Some memoirs are fascinating accounts of deep introspection, providing great insight into an author’s life and mindset. Others are simply an example of one of the most self-serving forms of art. I have never experienced the latter; every memoir I’ve ever has been an engrossing, intimate look into the author’s emotional life and intellectual processes. Unfortunately, Kevin Breel’s Boy Meets Depression: Or Life Sucks and Then You Die Live, finally fulfilled that unfortunate stereotype that memoirs, when not carefully handled, make for dreadful reading.
I wanted to like this book. I am passionate about its subject matter and think that, when done well, firsthand accounts of depression and suicidal thoughts can be life changing. They grant insight to readers who might never have felt that way, and understanding breeds empathy, allowing those readers to connect with and support people in their lives who may struggle with depression themselves. Likewise, talking about those issues lessens the sense of isolation for those experiencing it themselves, and that in itself is powerful. Continue reading →