‘For Hilary, Elizabeth, the 1-in-20’ published at Free Verse Revolution

Issue V of Free Verse Revolution’s literary magazine is out today, and is entitled ‘Cassandra: Prophecy and Deceit.’ I am honoured to be included amongst the list of contributors. For this issue, I submitted a poem about PMDD, a pre-menstrual disorder which affects up to 1 in 20 women of reproductive age, most of whom will be undiagnosed, or misdiagnosed with conditions such as Bipolar Disorder or Borderline Personality Disorder. You can find out more about the condition from the IAPMD Website. I have been suffering from this condition for at least 7 years now, and it took me a long time, and a hard fight to receive a diagnosis. I then had to advocate to receive the appropriate treatment, whilst battling this debilitating condition at the same time. Happily, I am due to begin a new (and hopefully effective) treatment next week. Follow me on Instagram @PMDDIng for updates, and feel free to message me if you want to know more about the condition.

For Hilary, Elizabeth, the 1-in-20

My great aunt Hilary
was 15
when they locked her up
in an asylum
and she lived there until she died, young
pumped with drugs and ECT,
a stranger to her own mind

My mother Elizabeth
was 15 when her troubles began
Anorexia, Bulimia, Schizophrenia
in and out of hospital
overdose after overdose
of ineffective medicine
until she took the plunge and died, aged 33…

Download the latest copy of FVR magazine to continue reading. In this poem, I write about my mum and great aunt, who may have had the condition. Researchers believe it is hereditary, but of course, I will never know for sure, because PMDD was not a known condition back then. It is still barely recognised today, but very real for those suffering from it. This issue also contains an interview where I talk about my poetry, publishing activities, and PMDD advocacy. Many thanks to editor Kristiana for providing me with a platform to discuss this.

The photo shows me and my mum, c.1985

40 thoughts on “‘For Hilary, Elizabeth, the 1-in-20’ published at Free Verse Revolution

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  1. Congratulations, Ingrid! It’s a brave and sad poem. And essential to awareness. All these issues that need to be heard but that get drowned in the morass of money and war.

  2. Wow–you look so much like your mother, Ingrid!
    Thank you for sharing what your mother and great aunt experienced, and congratulations on the publication. Good luck with the new treatment!

  3. Ingrid, my sincere condolences for how the world responded to your mom and aunt when they deserved sensitive and informed response. I’m glad things are different for you and that you are advocating successfully for what you need. Congratulations for getting the word out there and for the being published.

    1. Thank you Lisa πŸ™ I do wonder how often and in how many parts of the world this tale is repeated, but crying over it doesn’t do any good: it’s time to fight for the healthcare we deserve!

      1. Bloody hell Ingrid what a sad, lovely, poem that is. Sorry to hear about your mam. Life can be terribly shitty can’t it. Hope the new treatment works well.

  4. Your mother looks so like you!
    In just this opening of your poem, I am blown away by the emotion and feeling. This issue is sure indeed to continue to enrapture me throughout and I look forward to enjoying your interview. <3

  5. I read the meaningful and informative interview. I admire your efforts to promote awareness of PMDD. You tell your story in the poignant poem in a forthright, but sensitive manner that I also admire. Love the photo of you and your mother! The resemblence between the two of you is striking! <3 Have a lovely week! <3

  6. Your poem is so heartfelt with honest sharing that is so hard to fathom. I’m so hopeful for your next treatment and prayerful that you will have a turn around fingers crossed!
    Congratulations on the interview and making a difference in women’s lives Ingrid! πŸ’–πŸ™πŸ’–πŸ™πŸ’–πŸ’–πŸ™

  7. Congratulations, Ingrid, on your inclusion in the Free Verse Revolution’s literary magazine. πŸ‘πŸ» Your creative talent, honest voice, and perseverance are inspirational. Best wishes on your new treatment next week. 🌸

  8. This must have been such a tough write, Ingrid! Carrying the burden of despair and disorder. I do hope the new treatment will give you some relief.
    You look so much like your mom.
    I loved your interview. I truly look up to you, Ingrid. ❀️

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