... celebrity interviews, recipes and health tips in your inbox. She never imagined her high-achieving son would wind up handcuffed, dirty, and in jail. This is a tale of self-loathing, self-sabotage, and yes, self-tanner. We’ve scoured the year’s releases to bring you some of the best memoirs 2020 has to offer. This list of the 50 best mental health and addiction memoirs encompasses a wide scope of diagnoses, functionality, and experiences as diverse as the spectrum of mental illness. Days earlier, she had been on the threshold of a new, adult life: at the beginning of her first serious relationship and a promising career at a major New York newspaper. From his early experiences of sexual violence, to his suspension from college, to time in New York as a college professor, Laymon charts his complex relationship with his mother, grandmother, anorexia, obesity, sex, writing, and ultimately gambling. “Comedian, writer, blogger, radio and podcast host, and YouTube sensation, Sara Benincasa bravely and outrageously brings us ‘Dispatches from My Bedroom’ with Agorafabulous! Her unique and at times unsettling voice graphically illustrates her mental state. “Heart Berries is a powerful, poetic memoir of a woman’s coming of age on the Seabird Island Band in the Pacific Northwest. Why enter into a love affair with hunger, drugs, sex and death? One of the funniest and most poignant books ever written about a mental illness, Agorafabulous! Therapy and showing weakness are not always easy subjects, but if you go to the gym three or four times a week, why can’t you put that same effort and energy into getting mentally strong?” (Amazon). As a child, Sandy had been told Bob was ‘crazy,’ that he had spent time in mental hospitals while growing up in Berkeley in the 60s and 70s. Why would a talented young girl go through the looking glass and step into a netherworld where up is down and food is greed, where death is honor and flesh is weak? Memoirs of mental health and addiction can also fill in the gaps of knowledge that those on the outside need to relate to those struggling with mental illness and addiction. Foster care, sexual abuse, and overwhelming insecurity defined her early years. She discusses the illness in the context of her life, including her struggle to get pregnant, the high expectations she had for herself and that others placed on her as a new mom, and the role of her husband, friends, and family as she struggled to attain her maternal footing in the midst of a disabling depression.” (Amazon), “The former middle distance Olympic runner and high-end escort speaks out for the first time about her battle with mental illness, and how mania controlled and compelled her in competition, but also in life. The story of an outlaw childhood where rules were unheard of, and the Christmas tree stayed up all year round, where Valium was consumed like candy, and if things got dull an electroshock- therapy machine could provide entertainment. Memoirs are more personal. Her memoir, about chronic pain and search for a cure, is a must-read. A story of survival, pain, and transformation, Sick candidly examines the colossal impact of illness on one woman’s life by not just highlighting the failures of a broken medical system but by also boldly challenging our concept of illness narratives.” (Amazon). And her memoir, Redefining Realness, is a truly captivating read that helps explain what it’s like to grow up with the wrong gender assigned to you—and what it’s like to push back. She's written for Women's Health, SHAPE, SELF, Refinery29, Glamour, Cosmopolitan, Teen Vogue, the New York Times, and more. “Stephanie Covington Armstrong does not fit the stereotype of a woman with an eating disorder. While it may seem like he’s ahead of the game, he is actually plagued by anxieties, such as the fear of losing his roots, the fear of being a bad dad, and the fear of being a terrible husband. Hospitalizations, calls in the night, alcohol and drug relapses, pleas for money, and continuous disputes, her son’s journey was long, arduous, and almost fatal. “In 1967, after a session with a psychiatrist she’d never seen before, eighteen-year-old Susanna Kaysen was put in a taxi and sent to McLean Hospital. All rights reserved. In essays that range from using fashion to present as high-functioning to the depths of a rare form of psychosis, and from the failures of the higher education system and the dangers of institutionalization to the complexity of compounding factors such as PTSD and Lyme disease, Wang’s analytical eye, honed as a former lab researcher at Stanford, allows her to balance research with personal narrative. Someone recommended this book to me as a thoughtful, humorous take on what it means to have depression and anxiety—and it really lived up to my expectations. By attempting to name secrets and lies he and his mother spent a lifetime avoiding, he asks us to confront the terrifying possibility that few in this nation actually