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Pretend Friends

A story about schizophrenia and other illnesses that can cause hallucinations

Alice Hoyle, illustrated by Lauren Reis

Quick Overview

Schizophrenia is explained to children (4+) through a simple story comparing a child's fun imaginary friends to the voices that can be brought on by schizophrenia or psychosis. Little Bea talks about all the fun things she does with her pretend friend and Big Jay explains how his friends are very different and what people can do to support him.
Details Price Qty
Hardback
2015, 8.27in x 8.27in / 210mm x 210mm, 36pp
ISBN: 978-1-84905-624-3
£8.99

Description

Little Bea has a pretend friend, so does Big Jay. Their pretend friends are very different and people react very differently to them. Little Bea has lots of fun adventures with her pretend friend Nye Nye. Big Jay's pretend friends don't make him happy, in fact they can make life quite hard for Big Jay.

This full colour story book helps to explain in a child-friendly way what life is like for those who hear voices or have other hallucinations or delusions as a result of mental illness. Appropriate for children aged 4 and above, it describes why these auditory and visual hallucinations are very different to the enjoyable imaginary friends many children create, and explains some of the things that may help people like Big Jay.

Reviews

'As an adult living with schizophrenia, I love the idea of introducing young children to the concept of severe mental illnesses, to help them learn not to be afraid of adults living with one. Hopefully if children can learn about mental health at a young age, they will grow up into understanding adults, less likely to have stigmatising beliefs about mental illness.'
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'This excellent picture book explains to young children the differences in having a jolly play-like character that they know is not real and having to put up with pretend people who are equally not real but seem so to those who suffer from them. Aimed at children who have contact in their live with people suffering from schizophrenia or psychosis or other forms of serious mental illness... An unusual story about a serious problem not often explained to younger children and hence a most welcome addition to the literature.'
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'This is a charming little book that could help children whose parents or carers have mental health problems... What I really liked about the book was that it promoted a healthy and non-judgmental view about mental health for children to adopt... The illustrations by Lauren Reis are rich, colourful and beautiful and enhance this lovely book... so attractive and the subject is compelling to mental health professionals.'
- Jo North, Psychotherapist

Authors

By (author): Alice Hoyle
Illustrated by: Lauren Reis