Because Oceane had just turned eighteen when she tried to end her life, the hospital had to respect her request: to not notify her parents. Years later, when Oceane asked her mother, Cécile, to write something together about this period of their lives, she never expected that Cécile would already have so many pages hidden away, filled with words that she began to write when she eventually learned of Oceane's suicide attempt.
In The Silence Between Us, Oceane pieces together her story through old diary entries, emails, hospital records and psychiatric reports, interspersed with Cécile's own intense account of caring for her fiercely independent daughter. Slowly we learn about the intergenerational violence, trauma and poverty that forced the chasm between Oceane and Cécile, as well as the campus sexual assault that pushed Oceane over the edge. As Oceane lets Cécile back into her life and they attempt to negotiate both the mental health and legal systems, we also see the fractures start to mend.
At once delicate and unflinching, The Silence Between Us dares to say all the things we'd rather avoid, especially between mother and daughter.
Includes foreword by psychiatrist Pat McGorry AO, professor of youth mental health and former Australian of the Year.