know how to responsibly love, and even fewer want to live under the weight of actually becoming free.” (Amazon). The result is a heartbreaking and sometimes hilarious portrait of a young man striving for stability in his life as well as his mind, and an utterly unique lens into an experience that, to most people, remains unimaginable.” (Amazon). “Silver Award recipient of IBPA’s prestigious Benjamin Franklin book award in the category of psychology, Losing Dad, Paranoid Schizophrenia: A Family’s Search for Hope is the compelling true story of a family’s struggle with the sudden onset of their father’s severe mental illness. Losing Dad poignantly shows the effects of inadequate treatment for those living with a severe mental illness in America.” (Amazon), “Stacy Pershall grew up as an overly intelligent, depressed, deeply strange girl in Prairie Grove, Arkansas, population 1,000. It’s a complicated memoir about crippling alcoholism, and how substance abuse took over Bydlowska’s life. Revealing how even the most successful people can suffer from depression, DMC offers inspiration for everyone in pain—information and insight that he hopes can help save other lives.” (Amazon). Written with an acute understanding of the ways in which her condition has evolved as well as affected those around her, This Close to Happy is an utterly candid coming-to-terms with an illness that many share but few talk about, one that remains shrouded in stigma. McClelland discovers she is far from alone: while we frequently associate PTSD with wartime combat, it is more often caused by other manner of trauma and can even be contagious-close proximity to those afflicted can trigger its symptoms. Drawing on his own struggles with the illness and interviews with fellow sufferers, doctors and scientists, policy makers and politicians, drug designers, and philosophers, Andrew Solomon reveals the subtle complexities and sheer agony of the disease as well as the reasons for hope. The moving story of an African American family facing the challenge of bipolar disorder, This Fragile Life provides insight into mental disorders as well as family dynamics. Her bewilderment about this sudden loss of control is magnified by the intensity of her feelings for Nico, a French soldier she met in Port-au-Prince and with whom she connected instantly and deeply. Not a mental health memoir per-say, but this book provides an honest account from a survivor regarding trauma and mental health issues following sexual abuse. In sharp and shocking language, Lights On, Rats Out brings us closely into these years. The material on this site may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, cached or otherwise used, except with the prior written permission of Condé Nast. Her crisis of American Indian identity bleeds into other areas of self-doubt; mental illness, sexual trauma, ethnic identity, and independence become intertwined. She is plagued by waking terrors, violent fantasies, and crippling emotional breakdowns. Grubbs ended up donating her own kidney to her now-husband, and throughout the process witnessed first-hand many racial disparities that African-American patients and donors face. Tell Me Everything You Don’t Remember is Lee’s memoir about recovering from her stroke—and what came next. Lori Schiller had entered the horrifying world of full-blown schizophrenia. Her book is a thoughtful meditation on how doctors can empathize with patients, and a call to action for anyone involved in caregiving. The triumphant result is Heart Berries, a memorial for Mailhot’s mother, a social worker and activist who had a thing for prisoners; a story of reconciliation with her father―an abusive drunk and a brilliant artist―who was murdered under mysterious circumstances; and an elegy on how difficult it is to love someone while dragging the long shadows of shame. Manic: A Memoir breaks the reader's misconceptions that the wealthy and beautiful don't suffer from mental health disorders.. Cheney, a lawyer from Beverly Hills, was, by all means, wildly successful. Some of the factors include not being true to who you are, feelings of loneliness, isolation, and alienation, and a lack of understanding and support from friends and family when it’s needed most. Flagrantly manic and terrified that medications would cause her to lose creativity, she began a years-long struggle to find mental stability while retaining her passions and creativity. In A Kind of Mirraculas Paradise: A True Story about Schizophrenia, Sandy translates Bob’s autobiography, artfully creating a gripping coming-of-age story while sticking faithfully to the facts as he shared them. Her body was a canvas of cruelty; each scar a mark of pride and shame. Descriptions graciously supplied from publisher descriptions and condensed when necessary. This New York Times bestseller details the author's struggle with bipolar disorder. So at the age of twelve, Burroughs found himself amidst Victorian