman who will hold my hand and remind me to be and stay beautiful on the inside and how to live a balanced life. Her pearls of wisdom are something I cherish. The moments of a goofy remark or smile from my co-workers lift me up when it’s a particularly frustrating day and the warm embrace from my Mom and Dad when I return home fill my heart up. My Mom always does her best to make this house feel like home.

I don’t know what all of these moments ultimately build up to exactly but, I believe they’re something beautiful. Who knows? I’ll just have to stick around and see this new adventure through, this adventure of noticing and cherishing the seemingly small and insignificant things.

What about you? Do you notice anything that seems small or insignificant at first glance in your life that can be a build up to something beautiful? Do you feel like you limit yourself too with the box you’ve put yourself in? I’d love to hear or read about it in the comments below or if you’d like to message me through email or Facebook messenger, please do!

A Sudden Change; A Necessary Respite

I’ve withdrawn from all of my classes except for one and re-located back to the Chicago area. It was a tough decision. A necessary one I needed to make. I’ve struggled all semester with my bipolar disorder and chose to withdraw early in order to take care of my health by being closer to my medical care team and my family. My parents are very loving and supportive and have been encouraging and helpful each step of the way. I’m blessed to have such wonderful parents. My younger brother has also been encouraging and will soon join us in the middle of December after he graduates.

I’ve had some time to reflect and think over the past few days while driving across the country from Vancouver, BC to Chicago, IL. While preparing for my parent’s arrival in BC, I couldn’t feel much. I was filling out paperwork to withdraw from courses, packing, and completing the last week of work at the local McDonald’s. I knew that it was the right thing to relocate and withdraw early but I couldn’t feel anything except for very brief moments of deep sadness.

After saying tearful goodbyes to my closest friends, Elise and Michaela, my parents and I loaded up the rental van and drove across the country back to the States.

The scenery was beautiful. We saw a lot of this:IMG_3363.JPGAs we drove across the country and saw parts of the Rocky Mountains, numerous cows (some sheepies too), and wide open prairies, I began to feel again. I felt deep sadness at leaving my friends and British Columbia behind. I felt optimistic about resting and beginning again fresh. Upon arriving in the Chicago area and having been here a couple of days, I’ll admit that negative thoughts have weaseled their way into my mind. I know they’re lies. I read an article a few weeks ago written by Maria Colon, who shared the lies that creep into her thoughts when she’s having a rough time with her bipolar disorder. She then goes on to say what the truth is. Here’s a link to read her article if you’re interested:  4 Lies I Tell Myself When I Feel Like I’m Losing the Battle Against My Bipolar Disorder

I was inspired to do something similar. It’ll be a good reminder to myself and maybe an encouragement to someone else out there?

Lie #1: I didn’t work hard enough. I should’ve pushed myself harder to “pull through.” I’m weak.

This is what I often tell myself -even when things happen that are beyond my control such as my health. I feel like people will say I should’ve tried harder to get better while continuing my studies and working, that I just threw in the towel when things got bad.

Truth: Knowing and accepting my limits and boundaries when it comes to my mental health is crucial for living well and being able to succeed in my studies as well as maintain healthy, positive relationships with my friends and family. “Pulling through” would make my episodes worse and create more issues for me to deal with down the road. It could even mean a stay in the hospital. Admitting I need help and a break from things isn’t weakness; admitting these things is a strength.

Lie #2: I’m almost 27 years old with no degree, no job, no significant other- not even a drivers’ license! Compared to the “normal, average person” I’m a failure. I’m ashamed.

This is the lie that’s been on repeat in my mind since arriving back here in the Chicago area. Being able to work and obtain a degree have been the two most important things to me. I’m excited to be certified as a mental health counsellor someday and help others. It’s also what one talks about when socializing with friends and acquaintances. I’m going to see an old friend tomorrow and I’ve been agonizing over what to talk about with her. “Hi! Great to see you…so good to hear about your business, husband, and hobbies… Oh me? Well I had a manic episode two weeks ago and am taking a break from my university courses to rest and recover and regroup….” Yeah that’ll go over well is what my negative mind says.

Truth: I’ve nothing to be ashamed about. I’ve not failed. In fact, I consider it a huge success I was able to handle my manic episode so well and not end up in the hospital. I’ve always felt comfortable talking about my bipolar disorder at school and with friends. Why should I feel any different with my old friend? Why should I compare myself with them? We each have taken different paths and have made different choices. Sure, I don’t have a degree or a job currently but, I now have some free time to not only focus on resting and recovering but, I now have more free time to catch up on some reading, painting, sewing, and knitting- doing things I love to do. I’ve even submitted some of my poetry to the Poetry Foundation to be published (I’ll hear back from them soon 🙂 ).  I’m taking a break. I’ve not quit school. It’ll still be there when I get back to it when I’m ready. And it’s all right it’s taken me longer than the average “normal” person. What’s “normal” anyway and why would I settle for that?

