Tormented by bullies in childhood, the author’s onset of OCD at the age of 16 took the form of horrific intrusive thoughts involving his bullies. He aims to raise public awareness that bullying has long been causing needless suffering in the lives of countless nice, intelligent, and sensitive people.
Overcoming his OCD through effective treatment, as well as love and support from his family and his own intelligence and inner strength, the author has become a professional public speaker focusing on the prevention of bullying. He is based in Minnesota; he will be available in person in Texas during OCD Awareness Week, Oct 14-20, for media interviews and speaking engagements, as well as by phone and Internet.
I wish this wonderful, honest, engaging book could be required reading in college introductory psychology courses. It shows a nice young man, healthy, intelligent, loved by his family, descending into the hell of OCD — nightmarish intrusive thoughts and agonizing, exhausting behaviors he felt he had to perform to prevent harm to people he loved. It shows the isolation that so many people with OCD have experienced, hiding their secret thoughts and rituals for years from their involved and caring parents (even his mother, a PhD psychologist, was unaware of his condition), suffering needlessly, thinking they must surely be crazy and bad beyond redemption, until finally finding the right diagnosis and the right treatment. It also shows the social-emotional impact of “a life interrupted” by OCD, and his struggle, after finally getting his OCD under control, to develop skills necessary for more satisfying career and personal relationships.
Honest, compelling and at times unnerving, Life Interrupted keeps you both interested and entertained. Sumi did an incredible job of sharing the raw truth about growing up as a bullied individual while tying in the OCD connection. It is easy to read a book which can clearly be understood by anyone who works with individuals living with OCD. I have a clearer idea of what these children live with on a day in and day out basis now that I have read Sumi’s book. I once had a very narrow view of OCD. That view has been expanded. The book has given me insight on how to work better with Youth in Crisis.
Sumi’s explanation of the life challenges he went through growing up being bullied doesn’t make a person feel sorry for him but proud of him. I’ve worked individually with Sumi to bring his story to the Minnesota School System. He is opening the gateway for the suffering to stop. Thousands of conversations are now being started by children who have been bullied. They may never have had the opportunity to share their thoughts and feelings about being bullied if they had not read his book or heard him speak.
My recommendation is to read Life Interrupted, share it and talk about it.
Exlibris and Amazon Kindle editions — See also the author’s website on bullying and OCD.