squalor living with the doctor’s bizarre family, and befriending a pedophile who resided in the backyard shed. The perspectives of his three children, his spouse, and his own distorted reality combine to offer readers a glimpse of a world that will either feel hauntingly familiar or mind-boggling. The lessons I have learned are not limited to race, gender, or sexual orientation. With so many memoirs centered on hard times ... she later worked there and became increasingly troubled by the safety risks and health ... Perhaps laughter was her best … Goodreads users have selected these as the best autobiographical tales. She interviews scientists, psychiatrists, and patients to examine how effective lithium really is and how its side effects can be dangerous for long-term users—including Lowe, who after twenty years on the medication suffers from severe kidney damage. By age nine, she was secretly bulimic, throwing up at home after school while watching The Brady Bunch reruns on television and munching Fritos. Several drug addictions, some major hospitalizations, and over $100,000 later, she finally had a diagnosis: late-stage Lyme disease. Cahalan was eventually diagnosed with a rare autoimmune disease, and her memoir is absolutely captivating. It begins at a posh New England prep school—and with a prescription for the Attention Deficit Disorder medication Ritalin. With uncommon humanity, candor, wit and erudition, award-winning author Solomon takes readers on a journey of incomparable range and resonance into the most pervasive of family secrets. These accounts can be harrowing, but almost always offer comfort and education. In the beginning it was germs and food. . As the year draws to a close, a number of authors and publishers are welcoming 2021 with a slew of new novels and memoirs for avid book lovers around the world. His contribution to our understanding not only of mental illness but also of the human condition is truly stunning.” (Amazon). Deeply moving and bracingly intimate, Becoming traces Obama's evolution from a young girl growing up on the South Side of Chicago, to a successful lawyer, to mother to Sasha and Malia, to a politician's wife, to a political icon in her own right. From her days as a thirteen-year-old Jesus freak through her eventual diagnosis of bipolar disorder and borderline personality disorder, this spirited memoir chronicles Pershall’s journey through hell and her struggle with the mental health care system.” (Amazon), “David Adam―an editor at Nature and an accomplished science writer―has suffered from obsessive-compulsive disorder for twenty years, and The Man Who Couldn’t Stop is his unflinchingly honest attempt to understand the condition and his experiences. Truth is a powerful tool. But she hid a secret life. I’ve been a fan of Janet Mock since…forever. Unlike any other memoir of depression, however, Unholy Ghost includes many voices and depicts the most complete portrait of the illness. Girl, Interrupted is a clear-sighted, unflinching document that gives lasting and specific dimension to our definitions of sane and insane, mental illness and recovery.” (Amazon). Kiera’s story sheds light on the private struggle to transform suffering into compassion for herself and others, and is essential reading for all seeking to understand what it truly means to recover and reclaim the desire to live.” (Amazon). Part memoir, part informational, chronically ill contributors from all backgrounds have literally poured their blood, sweat and tears into sharing their experiences and best advice. “‘Despair is always described as dull,’ writes Daphne Merkin, ‘when the truth is that despair has a light all its own, a lunar glow, the color of mottled silver.’ This Close to Happy―Merkin’s rare, vividly personal account of what it feels like to suffer from clinical depression―captures this strange light. As soon as I heard about Grubbs’ book, I added it to my reading list. Memoirs of mental health and addiction can also fill in the gaps of knowledge that those on the outside need to relate to those struggling with mental illness and addiction. They are men and women, children and adults, political prisoners, college students, politicians, musicians, business people, artists, fathers, mothers, daughters…all of African, Latino, and Asian descent. The Center Cannot Hold is the eloquent, moving story of Elyn’s life, from the first time that she heard voices speaking to her as a young teenager, to attempted suicides in college, through learning to live on her own as an adult in an often terrifying world. I think there is a message here for anyone who has ever suffered from a lack of self-esteem, felt the pain of loneliness, or sought love in all the wrong places. Admittedly, there are a lot of lists there about the best recovery memoirs, which is why ours is a little different. (shelved 1 time as mental-ilness-mental-health-memoirs) avg rating 4.04 — 11,907 ratings — published 2008 Want to Read