The Psychiatrist Who Cured the Scientologist by Aaron David Gottfried

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Stars: ****

Pandora Press (2008)

Summary: Step inside the misunderstood world of mental illness and the underground secrets of Scientology in this first-hand account of a walk on the extreme side of both. [In the book], get a look at a life lived not on one side, but in the middle of the battlefield. This true story of a teenager trying to seek truth, finds himself going completely backwards in a downward spiral of curiosity, rebellion and fanaticism. The end of the beginning starts with a total loss of reality in order to realize what is true. – from back of book

While I knew the book covered mental illness and loss of reality, I was not prepared for the amount of talk about suicide. As a past suicide-attempter, it was a bit upsetting to read. That’s why I’m mentioning it first, to warn anyone who may be upset by it.

However it was a very good book that I read straight through in under 2 hours. The mental illness talked about is Bipolar. I’m not sure why the book never mentions that’s what it is but I don’t think saying that is spoiling it. Anyone familiar with Bipolar would recognize what is is right away.

As for the Scientology aspect, I knew nothing really about Scientology before reading this book and I feel much more knowledgeable about it now. For some reason I was thinking Scientology was not believing in God but in science but boy was I wrong. They believe in God and in fact seem to ignore some basic science, such as some mental illness needing medication. It was against the authors Scientology background to take any kind of anti-psychotic or even anti-depressant. It was all very enlightening.

As a sufferer of Bipolar, although a different kind than the author, I found it shocking the way Aaron was treated. I try to be open-minded about different religions but if they had been open to medication and proper visits to a psychiatrist he would have been diagnosed sooner.

Recommended for lovers of memoirs and books about mental illness, other religions or leaving Scientology.

Links of Interest: Aaron Gottfried,

Other Reviews: NONE YET

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About Kathleen

I've been a nonfiction lover for as long as I can remember. I love children's nonfiction as well and love to share my knowledge and the books I gained them from, with the world. I wish more people would give nonfiction a chance.