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Saturday

23

January 2021

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COMMENTS

Break the Glass by Rachel Edwards

Written by , Posted in Reviews

Five Stars

Best for:
Anyone needing a reminder that it is okay to ask for help.

In a nutshell:
Author Edwards shares her experiences with mental health needs in straightforward but lovely writing.

Worth quoting:
“If you talk and share your thoughts and feelings, you are less, not more, likely to crumble.”

Why I chose it:
This was published specifically for this month’s “Books That Matter” subscription box.

Review:
This essay is so needed in this moment. Author Edwards starts sharing what she recalls as her first experience with mental health concerns – what she describes as her father’s nervous breakdown. She then shares that during her last year at university, she had a rough go for a bit, though she didn’t seek professional assistance from the university at the time, instead relying on close friends for support. The essay ends with a call to seek support when needed, and the benefits of allowing one’s self to be vulnerable and honest with close friends and family.

While I know it wasn’t the main purpose, given the author’s story I couldn’t help read this without thinking specifically about other university students this year. I work at one in London, and I know that students across the UK are having an especially a rough year. They haven’t had the in-person courses they and administrators thought might be possible earlier in the fall. Regional lock downs saw some students stuck inside tiny residence hall rooms for weeks at a time, with no real support system if they were new this fall. Everyone is having a hard time right now, and in unique ways. Parents are working and doing home school; essential workers are managing the stress of commutes and exposures; those who live alone are dealing with isolation.

I’m going to hold onto this essay, and re-read it. I don’t generally have problems opening up when I’m having a hard time, but who knows, that might change. But also, people around me may be having a hard time, and I want to make sure they know I am someone they can be open with, and who can offer them support.

Keep it / Pass to a Friend / Donate it / Toss it:
Keep it.

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