Just Like Someone Without Mental Illness Only More So
Here is Mark’s childhood spent as the son of a struggling writer in a house tha ...more
Be the first to ask a question about Just Like Someone Without Mental Illness Only More So
After the book was published, Mark recovered well enough to get into Harvard Medical School and is a practicing pediatrician till today. That may sound like a happy ending, but no life wraps ...more
I'm not sure if it's just Mark Vonnegut's style, or if this indicative of someone living with mental illness, but the writing had this staccato quality. Ideas jumped from one paragraph to the next. There would be sentences in the middle of paragraphs that didn't seem to connect to much around it.
It's kind of like the old-timey comedians whose routines were:
Set-up, Punchline, Laughter...Set-up, Punchline, Laughter... lather, rinse, repeat. Except this book isn't exactly fun ...more
In the introduction to that book, Vonnegut, the son of author Kurt Vonnegut, described himself as "a hippie, a son of a counterculture hero, a B.A. ...more
Mark Vonnegut first wrote about his battle with mental illness in a 1975 book, The Eden Express. This followup came ...more
The book covers topics like mental illness and addiction, but not as extensively as it might seem from the title. The bulk of the focus is on what’s wrong with t ...more
Vonnegut's book is written in that slightly out-of-focus way--as the title says--"like someone without mental illness only more so". His wry observations illuminate how anyone, diagnosed-and-labeled or not, struggles to make sense of and be sensible about being alive.
The necessity of the arts to survival ("the arts are not extra") and how they add fullness and magic and mystery to li ...more
"Part of getting better from being crazy included the realization that my life might be a lot longer than I had thought and that I probably wasn't going to get out of anything by having the world end of Western civilization collapse.
It was too bad I was twenty-five, hadn't taken the right cour ...more
Mark Vonnegut on Just Like Someone Without Mental Illness Only More So
I wrote Just Like Someone Without Mental Illness Only More So because I was increasingly annoyed with my younger self, who had wrapped up everything with a bow. You can try but you don’t just get to get over mental illness at age twenty-five, go to medical school, write a book, get married and call it a wrap.
In the seventies I was in so in love with the medical model I almost thought I had invented it. "No...more
"I’m fully prepared to be wrong here, but I suspect that high on the lists of why people gravitate towards reading memoir is because they anticipate a certain unflinchingness in articulation. They expect, oft-erroneously, that if a person’s got the testicular/cervical fortitude to put themselves out in the limelight, then, by gad, they’re going to write with moxy, with aplomb, with some brass! I’m pleased to report that Mark Vonnegut’s got all three. Even though I’ ...more
The strength of the book is in t ...more
Written in entertaining short segments (just like dad), this is the other bookend to Eden Express, where we get to find out what happened to the hippie, schizophrenic pediatrician with the famous father. The book isn't a masterpiece like his first book -- it's reflective, rather than raw -- the book of a 60 year old, who has lived through another 30 productive years of mental maintenance, illness, alcoholism and health.
The two books should be slip-cased together and given to anyone wants to ...more
I suppose my final judgement is this:
(1) Mark Vonnegut is ...more
I think if I didn't have Kurt to compare it to I might have given it more stars, which isn't really fair. I did really enjoy it and now that I am old I rarely finish a book that doesn't keep my interest so that says something.
It is possib ...more
This is what it's like to read this book. Completely disjointed, never giving a clear description about anything. In fact, the clearest he got was writing about being a pediatrician before managed health care- but the book isn't call "Just like someone witho ...more
At the same time I sort of appreciated reading a general story line, I sort of liked the jumping around. I sort of liked having a general sense of his life and not being weighed down with the details.
Having recently read "Eat, Pray, Love" this book was a nice change of pace. Mark Vonnegut has a self deprecating somewhat detached style which I enjoy. His insights on mental illness and religion seem more realistic than those in "Eat, Pray, Love." But, then again, maybe they just match my own prejudices better....
I highlighted several lines including:
"Medical care has become a lot of crust and precious little pie."
"Without art you are stuck with yourself as you are and life as you think life is."
"Introverts almost never cause me trouble and are usually much better at what they do than extroverts. Extroverts are too busy slapping one another on the back, team building, and making fun of introverts to ge ...more
An excellent book that will give hope to those with mental illness that life can be more than just trying to stay well. Also worthwhile in the field of substance abuse as he proves to himself that he is an alcoholic without trying.
Maybe it will help those who don't claim mental illness as part of their dossier, realize that the mentally ill can contribute as well. And those who do have mental illness ...more