counter create hit Loud in the House of Myself: Memoir of a Strange Girl - Download Free eBook
Hot Best Seller

Loud in the House of Myself: Memoir of a Strange Girl

Availability: Ready to download

"An utterly unique journey down some of the mind's more mysterious byways . . . ranges from the shocking to the simply lovely." —Marya Hornbacher Stacy Pershall grew up depressed and too smart for her own good, a deeply strange girl in Prairie Grove, Arkansas (population 1,000), where the prevailing wisdom was that Jesus healed all. From her days as a thirteen-year-old "An utterly unique journey down some of the mind's more mysterious byways . . . ranges from the shocking to the simply lovely." —Marya Hornbacher Stacy Pershall grew up depressed and too smart for her own good, a deeply strange girl in Prairie Grove, Arkansas (population 1,000), where the prevailing wisdom was that Jesus healed all. From her days as a thirteen-year-old Jesus freak, through a battle with anorexia and bulimia, her first manic episode at eighteen, and the eventual diagnosis of bipolar disorder and borderline personality disorder, this spirited and at times mordantly funny memoir chronicles Pershall's journey through hell-several breakdowns and suicide attempts—and her struggle with the mental health care system. After her 2001 suicide attempt, broadcast live on a Webcam, Pershall realized the need to heal her mind and body. She found a revolutionary cure (Dialectical Behavioral Therapy) and a new mood-stabilizing medication. She also met a tattoo artist and discovered the healing power of body modification. By giving over her skin and enduring the physical pain, she learned about the true nature of trust.


Compare

"An utterly unique journey down some of the mind's more mysterious byways . . . ranges from the shocking to the simply lovely." —Marya Hornbacher Stacy Pershall grew up depressed and too smart for her own good, a deeply strange girl in Prairie Grove, Arkansas (population 1,000), where the prevailing wisdom was that Jesus healed all. From her days as a thirteen-year-old "An utterly unique journey down some of the mind's more mysterious byways . . . ranges from the shocking to the simply lovely." —Marya Hornbacher Stacy Pershall grew up depressed and too smart for her own good, a deeply strange girl in Prairie Grove, Arkansas (population 1,000), where the prevailing wisdom was that Jesus healed all. From her days as a thirteen-year-old Jesus freak, through a battle with anorexia and bulimia, her first manic episode at eighteen, and the eventual diagnosis of bipolar disorder and borderline personality disorder, this spirited and at times mordantly funny memoir chronicles Pershall's journey through hell-several breakdowns and suicide attempts—and her struggle with the mental health care system. After her 2001 suicide attempt, broadcast live on a Webcam, Pershall realized the need to heal her mind and body. She found a revolutionary cure (Dialectical Behavioral Therapy) and a new mood-stabilizing medication. She also met a tattoo artist and discovered the healing power of body modification. By giving over her skin and enduring the physical pain, she learned about the true nature of trust.