Lie #3: I’m almost 27 years old (bordering 30!) and haven’t accomplished/achieved anything! I’m useless, worthless.

This is the lie that I tell myself right after telling myself I’m a failure. It’s difficult to see clearly when the majority of my friends are still in school, about to graduate, and/or married/popping out kids, etc. I don’t have a degree or anything. How have I contributed to society?

Truth: I’m not useless, worthless. I’ve had the privilege to positively influence and build relationships with others through my workplace and through my job at school working in the West Coast Collegium  commuter student lounge. I’m passionate about building relationships with others, lending a listening ear, and showing people they’re stronger than they think they are, empowering them. I don’t believe what I’ve contributed so far to society can be quantified or measured- and that’s ok! Besides, I’m young regardless of what my anxiety riddled mind will tell me. I was inspired by this Chinese male model, who’s 80! Check out this link: Deshun Wang
Our age need not define our worth because we have inherently intrinsic worth created in the image of God.

Thank you for reading about the lies I tell myself and the truth behind them. I’ll strive to remind myself what’s true and right as I move forward in this life. I also am challenging myself to post at least once a week in this blog. Here we go!


A New Week

This new week has been a lot nicer. I’ve felt as if the weights around my neck and chest have lifted slowly but surely. I still wake up wanting to go back to sleep but, with my counsellor’s help, I’m learning to practice accepting and confronting my feelings. I’ve reflected on what it means to be balanced a lot this week. I realized that I thought to be balanced or “normal” I’d feel absolutely amazing and want to jump out of bed everyday. But, that’s not realistic or “normal,” whatever normal is anyway. This is the middle of the semester. Midterms have just finished up and the study frenzy and anxiety has let up thankfully. I’m now preparing for two group projects in two different classes and trying not to let those assignments get me down with worrying about them. Working as a student leader in the West Coast Collegium has also been a bit tough. I work three shifts throughout the week and find at times I’m feeling like monitoring the collegium is a waste of time- that I could be studying instead. But, I’ve been finding that being able to interact with others and connect with them has been a breath of fresh air and a way for me to take a break from school. Same thing with working at the local McDonald’s here in Walnut Grove. It’s a stressful and challenging job but, I actually do like how I can completely forget about my worries with school assignments and just get lost in making lattes and bagging up burgers to hand out to customers. Saving up the paychecks doesn’t hurt either 😉

I work to stay motivated or at least try to keep moving forward with all of these school assignments with the thought of how much closer I am now to being able to work as a counsellor. I’ve been looking at volunteering opportunities with the local mental health clinic here and am really interested in the crisis/suicide prevention hot-line. I’m hoping I can fit that into my schedule next semester. I’ve been thinking that doing something like that would be very meaningful to me and a taste of helping others in need.

I also look forward to seeing my little brother’s university graduation this December! I’m really looking forward to that time with him and my parents. That’s another thing I remind myself of when I get bogged down in school-work blues.

My own upcoming graduation and working in mental health professions and my little brother’s upcoming uni graduation…yeah I’ll just keep those as my mantra for now.

4 Weeks in to the Fall 2017 Semester

The start to this semester has been a whirlwind of my student leadership duties, schoolwork, and search for a job off campus. It feels as if I haven’t taken the time to breathe and just be. In the beginning, I felt optimistic, even energized by most of my schoolwork. Several of my courses this year require me to write research papers or conduct group research. I was super excited about it all and couldn’t seem to stop researching even in my down time.

Now, as this week has gone by, I’ve become quite stressed by it all and find at times I no longer care about much. I’ve become so stressed by it all that I’ve begun questioning whether or not I really do want to finish this degree and even if I could be a clinical counsellor if I’m so stressed by this simple schoolwork, can I be capable of guiding others when I myself want to give up? I’ve been questioning myself and thinking of how I feel I should be handling things better.

