In his book Some of Millions Jethro Bor brings together the stories of a number of people from all walks of life who have undergone mental health breakdowns and other mental health issues.
He has carefully collated and edited their stories in a sensitive and constructive fashion. The book also has a forward by Patrick Cockburn.
Jethro is no stranger to the problems brought about by problems with mental health, having suffered with the impact of mental illness for many years himself, he wanted to shine a powerful but friendly light upon the impact of mental health issues on sufferers and their families. It's a sobering fact that at least one in four of us will have to cope with a mental health problem in their lives.
We read of the problems faced by journalist Patrick Cockburn when his art student son became mentally ill when Patrick was reporting on the war in Afghanistan.
There is the story of Charlotte, who was shocked to be diagnosed as having bipolar disease, because as she points out, she had always considered herself a level-headed person.
We read of the first panic attack suffered by Rebecca in her twenties. The rages she had felt after her parents had divorced when she was seven were to have serious consequences in her adult life.
There's Edward, who had been diagnosed as having paranoid schizophrenia in 1990. He began talking back to the voices he was hearing, a bad thing to do, he would be told, later.
There's Pic, who became depressed at age eight or thereabouts, who began cutting herself as she became older, something she kept secret until she became married.
There's also cases where the mental illness of others can impact upon family members or close friends. For example Andrew's father committed suicide when Jim was 17, although nobody was quite certain why he had done it. Andrew was stoical about it for the sake of his mother, but later on he became depressed and attempted to take his own life.
The book contains highly relevant and helpful advice from Jim, who offers sage and helpful advice.
There are some beautiful illustrations throughout the book by people who have been through the mill of life. as it were.
This book is important as it enables the reader to have a glimpse into the lives of people who suffer from a wide range of mental health issues.
It will make a perfect gift for someone who has mental health issues or for every nurse and doctor in the land, so it deserves to be in Christmas stockings up and down the land. I think mental health professionals might like to order multiple copies for their practices.
It's published by The Book Guild at £9.99.