I have not written directly about the most serious of psychiatric diseases. Schizophrenia is…
An authentic journey into darkness and light, Bipolar MD: My Life As a Physician with Bipolar Disease by Paul Golden, MD delves into what it’s like to live with bipolar disorder every day but still carry on a full and satisfying life.
Speaking from personal experience and professional practice, Golden reveals all the struggles and triumphs of living with mental illness as a medical professional. With remarkable honesty, he reveals the details of his manic episodes, obsessive compulsive disorder, depression, losing his first wife, shooting himself multiple times and having his medical license taken away upon retirement, but also the many lives he touched and the patients he saved.
“Love, family, education, a career and a purpose are all within reach,” says Dr. Golden. “Those who suffer from bipolar disorder can find both personal AND professional success!” Bipolar MD: My Life As a Physician with Bipolar Disorder is the story of a bipolar man who didn’t let his illness hold him back.
It occurred to me that news of the release of my memoir, Bipolar MD: My Life As a Physician with Bipolar Disorder, has been whipping around my three Facebook accounts, generating folks reaching out to me on my web mail, leading to a lecture by Patch Adams, scheduling a lecture to Sutter Memorial Hospital Modesto for CME for nursing staff, generating a book signing at the BookSmith book store in the Haight in S.F. and one in Saratoga, CA. that I have not actually blown my own horn and talked about the book here on the website. However all of the above have led back to www.mdgolden.com.
Well, four years in the making with Gail Woodard at Dudley Court Press, Barbara McNichol, and Phil Baker (marketing) the memoir was released on October 1st and is available in paperback on Amazon.
At 253 pages with glamorous pages of me this is a piece of work in which I have put my heart and soul. It is me. It is all out there. It is my heritage, my education, my family, my medical training i.e. medical school, internship residency, fellowship and then thirty-four years practicing nephrology in Modesto, CA, my six discrete episodes of major depression starting in medical school in 1973 and my last one in 2015 and multiple episodes of hypomania and one full on episode of mania. I tell of my most proud trip to Israel on an externship of medical school which coincidentally occurred during the Yom Kippur war. I recount a solo trip I took to Alaska for my fortieth birthday by jet, seaplane, ferry, single engine plane and auto in quest of Bald Eagles. I recount a husband’s worst nightmare the death of my wife when we were both forty-four.
To add some human interest I recall many interesting cases from medical school all the way to my practice in Modesto. Some have a macabre humor which I had to have to cut through the stress.
Not all cases were triumphs. There were sad cases with sad outcomes as well. I lost some dear friends from breast cancer in particular that made me question the concept of other earthly entities ultimately ending in a trip from Judaism to Methodism and finally to Buddhism and atheism which is not inconsistent with Buddhism.
I also talk about medical ethics or lack thereof having served on the Ethics Committees at two hospitals. I particularly struggled with the overutilization of high tech diagnostic and treatment modalities on people with zero quality of life or procedures that lead to it. Regarding this I conclude that as far as the health care delivery debate the only answer is single party payer or Medicare for everyone. But, this will not work without more oversight.
The underlying theme, of course, in all of the above is HOW DID I SUCCEED WITH ALL OF THIS WITH THE ALBATROSS OF BIPOLAR DISORDER. After retiring three years ago at age 65 I have made my mission in my second career to be an advocate for mental illness through education to end the stigma. To that end there is a “why” to this memoir. That “why” is in the first book, an educational book that was released in September of 2015: An Insider’s View of Bipolar Disease.
I again thank the folks above for the incredible journey that has led to these books, speaking engagements and more knowledge of the workings of computers than I ever imagined I would have now at age sixty-eight.