30 review for Loud in the House of Myself: Memoir of a Strange Girl

  1. 4 out of 5

    didaink

    Rarely do I land upon a book that changes me as a mother... but, then came Loud in the House of Myself aka LITHOM. As a mother of a girl who is already struggling with body image at age eight, who is also intensely emotional and creative, I found that it was initially excruciating to read the details of what this young girl experienced. Stacy as a child was just too familiar. I had to stop reading for a while because it was too painful to idly sit and watch this tormented young girl unravel under Rarely do I land upon a book that changes me as a mother... but, then came Loud in the House of Myself aka LITHOM. As a mother of a girl who is already struggling with body image at age eight, who is also intensely emotional and creative, I found that it was initially excruciating to read the details of what this young girl experienced. Stacy as a child was just too familiar. I had to stop reading for a while because it was too painful to idly sit and watch this tormented young girl unravel under the watch of her Arkansan family in a town the size of a Wal-Mart Supercenter. Besides, the way I stumbled upon Stacy Pershall and her memoir was fortuitous. I went to Barnes & Noble in Little Rock that afternoon to buy only David Sedaris’ latest book and walked out holding a copy of LITHOM with “Strange Girl Army!” inscribed in pink ink, the author’s infectious smile and mural of colorful tattoos indelibly part of my experience in the South. Here was my other problem but the reason I picked it back up: I loved the way Stacy wrote, her ability to paint the painful details of her childhood with such an honest, almost comical, stroke that I couldn’t stop caring about this little girl and how much she loved her mother and father. I fell in love with her one-of-a-kind quirks (the love for Hot Wheels instead of dolls, how she wanted to be Schroeder from Peanuts with a lit candle on her tiny toy piano, her love for Sugar Daddies, my all-time favorite candy from the 70s). She was smart and full of what I call “the sillies,” doing things her own unique way as a child, writing stories that showed her creativity, and in the beginning her mother accepted all of it… all of her eccentricities. She probably even celebrated them and laughed a little too loud about them like most every mother does who thinks her child is the cutest kid in the room. But, as I continued to read, I grew angry with her mother, her father too, for their negligence in accepting their beautiful, artistic, tormented daughter as she got older, for ignoring what they, no doubt, had observed all along, for never even going along for moral support when she got a tattoo that held meaning for her when she reached adulthood -- just to hold her hand, if nothing else, even if they didn’t agree with it. Then, it hit me. They had absolutely no tools by which to reach her. It was as if she had fallen into a well, calling out for her parents, but they didn’t have the right kind of flashlight to see her or the right rope ladder to pull her out, and she and they kept slipping off the rungs back into the dark. There were no books like LITHOM in their world, or for that matter, on any bookshelf in the South, let alone Prairie Grove, Arkansas. There was no Amazon, no Goodreads… and even the almighty Oprah, who Stacy’s mother might have turned to at the time on the topic of eating disorders, was of no help either, Oprah herself obsessed with diets and fitting into her “skinny” jeans as American women cheered her on. This book has changed me for the better, but I resisted it at first… because I was scared – scared to look too closely at things a mother doesn’t want to really see or confront. Had Stacy’s writing not been so rhythmic, so intelligent, so genuine, I would have stopped and gone back to reading David Sedaris for kicks after carpool, math homework and dirty dishes. I now encourage mothers to read this book to better understand our girls and boys, to understand mental illness and our healthcare system better. We, their parents, need to seek out memoirs like Stacy’s and educate ourselves about things that are too painful most days to contemplate. When it’s too painful and we want to look away, that’s how we know that we need to keep reading. This is how we learn what type of ladder or flashlight we should have in our parenting tool shed. We may slip and fall until we find the right one, but then we just make another trip back to Home Depot or the closest Wal-Mart Supercenter.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Chris Blocker

    Ten years ago I was diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder. Since then, I have often been in and out of therapy. I've tried various techniques to regulate my moods. What worked best for me, however, were words. Words are important to me, and by reading and learning about BPD, I was able to articulate my feelings. I've read many books on the subject, probably all of which were written by therapists. Some I stepped back in amazement from, asking how they knew so much about me. Others were c Ten years ago I was diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder. Since then, I have often been in and out of therapy. I've tried various techniques to regulate my moods. What worked best for me, however, were words. Words are important to me, and by reading and learning about BPD, I was able to articulate my feelings. I've read many books on the subject, probably all of which were written by therapists. Some I stepped back in amazement from, asking how they knew so much about me. Others were clearly speculating how a Borderline feels and reacts, and were way off. I was excited to read Loud in the House of Myself because here was a book actually written by a Borderline. And, not surprisingly, Stacy Pershall knows my story. Okay, so Pershall's life has been more extreme than mine. Compared to her, I'm a tame Borderline--my therapists always said I was "high functioning." But the base of her actions and feelings are nearly identical. If you want insight into what it means to have BPD, this is the book. On top of her BPD, Pershall struggled with eating disorders. Though I have many extremist behaviors that mirror the author's bulimia and anorexia, I have never had an eating disorder, per se. Though I'm not as versed in this field, Pershall's descriptions were vivid and made this side of her illness extremely real for me. When I first started this book, my one worry was that--given the marketing of the book and its target audience (largely, young girls it seems)--that Loud in the House of Myself would be juvenile and poorly written. Quickly, this fear receded. Pershall is intelligent and witty. She talks often about her love of literature and her reading list is impressive. Loud in the House of Myself is a frightening book. It's scary to get in the head of someone who is often irrational, someone who is seemingly normal one moment, belligerent the next, someone who swings from a belief that they are divine to a knowledge that they are worse than nothing. It's scary, but it's what it means to be Borderline. For whatever it is worth, I attest for Pershall's accuracy on the subject. Loud in the House of Myself is largely what it means to have been diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Mariah Roze