But, just yesterday, I heard my counsellor, Rachael, and my friend, Matt, who’s in the graduate counselling psychology program at Trinity, both say that they experienced similar thoughts of wanting to give up and wondering if they should be or could be counsellors. I thought to myself that if two people who I admire and respect greatly and who have helped me very much in the areas of my personal thoughts and mental health, also have struggled and at times, said they still struggle with the same thing, then I’m not alone in these feelings of inadequacy and frustration. Maybe I just need to accept my frustration and keep moving forward. I don’t have to be perfect in order to effectively guide and help others in the future. Here, in the present, I don’t have to be perfect in order to do well in my research assignments and group projects. I’m free to make mistakes while in school. I used to believe that mistakes meant failure but, I’m slowly learning that mistakes are just another form of learning and a chance to improve, to grow. Growing and improving isn’t without some discomfort, some pain.

Pain has been, and continues to be, something I’m well versed in. Going through a depressive episode for a number of years off and on is like iron clamps wrapped around my shoulders, neck, and chest in a vise-like grip. Carrying this set of weights is numbing, energy sapping, and demotivating. The desire to give up is great even now. For about a week now I’ve felt guilty, like I hadn’t achieved anything in these last ten months if I still can suddenly feel numb, depressed, even on medication and careful, religious observance of mealtimes and sleep times. What more can I do? What point is there in doing anything? I can’t look forward to those elated happy highs I used to get anymore as those are also dangerous. I got ready this morning for my weekly leadership meeting and later manager meeting at work and I was engulfed in the numbness of it all after having only slept a few hours. I wanted nothing more than to give up. But I keep moving forward for my family. As I forced myself to interact and socialize with people, the heaviness seemed to bite into my very soul as I faked smiles and small talk here and there. After coming back from my meetings and napping, I attempted to distract myself with studying for my positive psychology course reading the textbook’s weekly chapter assignment. Of course, I’m awful at distracting myself from myself and my thoughts and I mulled over how I felt tossed back and forth between cold, numbness or hot, searing sorrow. I realized something that I’ve been told numerous times over the past ten months that just clicked and made sense for once today. I don’t actually want to lie down and give up. I want my pain to end. But, giving up won’t make my pain end. And, after agonizing over whether I’ve actually achieved anything in these past ten months, wondering if my attempts to move forward were in vain, I realized that to make the distinction between those two was indeed something to be proud of. It means I have the power to manage this disorder. It doesn’t control me. My despair won’t always be my constant companion. My choosing to continue to move forward isn’t in vain, it’s not fake, and it’s not without hope. The vise-grips seemed to loosen ever so slightly but didn’t completely go away. And it’s all right. Time ebbs and flows and so do my moods and my thoughts. There’ll be laughter and sunshine and vibrant colours again. Nothing is in vain when there’s hope and help and support. As I’ve said before, I’m blessed to have my family and friends in on my life now instead of walking around, afraid to let them in on the secret of my bipolar disorder. Talking with my Mom and my brother is the biggest lift to my days. I live with wonderful friends who care and poke and prod to make sure I remember to eat and take my meds. My friends and profs at school are encouraging and challenge my thinking daily. And, all my hope and thanks goes to my Saviour, Christ- through whom all things are possible. I remember that I won’t always feel numb or want to die because Christ made a way for me to one day live in perfect health without any sorrow or fear ever again.



Summer Time

Summer courses ended over four weeks ago. I enjoyed learning about data analysis and statistics and learning basic self defense through Krav Maga. As much as I hate to admit it, I shouldn’t have taken summer courses so soon after spring semester. I needed a break and took on too much. Lesson learned! I’m hoping to re-take data analysis and statistics in this coming fall semester… I should do even better…fingers crossed ;).

I had fun taking Krav Maga self defense with Michaela. Being active and aggressive in a positive way was highly enjoyable and something I always looked forward to at the end of the day. Our instructor, Karen, was respectful and firm, working us hard to help us exceed even our own expectations of ourselves. She has a real love for people, especially young women, wanting them to know how intrinsically valuable each person is because they’re made in God’s image.

Once summer courses were over, packing ensued and I took a flight that landed me right here in Chicago with my parents. It’s been good to visit and learn from each other how we communicate, how we understand and perceive things, and what we each hold important. Bottom line, it’s our love for each other that sees us through each and every day. We’ve enjoyed ourselves too going on long walks on beautiful, bright sunny days and going to the movies on sticky, hot, rainy days (Wonder Woman did NOT disappoint! It’s a must see!).

On a personal note, I learned the hard way not to taper off of my medication too quickly. The one positive thing from this experience is a long, epic poem I wrote during one of my sleepless nights. I’m back on them, though only half the original dosage and I only take them every other day. I feel better again and ready for each day, curious and excited how to fill each day. My housemates and friends (should I say friend-mates? or should I say house-friends?), throughout all of Spring semester, have always been there for me, supporting me and encouraging me. I’m immensely blessed by them and I miss them dearly. While I’ve been here, I’m blessed to have parents that care and support me through this, making sure I’m alright. I’m thankful for my parents. Not everyone with a mood disorder has parents who are supportive and caring and who try to understand as much as they can about the disorder itself and about what the individual is going through on a daily basis.

