In this captivating story about mental health and the bonds of sisterhood, one young woman struggles against the bonds of her illness, while another searches for the right way to offer support. Miranda has always been the responsible one, so when her younger sister Lucia starts to hear voices, Miranda tries everything she can to help her. Despite her best efforts, however, Lucia continues down a self-destructive path until, ultimately, both women must confront her mental illness head-on, or risk losing everything, including each other. A truly remarkable book about love, belonging, and sacrifi .
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Mental health, along with the illnesses that can plague us, make up some of the most taboo, stigmatized topics of discussion within our society today. Historically speaking, society has always had a difficult time equating mental illnesses with the same sincerity physical illnesses foster. It's almost as if there's this underlying belief that people can think their way out of mental illnesses as opposed to receiving professional medical treatment.
However, within the past five or so years there has been such an uprise in the media of people coming out of the corners, shedding their shame, and openly sharing their struggles with mental health that the way we view mental illnesses has begun dramatically shifting for the better. This is even despite the stigmas society has already planted; it's a shift that has been so necessary. Mental health is just as crucial to us as our physical health; we cannot function as whole, healthy, happy humans when the neurons in our brains are preventing us from doing so.
Stigmatizing mental health only harms our society more; insinuating that there is something to be ashamed or embarrassed of only prevents people from seeking the help they need.
It's important that we are open about our struggles. It's vital that we are receptive to the struggles of those around us. We have to uplift and support each other, always standing up for the insanely complicated complexities of what it is to be human. If you or someone you know is struggling, here are hotlines that solely exist to support you. Don't be afraid to utilize them, there is no shame in feeling trapped inside of that dark, lonely place our minds can sometimes go: : 1-800-273-8255 : 1-800-662-HELP (4357) : 1-800-64-PANIC (72642) : (800)-931-2237 : (212)-673-3000 : Text CONNECT to 741741 from anywhere in the USA, anytime, about any type of crisis and a live, trained Crisis Counselor will receive the text and let you know that they are here to listen.
And, if you're struggling, here are seven memoirs of people who may have been in your shoes before and have proven that even the worst is never permanent; we are always capable of recovery. 1. by Jamie Lowe Image Via Amazon In this stunning memoir, one woman brings us into her struggle with and the that grounded her, kept her hallucinations at bay, and led her to lead a healthy, normal life. This was for twenty years before doctors told her it was destroying her kidneys and forced her to choose between functioning kidneys, or the little pink pills that saved her life.
Lowe takes us on a raw, honest journey as she adjusts to a new medication while traveling to Bolivia and examining the world's largest lithium mines and learn all of the mysteries about the drug that kept her sane. Everything around me came into question: What was real, what was imaginary?
What was genuine feeling and what was the disorder? Who was I in relationship to the disease? What was mental illness? How long had it been around? 2. by Rachel Kelly Image Via Amazon This book details Times journalist Rachel Kelly's struggle with moderate anxiety that, in a period of only three days, suddenly progressed to severe, debilitating depression.
She delves deep into the darkest periods of her life and how reading poetry helped her to heal in more ways than she could've ever guessed. Filled with the very poems that pulled her out of the void, this memoir acts as a lifeline for when your chest feels heavy and you don't want to be alone. Unlike the moment I fell ill, I can't pinpoint the exact moment I got better. This is a relative term. Depression has changed everything for me. I will never not need to manage this illness.
The severity of the symptoms comes and goes. The illness is not me; I'm just someone managing it's symptoms, in the way that many people manage many conditions. 3. by Melissa Broder Image Via Amazon This darkly comedic, poetic, and brutally honest collection stems from Broder's viral page; depicting her struggles with anxiety, addiction, eating disorders, obsession, and more.
It's a book everyone can relate to, and a good testament as to why Broder is one of the most popular contemporary writers today. I know I have an ocean of sadness inside me and I have been damming it my entire life. I have always imagined that something was supposed to rescue me from the ocean. But maybe the ocean is its own ultimate rescue – a reprieve from the linear mind and into the world of feeling. Shouldn’t someone have told me this at birth? Shouldn’t someone have said, “Enjoy your ocean of sadness, there is nothing to fear in it,” so I didn’t have to build all those dams?
I think some of us are less equipped to deal with our oceans, or maybe we are just more terrified, because we see and feel a little extra. So we build our shitty dams. But inevitably, the dam always breaks again.