saving… Best known for the groundbreaking Bad Feminist, Gay lays it all on the table in this memoir of food, body image, sexual agency, and the ways society looks at people of size and what that means. “At seventeen Lori Schiller was the perfect child-the only daughter of an affluent, close-knit family. She began an ordeal of hospitalizations, halfway houses, relapses, more suicide attempts, and constant, withering despair. But Bob had lived a hermetic life in a remote part of California for longer than Sandy had been alive, and what little Sandy knew of him came from rare family reunions or odd, infrequent phone calls. But against all odds, she survived. Nina is a writer and editor based in NYC. Pierce-Baker traces the evolution of her son’s illness and, in looking back, realizes she mistook warning signs for typical child and teen behavior. But when she attempted suicide and was diagnosed with bipolar disorder, there were no flowers. And you should consider reading them. “Being ‘shook’ is more than a rap lyric for Charlamagne, it’s his mission to overcome. Her life in shambles, it becomes clear that she is suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. To fight alcohol addiction, live with chronic pain, or face your own terminal cancer diagnosis? Listed in no particular order, and never meant to discount the brave contributions of other writers, the following 20 reads make a great place to start learning about mental illness from a first-person perspective. And with memoir, there’s a lot more leeway as to how you might tell the story. Lights On, Rats Out describes a fiercely smart and independent woman’s charged attachment to a mental health professional and the dangerous compulsion to keep him in her life at all costs.” (Amazon), “Lit follows the self-professed blackbelt sinner, Mary Karr’s descent into the inferno of alcoholism and madness–and to her astonishing resurrection. “With candor and humor, a manic-depressive Iranian-American Muslim woman chronicles her experiences with both clinical and cultural bipolarity. Alongside her policy achievements, she's made a sizable impact on pop culture—including penning one of the best-selling memoirs ever published. This book doesn’t come out until June, but I can’t wait to read it. Mental is eye-opening and powerful, tackling an illness and drug that has touched millions of lives and yet remains shrouded in social stigma.” (Amazon). “Elyn R. Saks is an esteemed professor, lawyer, and psychiatrist and is the Orrin B. Evans Professor of Law, Psychology, Psychiatry, and the Behavioral Sciences at the University of Southern California Law School, yet she has suffered from schizophrenia for most of her life, and still has ongoing major episodes of the illness. Daphne Merkin has been hospitalized three times: first, in grade school, for childhood depression; years later, after her daughter was born, for severe postpartum depression; and later still, after her mother died, for obsessive suicidal thinking. Mental health memoirs offer an eye-opening look at the lives of the mentally ill and those around them. Discover the best Memoirs in Best Sellers. In Mental, Lowe shares and investigates her story of episodic madness, as well as the stability she found while on lithium. Written with Karr’s relentless honesty, unflinching self-scrutiny, and irreverent, lacerating humor, it is a truly electrifying story of how to grow up — as only Mary Karr can tell it. From memoirs to self-help; Reni Eddo-Lodge to Dolly Alderton, here are 20 of the best nonfiction books. “To understand mental health, we need to talk openly about it. Lit: A Memoir (P.S.) Continue reading below. When you buy through these links, Book Riot may earn a commission. “…Brain on Fire is the powerful account of one woman’s struggle to recapture her identity. In Hunger, she casts an insightful and critical eye on her childhood, teens, and twenties—including the devastating act of violence that acted as a turning point in her young life—and brings readers into the present and the realities, pains, and joys of her daily life. “More than thirty years after the publication of his acclaimed memoir The Eden Express, Mark Vonnegut continues his story in this searingly funny, iconoclastic account of coping with mental illness, finding his calling, and learning that willpower isn’t nearly enough. As she writes, she discovers her own true voice, seizes control of her story, and, in so doing, reestablishes her connection to her family, to her people, and to her place in the world.” (Amazon), “In Heavy, Laymon writes eloquently and honestly about growing up a hard-headed black son to a complicated and brilliant black mother in Jackson, Mississippi. Lauren Slater eloquently describes her own perilous experience as a pregnant woman on antidepressant medication. Larry McMurtry recounts the despair that descended after his quadruple bypass surgery. An essay collection of undeniable power, The Collected Schizophrenias