By Evan Wechman
18Ever since I was a child, I wanted to be a writer. I’ve been writing for different publications in New Jersey, including this one for several years. However, my dream has always been to complete a book that adds something of value to the community.
Unfortunately, since I was a child, I’ve suffered immensely from obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) which has taken its toll on both me and my family. There were a lot of things I wanted to accomplish in my life that got sidetracked due to this illness which is all too prevalent.
For me, the turning point came when as a young adult, my father confided in me that he had OCD and was still able to make a good life for himself. He also told me he would always love me and believed I could get better.
That changed everything and, in my book, “Family Illness,” this beautiful story is told. My father passed away from Covid in 2020 and I never got the chance to present him with a copy. This book was intended to be my way of letting my Dad know he was my hero, and that I never would have survived without his love.
My father who taught at several universities throughout New Jersey including Ramapo College and Saint Peters University grew up in a time when mental health was not discussed and
was forced to live in silence for a great period of time. I believe our society has made significant progress, but we still have great strides to make.
The love a family can provide to someone suffering from OCD or any mental illness can help immensely. This book is aimed primarily at those who are in pain, their families, and professionals serving this population as well.
I am trying to tell a good story but at the same time, provide comfort as well. I have been touched by the outpouring of support from therapists who specialize in OCD treatment. One such local psychotherapist said “Evan’s writing style makes his book enjoyable and eye opening for people struggling with OCD, their family members and clinicians in mental health. Evan’s story can resonate with thousands of people suffering from OCD.”
In the past, I have worked with a variety of families throughout New Jersey, forming and working with them in support groups. There is no magic pill, and this book is not going to solve all problems associated with the illness. However, I sincerely hope it lends a compassionate and compelling voice to the mental health community.
At this point, I have started under the tutelage of Livingston Author and Entrepreneur Barry Farber to place my books in non-traditional settings. For example, I am in the process of seeking partnerships with cafes and restaurants to place my book by the register rather than having it get lost in a bookstore surrounded by thousands of other books. At these locations, I will be providing signed copies of the book along with brochures and other information about mental health.
To give back more to the community, a portion of these sales will go towards mental health groups fighting stigma.
If anyone would like to purchase an autographed copy, I can be emailed at email@example.com. My books can also be found online at www.amazon.com/Family-Illness-Evan-Wechman/dp/1647503485.