So Long, For Now…and What’s Next


It’s hard to believe, but this will be the last “Editor’s Corner” that I write for MIA’s Mad in the Family department. As of March 1, I’ll be stepping down from my post as Family Resources Editor to become a freelance editorial consultant and independent journalist. My first project, with Brown University’s Climate Social Science Network, will return me to the environment beat as I help develop and edit a pair of books on climate change politics. I’m not really going anywhere, though: I will continue to contribute articles and blogs to Mad in America.

As the date gets closer, I find myself choking up—this role has been one of the most meaningful things I’ve done with my life. Since 2008, after I narrowly escaped a lifetime of stigmatizing labels and debilitating drugs during a personal crisis, it’s been my mission to seek and share humane, scientifically sound alternatives to psychiatry-as-usual. And here, I’ve not only had the privilege of bearing intimate witness to the harrowing and inspiring stories of so many families and individuals, but also of guiding them in telling those stories and giving them a platform. Their voices, and those of the innovative thought leaders, researchers, creators, and wise counselors I’ve managed to assemble on our pages, now comprise the body of resources within MIA’s family section. If they have helped even one person… or moved the needle just a fraction toward reinventing mental health care…then my intention has been fulfilled.

Thankfully, there will be no gaps in this coverage, as I will be passing the editorial torch into the hands of MIA’s staff reporter, Amy Biancolli. You may recall her many investigative pieces on Mad in America’s front page, some of which also appeared in this section. To name just two: a piece on the Nurtured Heart Approach to raising kids and a look behind the scenes at the mental health crises on college campuses.

A journalist with decades of experience writing about the arts, culture, film, and other topics for the Albany Times Union, the Houston Chronicle, and Hearst Newspapers, Amy is the author of three books—two of them memoirs of loss and grief. Her most recent, Figuring Shit Out: Love, Laughter, Suicide, and Survivalis an account of the year following the suicide of her husband. Equally important for this gig, she’s a mom of three and well knows the joys and tribulations of childrearing. Amy will soon be publishing a more detailed blog about herself, what she hopes to accomplish here, and how readers can help her make this section the best it can be.

Please stay in touch! I’m on Twitter (DMs open: @mirandacspencer) and Mastodon (@[email protected]).



Mad in America hosts blogs by a diverse group of writers. These posts are designed to serve as a public forum for a discussion—broadly speaking—of psychiatry and its treatments. The opinions expressed are the writers’ own.


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  1. Dear Miranda,

    I greatly appreciated your help in writing my essay for Mad in the Family last year, and I’ve been impressed with all the work you contributed to MIA. You will be missed, but I look forward to learning about your newest ventures. Sadly, I’m not on Twitter or Mastadon, but I’m sure I’ll find you along the way!

    All the best,
    Ann Bracken

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