Rambling about books

Book review: So Sad Today: Personal Essays, by Melissa Broder

Book cover from Goodreads

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Title: So Sad Today: Personal Essays

Author: Melissa Broder

Genre: Essay, Nonfiction

Goodreads link

What do I think?

There’s this Twitter account by the name of @sosadtoday that is run by Melissa Broder, the author of this book. She used to run the Twitter account anonymously in the beginning; unfortunately I did not know from when did people began to know that it was behind the self-deprecatingly honest tweets, but I was glad to have stumbled upon the Twitter account in one of my problematic period by far. Here’s a little bit background story. Back in May and June I went to a very difficult episode in my life; the signs were already brewing since the beginning of the year but amidst the work and the joys of cycling through my days in Bogota, it all went under the rug. To make the long story short, by early June I was finally diagnosed with early onset depression and was prescribed medication to help mediate the symptoms. During that period, I also stumbled upon the personal essays that Melissa published and I bought the book on a whim, and boy, was I glad I did.

After a huge disappointment from the previous book that I read before this (What If This Were Enough?) I was actually a bit hesitant about reading this book, especially when I realised that I only bought this book on a whim, I didn’t even did any research about it before (which is something I rarely do); I was not up for another disappointment from reading an infuriatingly boring and obnoxious book. But ’tis was not the case with this book. I relate so much with the essays and the author’s voice. This was the book I need. it was open, honest, and just openly angry without having to coat the anger with any pretense of trying to be wise. Sometimes you’re angry, sad, and frustrated, and you just want to let it out. Reading the author’s essays had helped me (somewhat) made some peace with my own frustratingly dark phase of my life, without feeling dismissed.

I love how the author wrote each and every essays without restraint; I felt like she is merely letting out her emotion through words. Even her cursing and brash words didn’t sound pretentious. Oh, however do I mean by that? Let me put it this way. You know how lately there has been several self help books that sounded cheeky what with putting curse words on their title, making the reader felt like, oh this is going to be a different kind of self help book; this one is going to be relatable because look, it has curse words on its title! Yeah, well, I read several of those books and suffice to say I was not happy, because I felt clickbait to read it when it is just your same old run of the mill self help books that seems like a know-it-all person who’s going to dismiss your problem. Now, this book is absolutely not like that. The author curse not to seems approachable whilst discussing topics such as mental health. So, yeah, I really did enjoy the book very very much.

I genuinely enjoy reading her journey with her mental illness in the way that it almost parallels where I am rn with my own mental health. Glad I read it when I most needed.

What’s it about?

Taken from Goodreads

Melissa Broder always struggled with anxiety. In the fall of 2012, she went through a harrowing cycle of panic attacks and dread that wouldn’t abate for months. So she began @sosadtoday, an anonymous Twitter feed that allowed her to express her darkest feelings, and which quickly gained a dedicated following. In So Sad Today, Broder delves deeper into the existential themes she explores on Twitter, grappling with sex, death, love, low self-esteem, addiction, and the drama of waiting for the universe to text you back. With insights as sharp as her humor, Broder explores—in prose that is both gutsy and beautiful, aggressively colloquial and achingly poetic—questions most of us are afraid to even acknowledge, let alone answer, in order to discover what it really means to be a person in this modern world.

It’s probably good that I keep pushing myself to leave the house and maintain my social masks of competence, engagement, and comfort. But what if I did tell people exactly what was going on? What if I valued my own peace of mind more than what other people think of me? Would I end up jobless, friendless, and loveless? Would I vanish entirely?

So Sad Today: Personal Essays by Melissa Broder

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