Storycorps: Couple Shares Tale Of Life With Bipolar Disorder (Transcript) | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

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Storycorps: Couple Shares Tale Of Life With Bipolar Disorder

MS. REBECCA SHEIR

00:00:03
We end today's show with a very personal tale, recorded recently at the Storycorps booth in Arlington, Va. Lizabeth Schuch sat down for a conversation with her boyfriend of five years, Jim Talley. And as you'll hear their conversation took a rather unexpected turn.

MR. JIM TALLEY

00:00:20
You've written a book and I was wondering, why did you write the book?

MS. LIZABETH SCHUCH

00:00:26
Well, I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder when I was 17 and I was a senior in high school, that was back in 1984. And I had pretty serious manic episode. I'd never had any signs prior to that and I was hospitalized for a month, which was pretty traumatic, as you can imagine.

MS. LIZABETH SCHUCH

00:00:51
And some point in there I had this desire, I just knew someday I was going to be able to help people because of this illness and that I was going to able to make a difference.

TALLEY

00:01:02
So you started on a book?

SCHUCH

00:01:04
I did. I started writing a book way back, probably 20 years ago and I wrote about my manic episodes and about how I was able maintain a normal life, you know, in between those. And I wanted to provide some hope for people. But I handwrote, put it in a notebook and then I put it on the shelf.

SCHUCH

00:01:31
In the year 2000 I experienced my first serious depression that opened me to more depressions. But soon after that I realized now I could write the book to the full gamut of the illness, both the manias and the depressions. And now I was ready. And I started typing everything that was in the binder and then I went on further and I wrote that in about a year.

TALLEY

00:02:05
Yes, so what's the status of the book now?

SCHUCH

00:02:09
Well, so I finally decided that I was going to go ahead and self-publish and it's set to be published in November. So it's going to be a reality pretty darn soon.

TALLEY

00:02:22
And what's the title of the book?

SCHUCH

00:02:24
"More Than Bipolar" and the subtitle is "A Memoir of Acceptance and Hope."

TALLEY

00:02:31
So, of course, we've been dating about five years now and one of the things that I told you years ago is that we would get married when you first finished the book. So how do you see our relationship going forward?

SCHUCH

00:02:48
Well, I expect that we get married.

TALLEY

00:02:50
Really?

SCHUCH

00:02:51
Well, the book's almost done.

TALLEY

00:02:54
Yes.

SCHUCH

00:02:55
If you're true to your word.

TALLEY

00:02:57
Really?

SCHUCH

00:02:57
And you've been telling people, you've been telling family, our friends...

TALLEY

00:03:01
What have I been telling them?

SCHUCH

00:03:02
That we're getting married when the book is done.

TALLEY

00:03:04
Really?

SCHUCH

00:03:04
Yes.

TALLEY

00:03:06
Okay.

SCHUCH

00:03:07
So don't you, what do you see for our future?

TALLEY

00:03:10
Well, I'm very proud of you and you are a passionate and compassionate person and we wouldn't have been dating for five years if I didn't think that. So I would like to ask you, will you marry me?

SCHUCH

00:03:28
Yes.

TALLEY

00:03:30
Thank you.

SCHUCH

00:03:33
My gosh, wow. Wow.

TALLEY

00:03:40
Did you expect that?

SCHUCH

00:03:41
No.

TALLEY

00:03:42
No?

SCHUCH

00:03:44
I love you with all my heart.

TALLEY

00:03:46
I love you, too, and I'm very lucky to have you.

SCHUCH

00:03:50
I'm lucky to have you, too.

SHEIR

00:04:01
That was Lizabeth Schuch speaking with her boyfriend and now, fiancé, Jim Talley. Storycorps is the oral history project that gives Americans the chance to record, share and preserve the stories of their lives. For more info about the Storycorps booth that's currently in Arlington, head to our website, metroconnection.org.

SHEIR

00:04:56
And that's "Metro Connection" for this week. We heard from WAMU's Jonathan Wilson, Sabri Ben-Achour, Tara Boyle, Jacob Fenston and Emily Friedman. Our acting news director is Meymo Lyons. Our managing producer is Tara Boyle. Lauren Landau is our editorial assistant. Our intern is Raphaella Bennin. Lauren Landau and Raphaella Bennin produce "Door to Door." Thanks, as always, to the WAMU engineering and digital media teams for their help with production and the "Metro Connection" website.

SHEIR

00:05:21
Our theme song, ''Every Little Bit Hurts" and our "Door to Door" theme "No, Girl," are from the album "Title Tracks" by John Davis and used with permission of the Ernest Jennings Record Company. You can see all the music we use on our website, metroconnection.org. Just click on a story and you'll find information about its accompanying song.

SHEIR

00:05:38
Also on metroconnection.org you can find our Twitter and facebook links, you can read free transcripts of stories and if you missed part of today's show you can hear the whole thing by clicking the this week on "Metro Connection" link. To hear our most recent episodes click the podcast link or find us on iTunes.

SHEIR

00:05:55
We hope you can join us next week when we'll be On the Move. We'll learn the different ways deaf and hearing people interact with city landscapes. We'll find out why the local skateboarding scene is becoming more popular and more diverse. And we'll meet a road-tripping man with a mission, to visit the gravesites of U.S. presidents.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE ONE

00:06:13
You know, some kids are real into dinosaurs, some kids are into outer space. My thing was presidents and nothing has changed.

SHEIR

00:06:20
I'm Rebecca Sheir and thanks for listening to "Metro Connection," a production of WAMU 88.5 news.
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