    I read this book for the goodreads book club Diversity in All Forms! If you would like to participate in our discussions here is the link: https://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/... I really enjoyed this book. As a special education teacher that deals with a large majority of students with mental health issues, this book was absolutely fascinating to me. I not only learned more about bulimia and anorexia, but also about borderline personality disorder and bipolar. The author did a great job at shari I read this book for the goodreads book club Diversity in All Forms! If you would like to participate in our discussions here is the link: https://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/... I really enjoyed this book. As a special education teacher that deals with a large majority of students with mental health issues, this book was absolutely fascinating to me. I not only learned more about bulimia and anorexia, but also about borderline personality disorder and bipolar. The author did a great job at sharing her story, and I love reading autobiographies. This book was well written and covered a large majority of her life. Even the epilogue was fascinating. I found it very interesting too that she loves tattoos, so she made that a big part of her book all the way through. She became obsessed with things and people and I found this part of the book really fascinating…. "There's nothing quite like being manic and sliding into obsession and then realizing the people you're obsessed with are obsessed with you too. It's a strange inverse psychosis, like seeing your reflection thrown back at you in a thousand mirrors, going on forever, and it wreaks havoc on successful splitting…" I suggest this book :)

  4. 5 out of 5

    Julia

    My favorite thing about Loud in the House of Myself was the title. When I first saw this book, I knew I would love it. A memoir on mental illness, by a “strange girl,” with such a good title? I was eager to get my hands on it. Unfortunately, I didn’t enjoy this book very much and honestly found it a bit annoying. Memoirists don’t have the luxury of manufacturing fascinating life events to make the real story more interesting; instead, the reader is drawn to the author rather than the storyline. My favorite thing about Loud in the House of Myself was the title. When I first saw this book, I knew I would love it. A memoir on mental illness, by a “strange girl,” with such a good title? I was eager to get my hands on it. Unfortunately, I didn’t enjoy this book very much and honestly found it a bit annoying. Memoirists don’t have the luxury of manufacturing fascinating life events to make the real story more interesting; instead, the reader is drawn to the author rather than the storyline. The problem here was that I didn’t feel a connection with Pershall (and I absolutely thought I would after reading the back cover!). The question is, why? Perhaps something about her personality rubbed me the wrong way and it has nothing to do with the book. However, I think that the problem stemmed from the way the book was written. My biggest issue was that Pershall seems strangely reluctant to let us enter her personal world. Sure, she tells us what she did, but her emotions and motivations are often omitted or only briefly touched on. Her visit to Spain stands out as an example of this. It reads like a hazily-remembered spring break account from a friend who was high for the entire trip. The story was interesting, but I didn’t feel I learned much about Pershall. Since the memoir lacks the more insightful personal interrogation that I look for in this genre, her bizarre behaviors can easily leave you thinking, “Wow, she’s totally nuts” rather than helping you develop more empathy or understanding. It’s almost like she’s deliberately sensationalizing, not humanizing, herself. Another issue I had with this book was that she brought up her diagnoses too often. I felt like this was yet another way to distance herself from the reader. She begins talking about BPD and its treatment very early in the book, before we have had the chance to establish a relationship with the author or understand the characteristics of BPD in the context of a person’s life. Her transcription of the DSM-IV criteria for BPD and the pronouncement that this describes her very well is possibly the most uninteresting way she could have chosen to present herself. (I also found it a bit troubling that she embraces diagnostic labels so much. BPD a very problematic diagnosis and Pershall does not discuss or critique it at all. While diagnoses can help individuals make sense of their experiences and behaviors, it seems contradictory that she refers to herself as a “strange girl” yet views so much of her life through the lens of mental illness.) Throughout the book, diagnoses come up in an unhelpful way. An unusual behavior will be followed by, “this is common in people with BPD,” which both throws the reader out of the story and sidesteps the more interesting topic of why she acted this way. I also felt that the writing and narrative were not as strong as they could be. Pershall often lingered over scenes and details that were not particularly informative or interesting (Roommate: “I think you might have BPD.” Perhall: “I don’t.” End scene), but skims over topics that I wanted to hear about. For example, she hints at a troubled childhood relationship with her parents when she states that Linehan’s “invalidating environment” applies to her life, but barely describes this relationship. Similarly, she was married to an apparently wonderful and supportive man for six years, but barely mentions him at all. I feel that discussing a long-term relationship would help destigmatize BPD, yet she spends more time discussing the guy she had an affair with than she does her husband. Was this element of her life not dramatic or interesting enough? As for the writing, I neither loved it nor hated it. Pershall described her childhood well; however, I found other sections to be alternately slow and a bit overdone. I disliked how she started each chapter with the story of one of her tattoos. I felt like this technique interrupted the narrative flow, but seemed to add little to the story. I think the memoir is like Pershall’s tattoos – both are attempts to present herself to the world, but in portraying her story, she obscures the emotions and experiences under the surface.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Liralen