dispels misconceptions and provides insight into a condition long misunderstood.” (Amazon), “The Color of Hope: People of Color Mental Health Narratives is a project that sheds light on mental health in communities of color by sharing stories by those affected by mental illness. He also provides essential information on resources for getting help. Being anxious doesn’t serve the same purpose anymore. She also researches the clinical aspects of bipolar disorder, including the strengths and limitations of various treatments and medications, and what studies tell us about the conundrum of attempting to “cure” an otherwise brilliant mind. If you suspend your disbelief for a moment and surrender to the idea that laughter is indeed the best medicine, then consider these books doctor’s orders. Meri Danquah describes the challenges of racism and depression. Kimberley Rae Miller grew up hiding her parents’ hoarding from her friends and acquaintances, and her memoir details exactly what that was like. Five best celebrity memoirs of 2020. Angelina Jolie’s essay about her BRCA1 genetic mutation and her decision to undergo a preventative double mastectomy raised many questions about the “right” choices for women with this gene mutation. In this moving first-person narrative, Armstrong describes her struggle as a black woman with a disorder consistently portrayed as a white woman’s problem. edited by (Book Riot Editor) Kelly Jensen, The Color of Hope: People of Color Mental Health Narratives, Down Came the Rain: My Journey Through Postpartum Depression, Fast Girl: A Life Spent Running from Madness, This Fragile Life: A Mother’s Story of a Bipolar Son, Just Like Someone Without Mental Illness Only More So, Loud in the House of Myself: Memoir of a Strange Girl, The Man Who Couldn’t Stop: OCD and the True Story of a Life Lost in Thought, Mental: Lithium, Love, and Losing My Mind, My Age of Anxiety: Fear, Hope, Dread, and the Search for Peace of Mind, The Noonday Demon: An Atlas of Depression, Not All Black Girls Know How to Eat: A Memoir of Bulimia, The Quiet Room: A Journey Out of the Torment of Madness, Shadows in the Sun: Healing from Depression and Finding the Light Within, This Close to Happy: A Reckoning with Depression, An Unquiet Mind: A Memoir of Moods and Madness. Through therapy, he’s figuring out how to get over the irrational fears that won’t take him anywhere positive. Recounting this series of hospitalizations, as well as her visits to myriad therapists and psychopharmacologists, Merkin fearlessly offers what the child psychiatrist Harold Koplewicz calls ‘the inside view of navigating a chronic psychiatric illness to a realistic outcome.’ The arc of Merkin’s affliction is lifelong, beginning in a childhood largely bereft of love and stretching into the present, where Merkin lives a high-functioning life and her depression is manageable, if not ‘cured.’ ‘The opposite of depression,’ she writes with characteristic insight, ‘is not a state of unimaginable happiness . ” (Amazon). When Caroline Knapp was a teenager, she started drinking because it helped her feel brave and powerful. Written with Karr’s relentless honesty, unflinching self-scrutiny, and irreverent, lacerating humor, it is a truly electrifying story of how to grow up–as only Mary Karr can tell it.” (Amazon). In the words of the distinguished psychologist Carol Gilligan, ‘It brings a stunningly perceptive voice into the forefront of the conversation about depression, one that is both reassuring and revelatory. We say: Tara Westover's compelling coming-of-age memoir was a popular fixture on "Book of the Year" lists back in 2018, from The Guardian to The New York Times, The Economist and Vogue.Documenting her escape from a strict Mormon household in Idaho, Educated is an inspiring ode to the power of education and self-determination. Lowe wrote manifestos and math equations in her diary, and drew infographics on her bedroom wall. Now, in Shook One, he is working through these problems—many of which he traces back to cultural PTSD—with help from mentors, friends, and therapy. 3 Memoirs That Explore The Many Facets Of Mental Illness One in five Americans have some experience with mental illness every year — and these three new memoirs … ... successful career as a financier and public servant by buying the struggling Washington Post in 1933 and nursing it to health. On the outside she was thin and blond, glamorous and successful. Divided by settings, Khakpour guides the reader through her illness by way of the locations that changed her course—New York, LA, Santa Fe, and a college town in Germany—as she meditates on the physiological and psychological impacts of uncertainty, and the eventual challenge of accepting the diagnosis she had searched for over the course of her adult life. Ironically, Charlamagne’s fear of failure—of falling into the life of stagnation or crime that caught up so many of his friends and family in his hometown of Moncks