Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Benilde Little

Benilde Little is the author of the memoir Welcome to My Breakdown. She also wrote four best-selling novels: Good Hair, The Itch, Acting Out, Who Does She Think She Is?

From the author's Q & with Caroline Leavitt:

What I loved about this book was how brave you were about writing about depression. So many people dismiss clinical depression as just the blues, but it isn’t--it’s many, many dark nights of the soul and it’s difficult to find your way out. But the book is also about grief--the death of your mother--and how that jump started depression, which began to change your worldview. Can you talk about all of this, please?

I still miss her, although it’s no longer a daily or even weekly thing and the pain does not cut into my marrow anymore. My worldview got a little more cynical because I’m conscious of feeling so much more alone. I’m no longer that idealist who believed nothing really bad ever happens. She was the person who understood me best and loved me the deepest so the absence of that is a tough thing to accept, but I have. I became the matriarch of my family and I don’t want to be, so I’m probably more resentful than I was. I’m waiting to get the feeling of freedom some people experience after they loose a parent, where you no longer give a crap, but that hasn’t happened to me. My husband says he felt that after losing his dad.

When it’s gone, it’s gone and there are no rituals to duplicate what my mother was to me. I have to live with that and sometimes it just makes me mad. I’ve never liked...[read on]
--Marshal Zeringue