5 New Memoirs Exploring Mental Health

Take a break and do a little mind reading this weekend.

When it comes to mental illness, “reading about another person’s experience can give you a different perspective, a sense of connectedness, and anecdotal information that you might not find in a textbook,” says Larchmont-based psychotherapist Colette Lopane, MA, LMHC, LPC. “Memoirs that deal with mental illness can provide encouragement, empathy, hope, even coping skills.”  Here are five recent mental-health memoirs that we think do just that.

This Close to Happy

by Daphne Merkin; Farrar Straus and Giroux (February 2017)

Hailed as “one of the most accurate…accounts of depression” by the Wall Street Journal, Merkin’s candid journey through life with clinical depression is compelling in its insight, bravery, and beautifully written prose.

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My Lovely Wife in the Psych Ward

by Mark Lukach; Harper Wave (May 2017) 

When Mark Lukach’s wife, Giulia, suddenly begins experiencing psychotic episodes, their storybook marriage is upended. Lukach’s memoir details the couple’s frightening and challenging journey — and the power of love and commitment.

No One Cares About Crazy People

by Ron Powers; Hachette Books (March 2017)

Pulitzer Prize-winning author Ron Powers incorporates his sons’ battles with schizophrenia with a gripping history of society’s failure to properly acknowledge and treat mental illness in the US.

Another Kind of  Madness

by Stephen Hinshaw; St. Martin’s Press (June 2017)

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Stephen Hinshaw spent 18 years unaware that his father suffered from long-misdiagnosed bipolar disorder. Here, he pieces together his dad’s difficult life while reflecting on the destructive stigma behind mental illness.

Crazy Is My Superpower

by AJ Mendez Brooks; Crown Archetype (April 2017)

Three-time WWE champion AJ Mendez Brooks, who was diagnosed with bipolar disorder as a teen, opens up about the inner demons that nearly consumed her in this candid account of her illness and her road to self-acceptance.


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