My Lovely Wife In The Psych Ward: A Memoir by Mark LukachMy Lovely Wife In The Psych Ward: A Memoir by Mark Lukach

My Lovely Wife In The Psych Ward: A Memoir

byMark Lukach

Paperback | May 2, 2017

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A heart-wrenching, yet hopeful, memoir of a young marriage that is redefined by mental illness and affirms the power of love.

Mark and Giulia’s life together began as a storybook romance. They fell in love at eighteen, married at twenty-four, and were living their dream life in San Francisco. When Giulia was twenty-seven, she suffered a terrifying and unexpected psychotic break that landed her in the psych ward for nearly a month. One day she was vibrant and well-adjusted; the next she was delusional and suicidal, convinced that her loved ones were not safe.

Eventually, Giulia fully recovered, and the couple had a son. But, soon after Jonas was born, Giulia had another breakdown, and then a third a few years after that. Pushed to the edge of the abyss, everything the couple had once taken for granted was upended.

A story of the fragility of the mind, and the tenacity of the human spirit, My Lovely Wife in the Psych Ward is, above all, a love story that raises profound questions: How do we care for the people we love? What and who do we live for? Breathtaking in its candor, radiant with compassion, and written with dazzling lyricism, Lukach’s is an intensely personal odyssey through the harrowing years of his wife’s mental illness, anchored by an abiding devotion to family that will affirm readers’ faith in the power of love.

Mark Lukach is a teacher and freelance writer. His work has been published in the New York Times, Atlantic Monthly, Pacific Standard, and WIRED, among others. He is currently the Ninth Grade Dean at The Athenian School, where he also teaches history. He lives with his wife, Giulia, and their son, Jonas, in the San Francisco Bay area.
Title:My Lovely Wife In The Psych Ward: A MemoirFormat:PaperbackDimensions:320 pages, 8.25 × 5.5 × 0.8 inPublished:May 2, 2017Publisher:HarperCollinsLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0062698397