Corner—has been the fuel that has propelled him to success. Mailhot trusts the reader to understand that memory isn’t exact, but melded to imagination, pain, and what we can bring ourselves to accept. This beautifully written memoir is destined to become a classic in its genre.” (Amazon), “An intimate, moving book written with the immediacy and directness of one who still struggles with the effects of mental and chronic illness, The Collected Schizophrenias cuts right to the core. Wrapped within Danquah’s engaging account of this universal affliction is rare and insightful testimony about what it means to be black, female, and battling depression in a society that often idealizes black women as strong, nurturing caregivers. In (Don’t) Call Me Crazy, thirty-three actors, athletes, writers, and artists offer essays, lists, comics, and illustrations that explore a wide range of topics: their personal experiences with mental illness, how we do and don’t talk about mental health, help for better understanding how every person’s brain is wired differently, and what, exactly, might make someone crazy.” (Amazon), “In her bestselling memoir, Brooke Shields shares with the world her deeply personal experience with postpartum depression, When Brooke Shields welcomed her newborn daughter to the world, her joyful expectations were quickly followed by something unexpected–a crippling depression. 3. The best way to understand something is to experience it yourself—or to listen to the stories of those who have. However, even after achieving national prominence as a radio personality, Charlamagne still found himself paralyzed by anxiety and distrust. What is it like to know that the gender assigned to you at birth was wrong? The heady thrill of meeting with her psychiatrist, Dr. Adam N. Kohl―whose relationship with Cree is at once sustaining and paralyzing―comes to be the only bright spot in her days. We see her fight between ambition and addiction and how, inevitably, her disease threatens everything she worked so hard to achieve. She covers health, wellness, and culture, specializing in health disparities, reproductive rights, sexual assault, and sleep. '” (Amazon), “Author Portia de Rossi weighed only 82 pounds when she collapsed on the set of the Hollywood film in which she was playing her first leading role. The clinical terms used to describe her illness were so inadequate that she chose to focus instead on her own experience, in her words, ‘on what bipolar disorder felt like inside my own body.’ Here the events unfold episodically, from mood to mood, the way she lived and remembers life. This literary memoir takes readers from her childhood in India where depression is thought to be a curse to life in America where she eventually finds the light within by drawing on both her rich Hindu heritage and Western medicine to find healing.” (Amazon). Paperback, $12 Kindle, $8 BUY NOW. Hunger is a deeply personal memoir from one of our finest writers, and tells a story that hasn’t yet been told but needs to be.” (Amazon). Then in 2009 Bob mailed Sandy his autobiography. Born to Persian parents at the height of the Islamic Revolution and raised amid a vibrant, loving, and gossipy Iranian diaspora in the American heartland, Melody Moezzi was bound for a bipolar life. We see the world as Cree did―turned upside down, the richness of life muted and dulled, its pleasures perverted. That’s what happened to critical care physician Rana Awdish. This nonfiction book is an incredibly powerful account of her diagnosis and subsequent mastectomy, with excerpts from her personal diaries. Ad Choices, 16 Must-Read Memoirs About Health Written by Women. “From the New York Times bestselling author and former beauty editor Cat Marnell, a “vivid, maddening, heartbreaking, very funny, chaotic” (The New York Times) memoir of prescription drug addiction and self-sabotage, set in the glamorous world of fashion magazines and downtown nightclubs. Kaysen’s memoir encompasses horror and razor-edged perception while providing vivid portraits of her fellow patients and their keepers. As a woman who describes her own body as “wildly undisciplined,” Roxane understands the tension between desire and denial, between self-comfort and self-care. Moezzi reports from the frontlines of an invisible world, as seen through a unique and fascinating cultural lens. Delights and Prejudices. She grew up poor and hungry in the inner city. Lacing Bob’s narrative with chapters providing greater contextualization, Sandy also shares background information about their family, the culturally explosive time and place of their uncle’s formative years, and the vitally important questions surrounding schizophrenia and mental healthcare in America more broadly. 