Henry's Demons: A Father and Son's Journey Out of Madness
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On a cold February day two months after his 20th birthday, Henry waded into the lethally cold Newhaven estuary and almost drowned. The trees, he said, had told him to do it. In Afghanistan, Patrick learned that Henry had been admitted to a hospital mental ward. Ten days later he was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia. With remarkable candour, Patrick writes of the seven years Henry has since spent almost entirely in mental hospitals. Schizophrenics are at high risk for suicide, and his parents live in constant fear for Henry's life. The book also includes Henry's own account of his experiences. In these raw and eerily beautiful chapters he tells of his visions and voices, the sense that he has discovered something magical and profound. Together, Patrick and Henry's stories create one of the most nuanced and revealing portraits of mental illness ever written, and a stirring memoir of family, parenthood, and courage.