Wilson’s Memoir on His Battle With Bipolar Both Inspirational and Revealing
As a guest on the PI Window on Business Professor Eric Wilson has tackled the difficult subject of depression and the problems caused by the pharmaceutical industry’s propensity to illegally promote off-label use of anti-psychotic drugs – often times with devastating consequences. (Note: In my December 13th, 2009 post titled “Antipsychotic Prescriptions . . . for Children: Is the Medicaid Story Today’s Version of Go Ask Alice?” I make reference to the fact that “anti psychotic prescriptions “are the single biggest drug expenditure for Medicaid, costing the program $7.9 billion in 2006, the most recent year for which the data is available.”)
What has always impressed me about Eric’s views during our discussions regarding his first book “Against Happiness: In Praise of Melancholy” is the fact that he has always pointed to individuals such as a Winston Churchill or Dan Rather, who despite suffering from depression were and are high functioning individuals who have made a tremendous contribution to the world in which they live.
This is a far cry from the couple cited in a recent post who are poaching the government coffers in which the man is on disability for depression but somehow has the will to putter around the house fixing electronic devices, while the wife – who can’t seem to keep a job – miraculously finds the time to be actively involved as a member in a local organization including running as its President.
In short, and in line with Eric’s observation that what was considered normal sadness in the 50s is now being diagnosed as clinical depression in the 21st Century, the poor me – I am having a bad day whiners are a disgrace to those who truly suffer from depression and yet still find a way to make a positive contribution to society versus sponging off of it.
This of course is what makes Eric’s new book “The Mercy of Eternity: A Memoir of Depression and Grace” so powerful in that it shines a needed light on a subject that desperately requires it so as to finally help to inspire those who genuinely suffer from the illness, while exposing those who use it as an excuse or a crutch for self-serving, life is too hard behavior.
Along the lines of Jim Bouchard’s comment that courage is not the absence of fear, but an ability to face and overcome it, Eric’s story is one of facing depression and instead of being crippled by it or escaping it, he recounts how he finds the wisdom and grace to both persevere and overcome.
I am pleased to announce that Eric will be joining five time New York Times/Washington Post bestselling author Larry Winget and Dr. Jackie Black – who’s new book “Couples & Money: Crack the code to end the #1 conflict in marriage” is being featured throughout the month of December on the PI Window on Business – in January 2011 on Jim Bouchard’s and my new show on Blog Talk Radio The 49th Parallel Forum to talk about Depression: Real Illness or a Convenient Excuse?
The second half of the inaugural broadcast will also be interesting as we welcome Andy Sullivan who is the founder of the Hard Hat Pledge, a group of construction workers opposed to the Ground Zero Mosque in New York.
Be sure to tune in as it promises to be a controversial and perhaps even unforgettable premier.