Edit: Hello Radio 4 listeners!
Anyhow, I was just unsubtly reminding you that the play is on this afternoon, at 2.15pm on Radio 4. You can listen online, or catch up on BBC iPlayer. I do think iPlayer can be accessed outside the UK.
(Listen again: here is a handy link)
It was Radio Choice in the Guardian today, and the Times, so that’s nice! Although the Times review was strangely morbid…
Afternoon Play Radio 4, 2.15pm Seaneen Molloy describes herself on her sumptuously appointed MySpace page as “a tiny Irish writer” (she’s 4ft 9in). Since 2007 she has also written a blog called The Secret Life of a Manic Depressive, parts of which have been adapted for Louise Ramsden’s play Do’s and Don’ts for the Mentally Interesting. “You’ll laugh, you’ll cry,” Molloy (played by Séainín Brennan) writes in her first entry. “If you’re bipolar, you’ll probably do both at the same time.” And, yes, you laugh ? because when Molloy is up she can be very funny ? and you’re spared the really dark bits because when she is deeply depressed she can’t bring herself to write at all, she’s too busy trying to stop herself killing herself.
Just for the sake of journalistic integrity: I’m 4ft 11″, I gained two inches, which are very important as it means I’m nearly 5ft”, which is almost the size of a real person.
I’ll be listening with you (and my family), and will update this entry afterwards to say hello to people who’ve drifted across! I hope people like it and find it helpful/hopeful/funny/deplorable/erotic etc…
You can read this if you like– it’s about the play and contains some background information that explains some things and puts others into context. The Posts I Want You To Read page is also a good place to waste an hour…
Edit- slightly embarrassing emotional blathering and thanks…
Bloody hell, this is surreal! It’s a parallel universe version of me and Rob! I’m listening to it via my Sky box and Lou and I have our names on the screen. Some of it is quite painful, so, yeah, it has been a bit difficult at points. Parts about our dad made me tearful, but I’m glad he’s in there, that people know he existed. I’d been texting my big sister Paula the whole way through who was reassuring me, as well as laughing at me and Rob.
My mum rang me in tears saying she was proud of me and now I’m all weepy. I think I’ve made my mum cry about three times in my life. She’s been in Belfast all this time and hasn’t even known some of what went on. So that’s what has made me a bit, well, weepy. I was partly dreading it because I couldn’t quite bring myself to listen to it in its entirety before, because it’s close enough to reality to be upsetting, so it was somewhat emotional hearing it properly.
Many many thanks to Louise Ramsden. She is a brilliant writer, so thanks to her for being so completely respectful, supportive and genuinely being totally ace. It is her play. Also a billion thanks to Fiona Kelcher, the producer, who wanted to do the play in the first place and whose sensitive handling of the issue was the reason that I agreed to it. She has also been fantastic and lovely and so have the cast, especially Seainin- right, will stop the speech now. But we got a shite AND a bollocks on Radio 4 after the Archers! Hurrah!
Obviously some people won’t like it which is okay, but I hope some find this helpful and that they identify with it, and that they find it in some way hopeful. And that it does help get the idea out there that people with mental illness are just people, and that the experience of living with it is a human one. And thank you for listening. (And thank you to the people who read and comment, too).
Anyway, blathering over!
One more thing- my psychiatrist knows that this play has been broadcast. I anticipate a little something extra in my next prescription.
Filed under: Bipolar Disorder