My Alien Self
My Journey Back to Me
One of many 5* reviews… “What an interesting, fun and well written life story this is – I was engaged right from the start and couldn’t put it down. Amanda’s certainly packed a lot of exciting adventures into her life! I would thoroughly recommend this book not just to those suffering with mental health issues, but to those who would also like a jolly good read!” If I told you I’d been to twenty-four Countries (twenty-one by the time I was twenty-two), that I’d worked in Japan for nine months, toured Australia for six months, enjoyed seven months in Thailand and met and campaigned for the Orangutan in Borneo, you might think that I was pretty lucky. If I told you I’d worked in the hotel industry, for a sexual health department in a hospital and with prisoners in a drug cell block of a male prison, that I’d worked as a recruitment consultant, in so many office jobs I’ve lost count, as well as having my own company and multiple websites, at age thirty-six, then you might think I’ve had an interesting life. But if I added to that a mix of child rape, mental health problems, promiscuity, drug taking, alcohol abuse, eating disorders, self-harm, violence, mood swings, obsession, jealousy, loss of self worth, being raised by a mentally ill mother, bankruptcy, thyroid and gastro problems and public masturbation in school at age nine, then I am not sure what you’d think. But this is me; Amanda Green. This is my life, my story; my journey back to me from depression, anxiety, panic attacks, OCD and Borderline Personality Disorder – mental illness which manifested during my life and came out ‘to it’s peak’ in my thirties. I was able to use my collection of mementos, photos, diaries, journals, letters, emails and text messages of my past to finally see who I had become, and more importantly with a combination of therapy, medication and my writing, how I became that alien self and how I found the real me. The editor (Debz Hobbs-Wyatt) adds… This is the journey of a normal working class girl, trapped in a roller coaster world of disorder and excitement, love and joy, depression and anger – and her fight against stigma While My Alien Self would be inspiring for any sufferer, their families or medical teams in its honest insights into living with a mental illness, it also has universal appeal. For who, at times, has not felt their life spin into chaos and wondered what is normal? This story effectively and openly highlights just how fine the line is between what is normal, and what is ‘mental illness’ And everyone who reads it will be able to relate to it. Contains explicit language and sexual scenes Emergence had this to say ‘‘We very much enjoyed reading this honest and powerful account of Amanda’s journey from diagnosis to recovery. We applaud such authentic and candid accounts of the devastation that can be experienced by those living with personality disorder and of the message of hope and recovery that the book conveys.’ Bon Dobbs (Anything To Stop The Pain and Author of ‘When hope is not enough’) said ‘While there are many borderline personality disorder memoirs out now (including ‘The Buddha and the Borderline’, ‘Loud House of Myself’, ‘Get Me Out of Here’, ‘Girl in Need of a Tourniquet’ and ‘Poisoned Love’), My Alien Self goes a long way to providing hope to the sufferers of BPD. By publishing the steps taken to reframe certain ways thinking, through CBT worksheets and other exercises, the author has revealed that recovery from BPD is possible.’ I self published this book and am very proud of that fact, because I was able to write it exactly as I wanted it to be written, with the help from my fabulous editor, Debz Hobbs-Wyatt. Whilst the massive help a publisher and agent gives, they do narrow down what is published, so I took on the journey to publish it and market it myself. There’s a sequel out too, called ’39’. It’s quite different, but it leads on from this one 🙂
A Word from the Author
This is my first published book and it took a long four years to write! But it had to be written, as a cathartic exercise for me, but mainly because I wanted to help others to understand what it’s like to have a mental illness and how I recovered. It has been read by mental health professionals, fellow sufferers, carers of sufferers and many readers who like to read a memoir with a difference.
It spans my life story from 1973 when I was born, until 2012. I have written journals and taken photos since I was fourteen, so I had my life in journals, but there was a lot of trawling to do, to find the ones that would tell my story in the words of me at whatever time it was. So, when I was a child, you will hear my child thoughts etc. I also went through letters from the time before the internet, emails, text messages, photos, and more, to aid me in getting my story into perspective, and to fill in the gaps of my memory. I found things I wish I hadn’t along the way – traumas I had clearly pushed deep into the recesses of my memory, so they were gone from my thoughts.
I was diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder, depression, OCD and anxiety. This story is about my family life, and how mental health issues came into my life, through my mum and from experiences. This is a dark at times, roller coaster ride of abuse, paranoia, fun, travels, relationships, rape, drugs, alcohol and much more. An adults only true story.
(Amanda Green, November 2017)