    When I checked this out at the library, the librarian scanning my books perked up. "Oh, I read this one," she said. (This conversation, by the way, was odd in and of itself; the librarians all recognise me but rarely comment on my reading choices.) "Was it good?" I asked. She made a face. "It was...well, she's really kind of crazy," she said. That was, of course, precisely the reason that I was reading this book in the first place, but I didn't say that. In any case, the librarian was pretty much c When I checked this out at the library, the librarian scanning my books perked up. "Oh, I read this one," she said. (This conversation, by the way, was odd in and of itself; the librarians all recognise me but rarely comment on my reading choices.) "Was it good?" I asked. She made a face. "It was...well, she's really kind of crazy," she said. That was, of course, precisely the reason that I was reading this book in the first place, but I didn't say that. In any case, the librarian was pretty much correct -- the book is all about the author being really kind of crazy. It's hard to rate. In some ways I think the book is very well done, but in other ways I think that she is a bit too single-minded. It's kind of like -- "I was crazy, and then I was crazier, and then I was really crazy, and then they called me this kind of crazy but I was actually that kind of crazy, and then I solved my craziness by getting tattoos." I'm exaggerating, of course, but not by all that much. Actually, the tattoo part of things could have been really interesting had she gone into more depth. It sounds like, for her, it was a combination of socially sanctioned (kind of) self-injury and a desire to make memories and feelings permanent. For all the meaning she tries to attribute to her tattoos, though, it's not all that clear what they mean to her in the now, whether it's the process of being tattooed that matters or the tattoos themselves. I wanted to know more (which tends to be a good sign, as far as I'm concerned). There's a focus on mania, I think. I don't know a whole lot about most of the things with which she was diagnosed, but as far as I could tell she largely brushed over the less dramatic bits to focus on the, well, crazy bits. (Unhealthy on-off relationship? Plenty of page space. Guy she married? Not important.) It's easy to understand why, but at the same time I wonder whether that undermines part of the message.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Dustin Ebaugh

    Intelligent, witty, brilliant, heartbreaking, hilarious, hard-to-fathom and hitting home too. If you grew up in a small town in the 80's and were/are even the least bit weird or quirky...this is one GREAT read! It's another one I read slowly, because it's that good. Pershall is an excellent wordsmith and captivating with her story. She's bold enough to not only "come out" with mental illness but do a great deal to help the reader understand it and remove the stigma associated with it. This book Intelligent, witty, brilliant, heartbreaking, hilarious, hard-to-fathom and hitting home too. If you grew up in a small town in the 80's and were/are even the least bit weird or quirky...this is one GREAT read! It's another one I read slowly, because it's that good. Pershall is an excellent wordsmith and captivating with her story. She's bold enough to not only "come out" with mental illness but do a great deal to help the reader understand it and remove the stigma associated with it. This book is great from start to finish. There's despair, chaos, hope and healing. Quite a recipe for a great book and this one is.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Lisa

    Very unsatisfying. This book has many flaws and they make it hard to read and relate. I wish she could have reflected on the cause and effect factor, because she only lists what happened as facts and not really describe how she felt about the situation or how it may have changed her. She describes DBT as what saved her, but she never went into detail regarding the emotional process she went through. I think she took advantage of being crazy and used it as a crutcher life. I wanted to like her, b Very unsatisfying. This book has many flaws and they make it hard to read and relate. I wish she could have reflected on the cause and effect factor, because she only lists what happened as facts and not really describe how she felt about the situation or how it may have changed her. She describes DBT as what saved her, but she never went into detail regarding the emotional process she went through. I think she took advantage of being crazy and used it as a crutcher life. I wanted to like her, but too many things