ISBN - 13:9780062698391


Rated 5 out of 5 by from A great read! In “My Lovely Wife in the Psych Ward” Mark Lukach tells the story of his wife’s mental illness and how it impacts his family. Lukach is very candid about the ups and downs that he faces, and how mental illness impacts the entire family. This memoir deals with the sad topic of mental illness, but really is a story about love and family.
Date published: 2019-01-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great read from a clearly very passionate husband Working int he medical field its a great book to remember what the outside world deals with when handling a serious illness. Was a great read and one of those books to keep in the collection! ( after sharing of course)
Date published: 2018-11-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Favourite read of the summer What an HONEST reflection from the perspective of a spouse who ends up being a caregiver during difficult times. I cried, I smiled, I felt so many different emotions reading this book. Love conquers all.
Date published: 2018-09-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Read ASAP!! It has been awhile since I haven't been able to put down a book. This tore my heart out and yet made me fall in love with the dedication he had to his wife and the reflection on the process and what it really takes from a person to not only continue loving someone with so many unknowns, but to have to remember to also take care of yourself. I would read a sequel/update in a half a heartbeat
Date published: 2018-09-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from best book This book is amazingly written and tells a heart wrenching true story about a young woman's journey in the psych ward struggling with sever mental illness. It really helps to show the affects that mental illness has on family members. Definitely a great book to read! #plumreview
Date published: 2018-08-31
Rated 5 out of 5 by from incredible read This book was heartfelt and captivating, so much so that I had a hard time putting it down. I recommend everyone read this book.
Date published: 2018-08-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from What a gem. So glad I picked this up! Not sure what to expect when I first saw this book. Knowing it was about mental illness, wasn't thinking it would be as enjoyable read as it was. It still had its heartbreaking moments, but the hope and moments of joys Mark Lukach managed to capture make this a heart warming memoir.
Date published: 2018-08-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from amazing Such a good read. Especially since it is a memoir.
Date published: 2018-08-07
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Good Memoir about a Difficult Health Journey There are not enough books written about mental illness and its devastating impact on families, but this is one of the first. Good story but the mundane domestic details can get to be too much and repetitive at times. Not the best book I have read but still worth the time to know about this family's experience and their bravery.
Date published: 2018-06-19
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Thoughtful loved this book, worth the read, very thoughtful and sad at times. my first time reading a memoir-type book!
Date published: 2018-06-13
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Too much whining... I have a family member with severe mental illness so I know how hard it can be. Having said that, this book was not about the ill person, Giulia. It was about Mark who acted like a victim and whined through the entire thing. Many of us deal with these issues and we don't have the luxury of quitting jobs, travelling the world or a strong extended family. Not sure how that was possible but I'm glad they had those luxuries during a difficult time. I'm empathetic for anyone going through it but my goodness, man up. Nobody chooses mental illness. Nobody chooses the bulk of the stuff life hands us.
Date published: 2018-06-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Good read I really liked this book, it was incredibly heart breaking but brutally honest. I really feel that this book can relate to any one who has dealt with any sort of chronic illness, mental or not in a loved one. I can't imagine how hard it would have been to write, but would certainly recommend reading it.
Date published: 2018-05-14
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Thought Provoking Look at Mental Health! While this doesn't have a happy ending, it's an important and realistic view on how mental health affects families
Date published: 2018-05-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Realistic This book is based on a true story so it is not sugar coated in the happy ending, miraculous cure as fiction. It realistically and beautifully paints the picture of a family's experience with mental illness. #plumreview
Date published: 2018-04-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Heart Breaking This book broke my heart and put it back together many times. A beautiful memoir about a beautiful love between a husband and his wife.
Date published: 2018-04-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I loved this Very great, honest count of their life together that may hit home to some people. Shows you how love is the most important thing of all
Date published: 2018-03-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it I found it hard to put this book down. It was a very honest book about the ups and downs of mental illness that tugged at my heart strings.
Date published: 2018-02-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing, heartwrenching and warming This book was near impossible to put down. The memoir of it all really adds to the feel of it all and it just makes it so amazing. It pulls you in, rips out your heart and makes you love everything and everyone around!
Date published: 2018-02-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Quick, heart-wrenching read Average writing and storytelling, but great story that pulls at your heartstrings and is easy to read.
Date published: 2018-02-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Heartbreaking and Heartwarming I started this book while on vacation and ended up finishing it the same day. Mark shares the reality of loving someone with a mental illness. His story will both warm your heart and break your heart!
