Up and Down Mom
Illustrator: Summer Macon
Child’s Play International
Up and Down Mom, illustrated by Summer Macon, is a candid look at what it’s like to be a child of a parent with bipolar disorder.
The narrator’s mother is a great storyteller, a good cook, and fun to play with. But she also sometimes can’t get out of bed, is embarrassing, or has to go somewhere else to be taken care of.
Our narrator is matter-of-fact about it all. It is, after all, what they are used to. And they have a grandfather, a neighbor, and friends who can help out when their mother is sick. But as the narrator says:
“Most days are fine.
But sometimes Mom seems like someone different.
It’s usually fun, but it can also be a bit scary.
“Everyone has days when they feel happier than others,
but for your mom it’s more extreme,” Grandad says.
“It’s like she is riding on a roller coaster.”
I think she is my Up and Down Mom.”
I’m not sure I’ve ever seen a picture book paint such an honest and straightforward treatment of a mental disorder in a parent, and I can imagine what a relief it would provide for young readers to see that parts of their story are shared with others.
I’m grateful the narrator has such a strong support system. I wish the same for all the kids dealing with similar issues in real life.
More books for this Age Group can be found here.
My thanks to Child’s Play International for providing a Review Copy of this book. All opinions provided herein are my own.
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