Deborah Vlock Ph.D.

Deborah Vlock, Ph.D.

Deborah Vlock is a Boston-based writer of fiction and creative non-fiction. Her new book, PARENTING CHILDREN WITH MENTAL HEALTH CHALLENGES: A GUIDE TO LIFE WITH EMOTIONALLY COMPLEX KIDS will land in bookstores and in libraries/online on November 8, 2018. Her work has been published in print and online, and can be found in literary journals and glossy magazines, as well as on newsy and literary blogs. O, the Oprah MagazineThe Huffington PostHunger MountainLiterary MamaThe Missouri Review BlogYARN (Young Adult Review Network), and The Atlantic Magazine online have all recently featured Deborah’s work.

Deborah is the mother of two remarkable teenagers, one of whom has struggled with mental illness since age four. A veteran (along with her son) of the pediatric psych unit, and a survivor of way too many night watches, she has found such clever solutions for hiding sharp household objects in the middle of the night, that certain scissors and a wobbly-handled steak knife have gone missing for good. She has also mastered the art of using the bathroom (but only when absolutely necessary) while keeping track of a child hell-bent on hurting himself. Hers has been a life filled with pain, terror, exhaustion, illness, and on occasion, utter, transcendent joy. Oh, and with writing—thank goodness! She is dedicated to making connections and sharing stories and resources with other parents and/or writers, and welcomes comments and questions on this forum.

Deborah counts herself lucky to live with the three best people on this earth: her husband (known to readers as “Lars”), her daughter (“Saskia”), and her son, (“Benjy”). You can find links to some of her writing on her website,

And to anticipate your question: yes, everyone is still living.

Author of

What to Expect When You Get the Unexpected

A mother’s notes on childhood mental illness Read now.