Raising the Alarm is an autobiography by Arron Whittaker. He lives with schizoaffective disorder and borderline personality. He also has a trauma history, and is sure that he’s on the autism spectrum, although he hasn’t been diagnosed.
The author uses a pen name for this book, and explains the steps that he’s taken to conceal the identity of the people who are included.
He begins with his difficult childhood, and how this likely contributed to his mental illness. He describes himself as “socially inept” as a youngster, and gaming played an important role for him.
The book moves on to the author’s university years, at which point he started abusing drugs. It was around that time that his illness began to make an appearance. The book covers the treatment he initially received, his subsequent return to drug use, and the steady worsening of his illness, The author describes several attempts to end his life, delusions, various delusions, and the reckless spending of mania.
Despite all of the difficult times, the author explains that “after years of hardship, I am finally in a place where I have purpose, although it seems my purpose has become writing which is not where I thought life would take me.” With this book complete, he plans to shift his writing to fiction.
Over the last few months, I’ve read several books by authors with schizoaffective disorder. I think it’s so important that stories like this get told, because there’s not enough of them. This book offers readers a valuable glimpse of what life with this illness is like.
Raising the Alarm is available on Amazon (affiliate link).
I received a free copy in exchange for an honest review.
You can find my other reviews on the MH@H book review index or on Goodreads.
5 thoughts on “Book Review: Raising the Alarm”
A coworker of mine has schizophrenic disorder, among other diagnoses. I’m sure a lot of people who don’t know him think he is very different, but as his friend he is actually a really great guy. He is also one of our fastest workers on the team. I have had many conversations with him about himself and my diagnoses. Between that and our similar taste in music, we grew a bond at work. It was nice, because normally I don’t let anyone in about my personal stuff like diagnoses etc besides my husband or say on my blog because there is something about having an alias online makes you feel safer I guess to share your deepest thoughts etc. If that makes any sense. xD Besides I write better than I can handle social situations. 😛
Ia also do better online than in person.
I’ll have to check it out!
Thanks for the review Ashley – it certainly looks like something I’d read.
Thanks for amplifying his voices and so many other voices