Date published: 2018-01-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Powerful Such an inspirational and powerful book - I definitely recommend picking this one up! #plumreview
Date published: 2018-01-18
Rated 2 out of 5 by from I wanted to like this One of those books that I thought had a lot of potential. I really wanted to like it. I have an understanding of those suffering from mental illness bother personally and professionally, and the descriptions of Giulia’s breakdown and struggles are harrowing, but the way Mark at times seems to paint himself as a martyr, and while he does describe his wife as "lovely" you never learn anything about her, other than that she has a mental illness.
Date published: 2018-01-17
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Touching I think this couple was rather lucky and privileged but I did appreciate the insight of the husband as a caregiver. I would very much like to read the book from the perspective of the wife. A decent audiobook.
Date published: 2017-12-29
Rated 3 out of 5 by from sad The book started off with Mark and his wife happy and healthy, with a picture perfect life. Then all of a sudden his wife Giulia snaps. She suddenly thinks that things aren't right and no one is safe. So in trying to help her Mark places her in a psych ward to try to help her cope. I really enjoyed this book it was told from Mark's point of view. Which made it more compassionate then if it was told another way. I also liked it because you could really feel the love that he has for his wife even as she is slowly deteriorating. So sad, it really makes you think what would you do if you were places in that same situation? The worst part was that even though Giulia was not all there she was still deeply concerned for the safety of her family. It was so sad to watch her worry about their safety with such anguish when there was no reason for her to be worried at all. Very well written everyone must read this one at least twice.
Date published: 2017-12-17
Rated 3 out of 5 by from I'm on the fence I think that Lukach and his wife are to be commended for putting their story out there. There is still so much stigma surrounding mental health despite how "advanced" and "modern" we think we are. This book is definitely a conversation starter - and it is one that acknowledges the unique nature and challenges that those with mental health diagnoses and their families face. Each diagnosis is experienced differently by each person and must therefore be treated and managed differently. Holy cow, though. Lukach writes about exercising nearly as much as he writes about Giulia's experience with mental illness. You're fit. We get it. I'm also fairly convinced that if he had been the one with the mental illness, Giulia would have managed to keep the home fires burning with half the help. That being said, he is clearly a man who loves his wife and a man who takes his vows seriously. I wish them and their son the very best.
Date published: 2017-12-06
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Couldn't get into it I found it to be quite dry..
Date published: 2017-12-05
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Overall good Wasn't my favourite book of the year, but it was a pretty decent read. At times I was fascinated and found myself reading quickly and at other times I lost interest.
Date published: 2017-11-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Incredible Loved every second of this book, it was heartbreaking and heartwarming all at the same time. I would definitely recommend this to anyone especially those struggling with mental illness or who loves someone that does.
Date published: 2017-11-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Beautiful and Heart-Warming Read! Bought this book about two weeks ago and it was so well written that readers could get a sense as if they knew the characters in reality. It was an outstadning book and it was beautiful to see the husbands upporting his wife through good times and bad; just as he has promised. Although, it will make you cry or sometimes even upset thinking similiarities to yourself or possibly someone you know so jsut be in the right state of mind; still I definitely recommend this book;
Date published: 2017-11-09
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A heart-wrenching read This book was very difficult to put down. I was on the edge of my seat, waiting to see what happened next and when she would be admitted again. This book brings great awareness to mental health. Her husband went through so much, but not once did he give up on her.
Date published: 2017-11-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Heart-wrenchingly beautiful This is an amazing book, I loved every minute of it. Mark tells his experience about when his wife fell mentally ill and psychotic, then severely depressed. It is a raw, honest account of what it is like to be married and care for a spouse who is mentally ill.
Date published: 2017-11-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from amazing book! very captivating, and well written
Date published: 2017-10-24
Rated 1 out of 5 by from just couldn't get into this book I am glad that I got this book from the library and didn't buy it. I just couldn't get into this book, I gave it my 50 page trial to see if I liked it and I had to push myself to get that far.
Date published: 2017-10-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Captivating and Heartwrenching This book hits close to home because I have family members with severe mental illness. I began reading and couldn't put the book down. If you or a loved one struggles with mental illness, or even if the topic simply interests you.. this is a must read! It's so well-written and heartfelt. Powerful author!
Date published: 2017-10-07
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A lovely story Heart wrenching story as you'd expect it to be.
Date published: 2017-09-30
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Powerful Read This is a book you will want to have a clear head for/
Date published: 2017-09-25
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great! Love can and does conquer all indeed.
Date published: 2017-09-20
Rated 3 out of 5 by from good quite a nice read, I really enjoyed it.
Date published: 2017-09-17
Rated 4 out of 5 by from yes I enjoyed this book so much