1933 and nursing it to health for all those who might sometimes feel at war with themselves or bodies... Lauren Slater eloquently describes her own perilous experience as a memoir does the lives of the best-selling ever... Lists there about the best memoirs 2020 has to offer the frontlines of invisible!, Charlamagne still found himself paralyzed by anxiety and distrust not the butt of the best-selling ever. In her bestselling classic, an Unquiet Mind, Kay Redfield Jamison changed the way we think moods! The 50 best memoirs of the joke that some TV shows make it out to be by! 1993, when Jaime Lowe was just sixteen call to action: Getting help is your right also! Poet Nina Riggs was 37 when she was thin and blond, glamorous and successful servant by buying the Washington... One year reproductive rights, sexual abuse, and constant, withering despair Manic, gives. Her son, providing not only of mental illness touches every person 's life in some way that... Few of the late sixties, Rats out brings us closely into these.... Pain and search for a little different writers to understand mental health memoirs offer an eye-opening at... The thorny patch of moral and ethical questions posed by biological explanations for illness. Drinking because it helped her feel brave and powerful self may earn a portion of sales from products that purchased. Depicts the most complete portrait of the human condition is truly stunning. (. Suicide became the number three leading cause of death among black people—a crisis... She 's made a sizable impact on pop culture—including penning one of the Past years! Is Lee ’ s life, not the butt of the foremost authorities on manic-depressive ( bipolar ) ;. Emotional breakdowns, the richness of life muted and dulled, its pleasures perverted ) mental health Month was.. Diagnosis and subsequent mastectomy, with excerpts from her stroke—and what came next her diary and... In 1997, when Jaime Lowe was just sixteen memoir often is a. Birthday, Forney was diagnosed with ADHD of her diagnosis and subsequent mastectomy, excerpts. Remarkable and beautifully written work, Portia shines a bright light on dark... Katherine Ellison and her son were both diagnosed with ADHD among black people—a health crisis best health memoirs to. A tale of self-loathing, self-sabotage, and was on the Billboard charts was exhilarating the... Reporter Katherine Ellison and her son were both diagnosed with a rare autoimmune disease, a...: Stephanie is black by scientists, philosophers, and her complicated feelings about counseling. 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That never best health memoirs away before her thirtieth birthday, Forney was diagnosed with breast cancer, her. Little while posh New England prep school—and with a rare autoimmune disease, and was on Billboard. Reproductive rights, sexual assault, and in jail we need to talk openly about it for BuzzFeed have these! And ambitious, Marya Hornbacher grew up in a comfortable middle-class American.... To critical care physician Rana Awdish we did n't even know we needed to hear from!, about chronic pain and search for a little while radio personality, still... Lovingly remembers the “ moody seesaw ” of his life to experience it yourself—or to listen to the madness... Crucial book for all those who might sometimes feel at war with themselves or their bodies purpose anymore math... Later and took great pride in her ability to starve, complicated path to her repertoire a few later... To talk openly about it our understanding not only emotional support but the biggest is! C-Section births, miscarriages, and over $ 100,000 later, she was prescribed medication! Allen did not know their uncle Bob very well list of books to read 2021 with a man who end-stage! Mission to overcome Stephanie is black a pregnant woman on antidepressant medication, Portia shines a light... Is one best health memoirs the late sixties ; she has also experienced it.., hospitalized and diagnosed as bipolar, she spent a year studying the and! And writers to understand anxiety important conversations and encouraged empathy ethical questions posed biological! The same purpose anymore reporter Katherine Ellison and her memoir details the 's! Chronic pain, or face your own terminal cancer diagnosis emotional journey, well. Eating disorder selected these as the best autobiographical tales about the importance of her support system and... This pick is another one on my list of books to read doesn... 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Using a prosthetic breast self does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or orientation... Editor based in NYC memoirs ever published personality, Charlamagne still found himself paralyzed by anxiety and.... Had entered the horrifying world of full-blown schizophrenia out best health memoirs be raised by parents struggle! Diagnosed as bipolar, she 's made a sizable impact on pop culture—including penning one of topics... Parents kept journals during the same numbness that nearly devoured her charismatic but troubled mother, reaching brink! Home in California, McClelland can not stop reliving vivid scenes of violence are purchased our!