  8. 5 out of 5

    Kate

    Thank you Stacy for writing such a poetic, wonderful, hearbreakingly truthful memoir about mental illness. It's something that doesn't get talked about enough. Thank you Stacy for writing such a poetic, wonderful, hearbreakingly truthful memoir about mental illness. It's something that doesn't get talked about enough.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Eve Vulgaris

    I don't need to write my autobiography. I just read it. Sure, there are some differences from my own story, but it hits so close as to be chilling. I, like the author, found my way via tattoos and DBT. I'm not sure how someone without at least one the diagnoses would see the book as what makes the book good are the moments I found myself reading exactly what I would do, how I would react, seeing myself outside myself. This isn't intentionally vague, it's just one of those books you either "get" I don't need to write my autobiography. I just read it. Sure, there are some differences from my own story, but it hits so close as to be chilling. I, like the author, found my way via tattoos and DBT. I'm not sure how someone without at least one the diagnoses would see the book as what makes the book good are the moments I found myself reading exactly what I would do, how I would react, seeing myself outside myself. This isn't intentionally vague, it's just one of those books you either "get" or "don't get." All the reviewers complaining that the emotional content is lacking really don't understand that you can't describe the emotions when they are changing like a toddler at a light switch plate with six different lamps. And the "cure" of DBT - well, you learn basic life skills that most people learn as a child - how to control your reactions to your emotions - and the reader would just be incredulous and not believe that the writer could not do that, nay, were unaware it was possible to do that.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Amelia Scarponi

    I have no words to describe how much I loved and related to this memoir.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Rachel

    Excerpt: “It is embarrassing to admit that I didn’t begin [healing] until the age of thirty-four, when after a breakdown I began to get my life together through medication, therapy, and tattooing. Borderline means you’re one of those girls who walk around wearing long sleeves in the summer because you’ve carved up your forearms over your boyfriend. You make pathetic suicidal gestures and write bad poetry about them, listen to Ani DiFranco albums on endless repeat, end up in the emergency room for Excerpt: “It is embarrassing to admit that I didn’t begin [healing] until the age of thirty-four, when after a breakdown I began to get my life together through medication, therapy, and tattooing. Borderline means you’re one of those girls who walk around wearing long sleeves in the summer because you’ve carved up your forearms over your boyfriend. You make pathetic suicidal gestures and write bad poetry about them, listen to Ani DiFranco albums on endless repeat, end up in the emergency room for overdoses, scare off boyfriends by insisting they tell you they love you five hundred times a day and hacking into their email to make sure they’re not lying, have a police record for shoplifting, and your tooth enamel is eroded from purging. You’ve had five addresses and eight jobs in three years, your friends are avoiding your phone calls, you’re questioning your sexuality, and the credit card companies are after you. It took a lot of years to admit that I was exactly that girl, and that the diagnostic criteria for the disorder were essentially an outline of my life: [Borderline Personality Disorder is characterized by] a pervasive pattern of instability of interpersonal relationships, self-image, and affect, and marked impulsivity beginning by early adulthood and present in a variety of contexts, as indicated by five (or more) of the following: 1. Frantic efforts to avoid real or imagined abandonment. Note: Do not include suicidal or self-mutilating behavior covered in criterion 5. 2. A pattern of unstable and intense interpersonal relationships characterized by alternating between extremes of idealization and devaluation 3. Identity disturbance: markedly and persistently unstable self-image or sense of self 4. Impulsivity in at least two areas that are potentially self-damaging (e.g., spending, sex, substance abuse, reckless driving, binge eating). Note: Do not include suicidal or self-mutilating behavior covered in criterion 5. 5. Recurrent suicidal behavior, gestures, or threats, or self-mutilating behavior 6. Affective instability due to a marked reactivity of mood (e.g., intense episodic dysphoria, irritability, or anxiety lasting a few hours and only rarely more than a few days) 7. Chronic feelings of emptiness 8. Inappropriate, intense anger or difficulty controlling anger (e.g., frequent displays of temper, constant anger, recurrent physical fights) 9. Transient, stress-related paranoid ideation or severe dissociative symptoms. The first time I read these criteria, I felt like someone had been following me around taking notes.”(Loud in the House of Myself, pg. 8-10) Even reading it for the second time, this memoir still hits very close to home for me. Having also grown up dealing with borderline personality disorder and having battled through manic episodes and deep depressive states, as well as my own forms of self-destruction, reading Pershall’s story felt almost like connecting with a kindred spirit. After just the first twenty pages of her book, I was laughing and sobbing simultaneously— unsure of exactly how to feel aside from an overwhelming sense of rapport, and the relief that comes from knowing that someone, somewhere, has been where you are, felt how you feel— and has survived it. I found solace in her story; although it's different in many ways from my own, there were times while reading where I felt that if I were to walk up to her and tell her a story from my life, she would know exactly what I was talking about. Her memoir is deeply affecting; you don't need to have lived through something similar to recognize her courage and applaud the strength inherent in her words.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Pam