Date published: 2017-09-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Book! I enjoyed this book so much. It demonstrated the impact mental illness has on the whole family.
Date published: 2017-09-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from EXCELLENT book As somebody who struggles daily with mental illness, I thought this book was excellent. Read it in a day. High recommend!
Date published: 2017-09-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing This book is amazing, I finished it in a day and a half, (only because I had to work!). Seriously, if Mental Health interests you, or you are a compassionate and empathetic person... this is a fantastic read. So happy I read the reviews and decided to pick this up. Kudos to Mark, clearly an amazing family man!
Date published: 2017-09-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Book This was a wonderful read, and really gave a realistic picture of mental illness.
Date published: 2017-08-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from LOVED!! This book stole my heart from the very first page!!!! Such a unique and honest story describing the impact of mental health on ones family. Made me laugh and brought me to tears! Such an amazing read!
Date published: 2017-08-21
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great book!!! Very nice and lovely book.
Date published: 2017-07-31
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I really enjoyed this book. I agree that this book was heartbreaking but it was also a story filled with hope. I found myself on a constant rollercoaster with this book and couldn't put it down. I think it is not only a good read, but an important one as mental health affects us all.
Date published: 2017-07-20
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Heartbreaking and devastating. A painful and realistic depiction of the North American mental health system and its affects on the patient and family. Unfortunately, I kept reading the book waiting to reach to the hopeful part of the story, but it seems to spiral in a downward direction after the first chapter. Left me feeling depressed and at a loss for words.
Date published: 2017-07-18
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Well Written But Wasn't A Huge Fan I had high hopes for this book, but found it to be a little boring.
Date published: 2017-07-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A Must Read For those of you who have read Brain on Fire - this could be comparable, but it is better. A great story and understanding of mental health.
Date published: 2017-07-09
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Interesting Read It was great to read such an honest account about the mental health experience from a spouse's perspective. Shedding light on some of the struggles that families can experience, this one would be a good read for anyone sharing such a journey, including patient, spouse, family members, and healthcare professionals alike. It would be interesting to see a companion book - the patient's perspective in relation to the author's experiences...
Date published: 2017-07-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Must Read, Gut-wrenching Memoir Compelling, emotional, and exceptionally honest. Lukach transports his readers into the midst of his situation. One does not feel like an outsider, a fly on the wall, while reading this book. The emotions are tangible. The pain, palpable. You are not watching Lukach, you are experiencing his trials with him. While not an emotionally easy read, it is a must read. This powerful, intimate peek into the lives of this couple provides a fascinating study of love, mental illness, familial struggle.
Date published: 2017-06-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Best book I've read in a long time Very talented author. This book does a tremendous job of illustrating the impact of mental illness. A must read for everyone
Date published: 2017-06-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I loved this! So beautiful. Anyone interested in the topic of mental health should read this!
Date published: 2017-06-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A Touching Novel beautifully written, opens eyes in terms of the mental health field
Date published: 2017-06-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Hauntingly beautiful Heartfelt and touching, sad and poignant. Mental Health is no joke, and it takes books like this, and the strength of families like this to share. I would 100% recommend this book to anyone who has battled their mental health, or has friends or family who do.
Date published: 2017-05-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Heartbreakingly beautiful. Finished this memoir within a day. This has easily claimed a spot as one of my favourite books. Lukach writes superbly with real, raw emotion that I am not used to reading. He tells it like it is. I applaud his wife for her bravery throughout her breakdowns and I am so grateful that they have chosen to share this aspect of their lives publicly. It helped me so much. As the daughter of an immigrant father diagnosed with bipolar disorder, I felt like I was reading my life story. I would never wish this life on anyone, but it felt so good to know that I am not alone. Lukach family, you will forever be in my prayers. Please continue to persevere through the hardship.
Date published: 2017-05-25
Rated 4 out of 5 by from loved it really enjoyed this. beautifully written. opens your mind and eyes about something that is happening and how it affects everyone.
Date published: 2017-05-12
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A Must Read I just finished this very human, heartfelt book and although mental illness does not plague anyone in my family, I have a dear friend who has had similar experiences to Guillia. It has raised my awareness of mental illness and how it can affect everyone in it's path. Thank you Mark and Guillia, for opening your hearts to your experience and sharing it with the rest of the world. This book is amazingly written and very word felt.
Date published: 2017-05-09

Editorial Reviews

“The deeply passionate account of the couple’s journey through Giulia’s psychotic break and recovery…through it all Lukach explores the fragility of the human mind alongside the resilience of true love and partnership.”