Namugongo, Kampala, Central Region, Uganda
Taking a pill to treat depression and psychosis is widely believed to be one of the main solutions to most mental disorders. But could this be a wrong approach? Could there be a simpler truth?
My name is Sarah Tushemereirwe. It’s a long Kinyakole name meaning “We are happy.” Happiness is an emotion I struggled to attain most of my life. I am 30 years old and I was diagnosed with a mental disorder at the age of 12.
Since then, I have struggled with depression, bipolar disorder, bulimia, low self-esteem, and suicidal tendencies that led me to overdose and jump out of moving cars. I have also engaged in severe self-harm that did not just leave me scarred on the outside, but on the inside too.
I never thought things could get worse. But one September night four years ago, I went into a coma due to kidney failure as a result of the psychiatric medications, neglect and stigma. I also sustained multiple organ failure.
It has been a long journey of recovery. A journey of learning everything from scratch, including how to speak, how to write, and how to walk.
With all this and more, I have not lived my dream of becoming a doctor despite getting straight A’s in Biology, Chemistry, Mathematics and Physics.
But I have survived. I have survived sexual molestation, physical abuse, stigma, electroconvulsive therapy, drug after drug, hospitalization after hospitalization and much more. I am still surviving.
I believe I have a unique experience with life and mental illness that has led to great truths of who God is and our responsibility in having a healthy mind.
Over the past several years, more and more people, laymen and professionals alike, have started questioning the mode of treatment of using drugs to “reverse chemical imbalances” in mental disorders. According to psychiatrist Joanna Moncrieff, every day different media sources challenge the science and ethics behind drug treatment therapy and, especially, forced incarceration and medication.
I have an obligation to share my story, for who knows, it may save a life or two or more. So I have decided to write an inspirational and motivational book with my real life experiences and research backing up the idea that the current drug-based approach to mental healthcare may not be the best answer.
Through writing a book, I can have a greater impact on people in countries I would not be able to travel to, in schools I cannot attend, in hospitals, environments, and homes I may not physically reach.
But writing, editing, publishing and distributing a book well is beyond my means, so I am reaching out to you for financial support. With other funding campaigns in mind, I request for $5,000 (UGX 18, 075,000)
My ultimate goal is $23,400. This will cover fees for a ghostwriter, development editor, transcription services, proofreader, book cover and interior designers, conversion to digital formats, an author webpage, and printing and shipping of paperback copies. The entire process will be managed by a writing and publishing professional.
I am honestly thankful for my journey. I believe I am to be a vessel God uses to bring inspiration and hope to the hopeless, as He turns out what the enemy intends to use to destroy us for our good and His glory.
I thank everyone who donates, for every contribution counts. Anyone who donates more than $50(180,750) will be sent a copy of the book when it is published.Groups of individuals can jointly contribute.
May God bless each one of you by allowing you to encounter His love and live a life of purpose.
Please share this Akabbo campaign with all your friends and networks. Thank you!