    There's a particular quote that I like while reading this book. Its on page 90. "Never forget the place you left, and when you return, tell stories of other lands." There's a particular quote that I like while reading this book. Its on page 90. "Never forget the place you left, and when you return, tell stories of other lands."

  13. 5 out of 5

    Cari

    Loud in the House of Myself didn't click with me, didn't ring quite true. There's a focus on shock value here; the book is basically a laundry list of the most awful scenes from her life. Normally I wouldn't fault Pershall for that, considering the genre and the mental health issues involved, but she uses the book like a spotlight on her very worst moments, illuminating them in a way that seems like she's perversely proud of them, and uses only a couple pages at the end to skim over the recovery Loud in the House of Myself didn't click with me, didn't ring quite true. There's a focus on shock value here; the book is basically a laundry list of the most awful scenes from her life. Normally I wouldn't fault Pershall for that, considering the genre and the mental health issues involved, but she uses the book like a spotlight on her very worst moments, illuminating them in a way that seems like she's perversely proud of them, and uses only a couple pages at the end to skim over the recovery process. And by "process" I mean she gives a basic outline of drug and DBT therapy but little on her experience going through it, aside from complaining about side effects. She states she's only been recovering for the last couple years, which makes me think she's not recovered much at all. She's stabilized, and there's a difference. (It's the same vibe I got from Hornbacher's Wasted, and the crash and burn her life took after that proved she wasn't recovered nearly enough at that time to be writing a book based on her experiences.) In short, I think the focus of the book was skewed toward shock value and that the author may not be recovered to the point of being ready to write this. I wish Pershall had waited a few more years before sitting down at the computer. She's a good writer, and I think Loud in the House of Myself would've strongly benefited from additional brewing time. Pershall wasn't ready, so the book wasn't ready.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Christina

    Loud in the House of Myself is an honest, riveting account of one young woman's spiral down into anorexia bulimia, with the later diagnosis of borderline personality disorder. Stacy Pershall details in an unsentimental, harrowing fashion how absolutely logical it was for her to engage in eating and purging rituals depending on the hour of the day and whether she could fit into a certain pair of forest green pants. Her salvation came with DBT or dialectical behavior therapy and body modification v Loud in the House of Myself is an honest, riveting account of one young woman's spiral down into anorexia bulimia, with the later diagnosis of borderline personality disorder. Stacy Pershall details in an unsentimental, harrowing fashion how absolutely logical it was for her to engage in eating and purging rituals depending on the hour of the day and whether she could fit into a certain pair of forest green pants. Her salvation came with DBT or dialectical behavior therapy and body modification via tattoos. The author photo belies that she ever lived in Prairie Grove, population 1,000 where she was subject to life as a fish out of water in the khaki-and-polo shirt teenage community. Stacy Pershall is now a belly dancer and artist living in New York City. I couldn't viscerally relate to her own brand of not fitting in as she labels herself a strange girl. Yet it was a good book to read to see another woman's perspective on what's normal, what's not. It might not be the kind of read a conservative person would champion. Yet it deserves a review. I checked it out of the library as I do for most of the books I read.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Allison