It breaks again and the ocean speaks to me. It says ‘I’m alive and it’s real’. It says, 'I’m going to die, and it’s real. 4. by Emma Forrest Image Via Amazon Emma Forrest's memoir takes a sharp look at her as a twenty-two year old struggling to make it in New York City, growing more manic day-by-day, and falling further into her own vortex of loneliness and destruction.
She begins meeting with a psychiatrist and clinging to him as her own personal safe haven until he suddenly passes, leaving her to now pick up the pieces of her newfound mourning; all while learning how to cope with healing alone.
It is madness. And if you don't know who you are, or if your real self has drifted away from you with the undertow, madness at least gives you an identity. It's the same with self-loathing. You're probably just normal and normal-looking but that's not a real identity, not the way ugliness is. Normality, just accepting that you're probably normal-looking, lacks the force field of self-disgust. If you don't know who you are, madness gives you something to believe in.
5. by Sandra Allen Image Via Amazon In this powerful, poignant memoir that's part-biography, part-historical look, Sandra Allen translates the messy, mistyped, and fully capitalized autobiography her schizophrenic uncle, Bob, mails her one day and blends it alongside a look back at their familial history and the cultural shifts occurring during Bob's adolescence in the sixties and seventies.
This book is such an honest, in-depth look at a mental illness that is still so publicly stigmatized, it will forever change the way you view schizophrenia.
I'M ROBERT: this is a true story of a boy brought up in berkely california durring the sixties and seventies who was unable to identify with reality and there for labeled as a psychotic paranoid schizophrenic for the rest of his life.
6. by Cat Marnell Image Via Amazon In this chaotic, tragic memoir, Cat Marnell details her life as a twenty-six year old associate beauty editor, popular Manhattan socialite, and uninhibited party girl who kept secret her chronic struggles with bulimia, drug addiction, hallucinations, and insomnia from the world who knew her well. This book is such a relatable take on addiction and loneliness it will break your heart.
And you fall deeper and deeper into the earth, but it’s not the earth, exactly, it’s this series of . . . lofts built into the earth like underground tree houses, right, and another floor falls out from under you, and then you are on a different floor of the world, and you are starting to accept that things will never be the same.
7. by Roxane Gay Image Via Amazon In this stunning look at trauma, binge eating disorders, and the dysmorphia beneath it all, Roxane Gay boldly describes her own struggles with food, her body, and the violence that led her here. This all-too-relatable journey of one woman's struggle to save herself as she teeters on the line between self-care and self-destruction will leave anyone feeling capable and empowered.
I buried the girl I had been because she ran into all kinds of trouble. I tried to erase every memory of her, but she is still there, somewhere. She is still small and scared and ashamed, and perhaps I am writing my way back to her, trying to tell her everything she needs to hear. Featured Image via Zeit Online
According to the most recent data from the National Institute of Mental Health, . Despite the fact it is so common, individuals who don't suffer from a condition, and even those who do, still struggle to in 2018.
Luckily, there are some pretty incredible coming out this year that shed an important light on a difficult topic so many of us still have a hard time making sense of. As someone who struggles with depression and anxiety disorders, I have to admit, the nasty rhetoric around in the wake of is a painful one to endure. Whether it is on the news, social media, or in the checkout line, I can't seem to avoid conversations about our "crazy" president.
While I agree that Trump is an unfit candidate for office — his lack of experience, his failed business record, his dangerous nationalist views — I can't help but feel totally misunderstood, if not personally attacked, by a narrative that insists .
It's just simply not true. From famous people like to average Americans like the successful owner of my local yoga studio, there are millions of individuals who have a mental illness, but who still lead happy and productive lives. So why is it that, when we talk about depression, bipolar disorder, anxiety and panic disorders, and those who suffer from them, we insist on believing the same old lies about mental illness?
The truth is, despite the fact that , mental illness is still largely misunderstood. If you are struggling to cope with your own experiences, or trying to understand those of someone you love, here are 10 new and upcoming books about mental health that will provide you with the insight you need, and the nuance the topic deserves.
In this captivating story about mental health and the bonds of sisterhood, one young woman struggles against the bonds of her illness, while another searches for the right way to offer support. Miranda has always been the responsible one, so when her younger sister Lucia starts to hear voices, Miranda tries everything she can to help her.
Despite her best efforts, however, Lucia continues down a self-destructive path until, ultimately, both women must confront her mental illness head-on, or risk losing everything, including each other. A truly remarkable book about love, belonging, and sacrifice, Everything Is Beautiful is powerfully resonant narrative that will touch the hearts of anyone affected by mental illness.