Though, I still have questions about what it means to be me on meds versus me off of meds and even what it means to be the ‘true me,’ I’ll keep taking each day as it comes, learning and looking for the positive in things. I’ve been applying to jobs here and there where they’re marked ‘temporary’ as I only have six weeks left of summer. In the meantime, I keep busy with reading and researching topics that interest me, such as aggression, meditation, etc. watching movies, and (trying to) do workout routines, and practicing my academic writing (foreshadowing for future blogposts…?). Just yesterday, my Mom and I had a little picnic after antiquing and oohing and aahing over yarn at the local yarn shop:

We’re lookin’ good 😉 in this 34 degree Celsius weather :O
Mom made homemade hummus to go with our carrot sticks, cukes, and naan bread…tasted good with our Mediterranean chicken!

My parents have bought a new house and we’ll be moving at the end of this month…so packing some more will soon be upon us!

Rosemary Kennedy, Pre-fontal Lobotomy, and Moving Forward in the Face of Mental Disorder’s Stigma

Mental health awareness and the stigma that follows it has been a topic of interest important to me lately. Historically, mental health was more hush-hush and kept a tight secret within families even more so than it is today because of the leading ideas of the day about eugenics and religious leader’s negative views on the mentally challenged (Larson). This was especially kept a tight secret by the Kennedy family (Larson). On 13 September 1918, Joe and Rose Kennedy gave birth to Rosemary Kennedy (Larson). The birth was delayed as the nurse with Mrs. Kennedy forced baby Rosemary back into the birth canal and held Mrs. Kennedy’s legs together, not allowing baby Rosemary to be born, as the nurse had been told to wait for the doctor (Larson). For roughly two hours, baby Rosemary was without oxygen (Larson). It is speculated that the doctor told the nurse to wait because he would not be paid if he did not deliver any baby (Larson). It is believed that the delay in Rosemary’s birth contributed to her later mental illness and learning disorder (Larson). It is speculated that she most likely had some form of dyslexia and most possibly manic depression or some other form of mental illness (Larson). Her childhood was wracked with volatile tantrums and mood swings and her learning was severely behind that of children her own age and those of her siblings (Larson). Her “fits” and “tantrums” were described later by her siblings as possibly epileptic (Larson). Her parents put immense pressure on her to perform well academically and physically, not wanting her to be treated any differently than her siblings even though it became increasingly apparent how different she was compared to them (Larson). Her parents, having come from a very wealthy and affluent family, were also very careful of their image and maintaining it. Having a mentally disabled person in the family could potentially cause the rest of the siblings to be ostracized and shunned by the rest of society, a “high-society” who seemed to buy into the ever-popular eugenics movement. This movement stressed that many minority groups, including African Americans and the mentally challenged, were the result of “bad genes” and should be forcefully sterilized, therefore not allowing anymore “bad genes” to exist and “pollute” the rest of the gene-pool (Larson).

Wanting to maintain this perfect image while caring for Rosemary as best they could, they sent their daughter to a few different private schools after learning at the local school with the rest of her siblings proved nearly impossible for Rosemary to keep up with her peers. She was already two grades behind at the time. It was hoped that at these private schools she would learn, and grow up and mature out of her academic and developmental “problems.” (Kathleen). As she grew up into a young woman, her learning difficulties did not disappear and her volatile mood swings seemed to get worse and increase. It was said that she had low self-esteem and could not sit still and concentrate for more than a couple of hours. Young Rosemary would write letters to her family. She deeply missed them and would look forward to when she could go home to vacation with the rest of her family. She very much wanted her parents to be proud of her. She would write her family and talk about how she was progressing and how well she doing, how much she was learning despite reports from her teachers negating this. Her parents, wanting to maintain their image of normalcy, presented her as a debutante along with her sisters to the queen while her father was an ambassador to Great Britain. They even went so far as to fabricate a story for the news, sharing how she was looking forward to being a grade school teacher in the near future. In reality, her father was looking into an experimental and controversial psychosurgical procedure that was being touted as a cure-all for those dealing with mild to severe psychopathological disorders and learning disabilities. In general, a lobotomy/leucotomy consists of severing the connection of the prefrontal cortex all the way to the thalamus by drilling holes into the sides of the patient’s skull or through the eye-sockets (El-Hai). The procedure was not well researched and highly experimental. Many in the medical community frowned on this operation and were against it. They stressed how it still needed to be researched. Once the media caught a hold of information about this “miracle” operation, it spread like wildfire and soon, many patients were being operated on with or without their consent (Diefenbach et al). Back then, the psychiatric hospitals were overcrowded and underfunded. One could speculate that this was one of the reasons for the popular use of the lobotomy procedure to control this overwhelming situation. While there were the few success stories of some patients who benefitted from this procedure, there were many horror stories of those who did not benefit at all from this procedure, some who were worse off than before.