    Excellent and fully believable for the first half. Pershall embodies all of her neuroses perfectly in her prose, and I say this from someone who, in some ways, has "been there." The problem is that by the time the reader gets 2/3 of the way through the book, he or she is looking for some kind of progress. There needs to be a reason for writing this book, some kind of path to redemption or at least a wiser understand of self and the world. Instead, Pershall keeps up the book's frenetic pace at th Excellent and fully believable for the first half. Pershall embodies all of her neuroses perfectly in her prose, and I say this from someone who, in some ways, has "been there." The problem is that by the time the reader gets 2/3 of the way through the book, he or she is looking for some kind of progress. There needs to be a reason for writing this book, some kind of path to redemption or at least a wiser understand of self and the world. Instead, Pershall keeps up the book's frenetic pace at the rate her mind is speeding, which ultimately is a shame, because it makes the endeavor exhausting and, I regret to say it, but ultimately boring. By the end of the book, her craziness is almost predictable. We want to live inside her head, but only as far as a narrative will take us. There has to be an actual narrative, too.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Tammy

    Ms. Pershall refers first to her anorexia and bulimia and later to the other manifestations of her mental illness as "the bad dog". There is a bad dog nipping at the heels of someone I love, and this book provided me with invaluable insight and perception. Thank you, Stacy Pershall. In this book Ms. Pershall describes in beautiful and heart-wrenching detail her struggles with various mental illnesses and how she learned to live with them. She is not cured - but she found a way to be a (mostly) hap Ms. Pershall refers first to her anorexia and bulimia and later to the other manifestations of her mental illness as "the bad dog". There is a bad dog nipping at the heels of someone I love, and this book provided me with invaluable insight and perception. Thank you, Stacy Pershall. In this book Ms. Pershall describes in beautiful and heart-wrenching detail her struggles with various mental illnesses and how she learned to live with them. She is not cured - but she found a way to be a (mostly) happy and productive and contributing member of society. I wish her continued good health and huge love. I hope that her raw honesty is a step in the direction of eliminating at least some of the stigma generally still attached to mental illness by a society that should know better.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Kate

    I throughly enjoyed Stacey Pershall's Loud in the House of Myself: Memoir of a Strange Girl, a darkly humorous and deeply honest account of the author's struggles with eating disorders and mental illness. Pershall recounts how she fought her way out of an oppressive small town environment and found that this in itself didn't fix her, and the downward spiral that happened in the aftermath of this realization. Her self-deprecation and excellent turn of phrase help to make her memoirs relatable to I throughly enjoyed Stacey Pershall's Loud in the House of Myself: Memoir of a Strange Girl, a darkly humorous and deeply honest account of the author's struggles with eating disorders and mental illness. Pershall recounts how she fought her way out of an oppressive small town environment and found that this in itself didn't fix her, and the downward spiral that happened in the aftermath of this realization. Her self-deprecation and excellent turn of phrase help to make her memoirs relatable to anyone who felt marginalized growing up because they were different and struggled to find themselves in their adult life. Highly recommended! (I received this book for free through Goodreads First Reads.)

  18. 4 out of 5

    Lori Anderson

    This is a book that resonated with me on a visceral level. As a sufferer of depression and a past anorexic, reading Stacy Pershall's story was like reading bits of my own. Her fight and her issues were so much worse than mine, yet she came out of it with humor and dignity -- and at several points in her life, dignity wasn't even showing its face. I underlined and marked up this book on so many pages. I don't know how well someone will like it if they don't understand bipolar, depression, or suici This is a book that resonated with me on a visceral level. As a sufferer of depression and a past anorexic, reading Stacy Pershall's story was like reading bits of my own. Her fight and her issues were so much worse than mine, yet she came out of it with humor and dignity -- and at several points in her life, dignity wasn't even showing its face. I underlined and marked up this book on so many pages. I don't know how well someone will like it if they don't understand bipolar, depression, or suicide attempts, but if you are looking for a voice that rises from rock bottom, this is it. Lori Anderson Blog Shop Book Blog Page