In his new book about the underlying causes of common mental illnesses and how to address them, bestselling author and award-winning journalist Johann Hari argues that depression and anxiety are a direct result of our cultural norms, societal expectations, and the way we live our daily lives. Drawing from personal experience as well and interviews with social scientists actively working in the mental health field, Hari introduces readers to a whole new way of examining mental illness.
Bold and thought-provoking, Lost Connections is a must-read for anyone trying to understand depression, anxiety, and how to address the two biggest issues threatening America's mental health. In this thought-provoking book about schizophrenia, Sandra Allen has crafted a fearless narrative about what it is really like to grow up under the weight of mental illness, based on the real-life experiences of her uncle Bob. A thoughtful adaptation of his own erratic memoir, Allen's autobiography includes rich details of their shared family history, the cultural and historical context, and Bob own experiences coming of age in the 60s and 70s, when he was simply called "crazy" during a time when America was still struggling with terms like "schizophrenic." Honest, heartbreaking, and often humorous, this remarkable book offers a window into an experience of mental illness that many people often never get the chance to see through.
One of the most commonly misunderstood mental illnesses of our modern time is addiction. In her searing memoir about losing her comedian brother to a heroin overdose, debut author Stephanie Wittels Wachs gets to the heart of what makes the disease so hard to understand, and what makes forgiving those who suffer from it even harder. Raw and unapologetic, this commanding debut will reshape the way you see addiction, addicts, and those who love (and lose) them. You may have laughed while watching Jim Carrey's 1998 film The Truman Show, about a man whose life was actually an elaborately planned television program, but this true account of Olympic sailor Kevin Hall's struggle with a psychiatric syndrome that makes him believe the same thing will truly make you think.
A captivating narrative that details the many challenges Hall has faced as a result of his disorder, whether it be the dangerous Director in his head urging him to drive his car into the ocean, or the medical community even his own family's inability to understand his illness. Sharp and compelling, this highly entertaining account will reframe the way you see mental health in everyday life. In this dazzling debut, author Emily X.R.
Pan has created a spellbinding narrative about love, family, and what it means to grieve. When Leigh Chen Sanders's mother commits suicide, she is convinced that she was transformed into a bird, and even more convinced that, if she looks hard enough, she just might be able to find her.
When she travels to Taiwan to meet her maternal grandparents for the first time, Chen throws herself into the search for her mother, and along the way, has to come face to face with the one thing she has tried to avoid: her grief. A sweet and poignant story about loss and letting go, this book is a great introduction for young readers who are trying to understand mental illness and its potential consequences.
When she suffered an extreme psychotic episode during her last semester in college, Charita Cole Brown's doctors were doubtful that she would be able to manage her new diagnosis of bipolar disorder. Despite the odds being stacked against her, however, Brown has managed to live a full life in the face of her illness, one that she chronicles with honesty and understanding in this moving, must-read memoir.
In her penetrating narrative about addiction and its aftermath, bestselling author of The Empathy Exams dismantles everything you thought you knew about recovery.
Drawing from her own life, other addicts' personal experiences, history, literature, criticism, and reporting, Leslie Jamison breaks down the stereotypes that plague our commonly held notions of addiction and presents a refreshingly new way of looking at recovery.
Smart, moving, and relevant, The Recovering is a classic mental health resource in the making. There have been countless books written about anxiety, but few have talked about the illness as a source for power in the way Sarah Wilson's new book about her own journey conquering her condition.
In First, We Make the Beast Beautiful, the author draws from her personal experiences with chronic anxiety and the years she devoted to researching her illness to create a completely new outlook on living life with the disease, one that believes in embracing, not running scared from, the condition. Inspiring and insightful, this part-memoir, part-guidebook is the perfect read for anyone struggling with their own mental health. What is it like to have your mind thrust into the depths of madness and pulled back out again?
In startling detail and with keen insight, Barbara Lipska, leading neuroscientist and mental illness expert, describes her own harrowing, albeit temporary, descent into extreme mental illness in her moving new memoir. While her nightmare only lasted eight weeks, Lipska's experience — one she fully remembers — upended the way she looked mental illness, in herself and others.
A remarkable story about strength, endurance, and human's capacity for recovery, The Neuroscientist Who Lost Her Mind truly captures what it is like to struggle with mental illness.
3 Books to Better Your Mental Health