This narrative is from a 70 year-old woman who has lived with depression for decades. She has a diagnosis of Bipolar II, and has written several books about her experiences. Her husband wrote a book for the spouses of people who are depressed, and they both speak and teach about their experiences to groups.
This narrative features poetry written by Elán Yardena, taken from a book of poetry she published called A Life Emerging: A Poetic Journey Out of Depression. Because of her position and the nature of the work she does, Elán had to be very, very careful about telling me her story, as knowledge of her battle could harm her professionally. The name she used in the study was the same nom de plume she used to publish her book. I do not know her true identity.
Frida is a 57 year-old woman who is a survivor of severe childhood abuse. She has lived with depression her entire life, and has been committed to the process of healing from her trauma and moving, however slowly, toward wholeness and authentic expression of her feelings. She has a strong interest in Art Brut, and used the creation of the images in this narrative in service of exploring past pain through a creative lens.
At the time of this interview, Yemaya was 32 years old. She is a graduate student in psychology. Her multimedia narrative emphasizes the metaphors she uses to describe her experience of profound lows, and the relief she finds in sacred union, surrender, and trust.
I took transcripts of each interview, photos or video I could collect from my co-researchers, their original poetry, art and other creative data to weave short multimedia narratives that reflected some part of their story.
The date listed is the date the interview originally took place