By Hattie Gladwell
The good, the bad, the uncontrollable and the ugly. The realities of mental illness - and everything that comes with it.
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Girl, Unwired is a real and raw look into living with mental illness.
It documents Hattie's life struggling with her mental health and trying to find answers for the chaos that was going on inside her mind. Over the years, she was diagnosed over and over again, each time with a new condition: bipolar disorder, OCD, borderline personality disorder and health anxiety, which was triggered by a traumatic hospital experience.
This book pieces together where it all started: from when she was just nine years old having her first intrusive thought, to being twenty-two, sitting in a bathtub wanting to die. It talks about anxiety. Depression. Mania. Obsessions. Compulsions. Suicidal tendencies, and everything that comes with Hattie's diagnoses. It also touches on other things such as suicidal thoughts, body dysmorphia, social media addiction, bulimia, self-harm, intrusive thoughts and what to do when Google tells you you're dying (which is never really true, FYI).
This book is a relatable read for anyone going through mental illness, whether that be one condition or multiple (which is very common). It's not a book that pretends that a magic pill is going to take it all away or a two-week countdown to being cured. It's not about finding a cure. It's about recovery and because that's what mental illness is: a constant state of recovery. And this book is about how we do it.
It includes the things that worked for Hattie, and the things that didn't. Her experience with therapists and CBT and tips she's learned from having it.
It also features self-care lists, breakdowns of how to handle your mental health, what to do when the world feels like it's suffocating you, how to seek help and make sure you get it, how to be taken seriously by your GP and going to A&E for your mental health. It's about what to do when you're sad. What to do when you feel like your mind is racing a mile a minute, filled with intrusive thoughts. What to do when your body is a bag of explosive emotions or when you can't feel anything at all.
What to do when you wake up in the morning and wish you hadn't.
Girl, Unwired is about unwiring the mind. Piecing together each illness like a puzzle, trying to find the root to where it all began. And as you read this book, hopefully you can do the same, too.