An interesting and disturbing fact about this procedure is that it was overwhelmingly used on women during its peak. “In the United States alone, 60% of the procedures were performed on women, with 85% of women in California hospitals having a lobotomy performed on them and 89% having repeated and more radical forms of lobotomy (Ruether). Lobotomy corresponded to the cultural views of women in the 1940’s and 1950’s, with women’s mental functions seen as more dependent on their bodies than were men’s (Ruether). Any kind of hostile acting out or sexual promiscuity was viewed as more unacceptable in women than in men while being reduced to a passive state capable only of household labour more appropriate for female social roles (Ruether). It was not uncommon to combine lobotomy with clitoridectomy, in order to curb masturbation and strong sexual urges in women, (Ruether).” Without her mother’s knowledge and the disapproval of her siblings, Rosemary’s father consented to have her pre-frontal cortex lobotomized by the famous psychosurgeons of the time, Dr.’s Freeman and Watts. 

   Her surgery was unsuccessful in “curing” her of her mental health and learning disabilities and lead her to live the rest of her life in private institutionalized care, unable to care for herself properly or independently (Larson). This unsuccessful procedure was similar to that of the first procedure performed by Freeman and Watts on a woman who had a terrible major depression. After her procedure, she was said to have no spontaneity and could only do simple house chores but was generally agreeable in nature (El-Hai). Rosemary’s mother, heartbroken for her daughter, never visited her for over two decades. Her siblings, especially Eunice, were horrified to learn what happened and frequently visited her and were inspired by her (Larson). Eunice Kennedy Shriver was deeply affected by her sister, Rosemary, and was one of the few members of the Kennedy family who would actually visit her after she was institutionalized in her own private home, secluded away from the prying eyes of the world. Shriver was highly appalled by her father’s actions against Rosemary and was inspired to become the founder of the Special Olympics amongst other things. She was a champion for the intellectually disabled and mentally ill (Dolan). Her brother, Senator Ted Kennedy, was inspired to pass legislation in order to protect those who are mentally ill/learning disabled and provide for them opportunities to be able to advance and move forward, leading lives of quality (Finke). Her siblings were a part of the movement that has been ongoing over the past few decades into the present, working to eliminate the stigma that follows mental disorders/learning disabilities, affecting not only the people themselves who are diagnosed, but also affecting their families and their entire communities.

 While the times have changed, stigma still remains. Though there has been legislation and many campaigns that educate and improve the lives of those who have mental disorders/learning disabilities, there is a still a long way to go before stigma against those who have mental health issues and learning disabilities is eradicated. Psychiatric hospitals are no longer as horrific as they used to be but there is still the issue of misinformation and misunderstanding. In order to move forward, we must be more vocal about the truth and talk more openly about mental health. We must step forward out of the dark and into light if we are to continue to make any more progress.

Diefenbach. Gretchen, J, Donald Diefenbach, Alan Baumeister, and Mark West. “Portrayal of lobotomy in the popular press: 1935–1960.” Journal of the History of the Neurosciences 8 1(April 1999): 60-69

Dolan. Terrence, R. PhD. “In Memoriam: Eunice Kennedy Shriver.” Policy and Practice in Intellectual Disabilities 6 (December 2009): 241-242

El-Hai, Jack. The Lobotomist: A Maverick Medical Genius and His Tragic Quest to Rid the World of Mental Illness. Hoboken, NJ, US: John Wiley & Sons Inc, 2005.

Finke. Linda, M. PhD, RN. “Senator Ted Kennedy: A champion for mental health care and a friend to child psychiatric nursing.” Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychiatric Nursing 23 (May 2010): 49-50

Larson, Kate, Clifford. Rosemary: The Hidden Kennedy Daughter. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2015.

Ruether, Rosemary, Radford and David Ruether. Many Forms of Madness: A Family’s Struggle with Mental Illness and the Mental Health System. n.p.: Fortress Press, 2010.