Dr. Kay Redfield Jamison, an internationally recognized authority on depressive illnesses and their treatment, knows the subject of suicide firsthand. At the age of twenty-eight, after years of struggling with manic-depression, she attempted to kill herself. Her survival marked the beginning of a life's work to investigate both mental illness and self-inflicted death.
Weaving together a psychological and scientific exploration of the subject with personal essays about individual suicides, Dr. Jamison in this book brings not only her compassion and literary skill but all of her knowledge, research, and clinical experience to bear on this devastating problem. In tracing the network of reasons underlying suicide, she gives us astonishing examples of the methods and places that people have chosen to kill themselves and a startling look at their journals, drawings, and farewell notes. She also brings us vivid insight into the most recent findings from hospitals and laboratories around the world; the critical biological and psychological factors that interact to cause suicide; the new strategies being evolved to combat them; and the powerful but still insufficiently used treatments available from modern medicine.
"Night Falls Fast" dispels the silence and shame that too often surround suicide. It helps us to understand the suicidal mind, to better recognize the person at risk, and to comprehend the profound and disturbing sense of loss created in those left behind.