  19. 5 out of 5

    Amy

    This is an inspiring, wrenching and deeply funny memoir of a "strange girl" (in her own words). Stacy Pershall recounts her struggle with mental illness and eating disorders, and explains how tattooing and Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) helped her triumph. A must-read for any girl who's ever felt like she didn't fit in or didn't measure up. This is an inspiring, wrenching and deeply funny memoir of a "strange girl" (in her own words). Stacy Pershall recounts her struggle with mental illness and eating disorders, and explains how tattooing and Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) helped her triumph. A must-read for any girl who's ever felt like she didn't fit in or didn't measure up.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Nilchance

    Pershall has valuable insights on mental illness, but there was enough casual racism (her description of a roommate, appropriative tattoos, people in lock-up being mean to her because she's white) to spoil it for me. Pershall has valuable insights on mental illness, but there was enough casual racism (her description of a roommate, appropriative tattoos, people in lock-up being mean to her because she's white) to spoil it for me.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Ren

    Fantastic and unflinching. Pershall captures what it's like to live with a brain that betrays you at every turn. Here's how I know she's healing: she's found the gray in between black and white thinking. Loved it. Fantastic and unflinching. Pershall captures what it's like to live with a brain that betrays you at every turn. Here's how I know she's healing: she's found the gray in between black and white thinking. Loved it.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Cassie

    One of my favorites. I've met Stacy a few times and she is the most wonderful, positive, unique person. This memoir is interesting, captivating, and a great look inside one example of mental illness. One of my favorites. I've met Stacy a few times and she is the most wonderful, positive, unique person. This memoir is interesting, captivating, and a great look inside one example of mental illness.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Heather

    This book is such an honest reflection of a creative mind dealing with mental illness. You wonder how she will survive, but you are rooting for her the whole time.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Sherry Tatar

    I read this book because my teen daughter tells me this book is the most apt description of how she feels that she has ever read. This is scary and while we have reached out for all kinds of help, I think we haven't landed on quite what we need yet. Even with insurance finding and keeping a therapist and psychiatrist is daunting and the delays to get appointments are abysmal. We have struggled both with dealing with school and with getting the necessary mental health care. The book gives me some I read this book because my teen daughter tells me this book is the most apt description of how she feels that she has ever read. This is scary and while we have reached out for all kinds of help, I think we haven't landed on quite what we need yet. Even with insurance finding and keeping a therapist and psychiatrist is daunting and the delays to get appointments are abysmal. We have struggled both with dealing with school and with getting the necessary mental health care. The book gives me some additional understanding and I'm passing it another daughter to read next.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Olivia Stirton

    I found this book, despite covering difficult subjects, really easy to read and informative. I was enjoying it, and then I came to realize how much I truly related to Stacy, and I felt a little less alone in my mental health journey while I progressed through the book. I appreciated Stacy’s openness about her diagnoses and her life story. Her willingness to share everything from her darkest days to her motivation to move forward brought me hope, and I enjoyed her lighthearted writing style that w I found this book, despite covering difficult subjects, really easy to read and informative. I was enjoying it, and then I came to realize how much I truly related to Stacy, and I felt a little less alone in my mental health journey while I progressed through the book. I appreciated Stacy’s openness about her diagnoses and her life story. Her willingness to share everything from her darkest days to her motivation to move forward brought me hope, and I enjoyed her lighthearted writing style that wasn’t constantly “woe is me”, but more informative and unashamed of her mental illness. BPD is so commonly misunderstood and stigmatized, and I’m thankful for Stacy reminding me that there is so much more to me than just that.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Tricia Donley

    Wow! Stacy Pershall was open and honest about how mental health impacted her teenage years and her adulthood. I would highly recommend - I especially think it is a powerful read for teachers. It opened my eyes a lot.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Kari Barbozi

    It took me some time to read this book because it hit so close to home. Sometimes it was like reading my own thoughts. But I read it at a good time, it gave me hope and energy. It made me feel understood, accompanied, seen. Thanks, Stacy, for putting yourself out there to show us, borderliners, that there's hope and that we are not alone. It took me some time to read this book because it hit so close to home. Sometimes it was like reading my own thoughts. But I read it at a good time, it gave me hope and energy. It made me feel understood, accompanied, seen. Thanks, Stacy, for putting yourself out there to show us, borderliners, that there's hope and that we are not alone.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Amber Johnson

    Stacy grew up in small-town Arkansas, born the first child of a truck driver father and a stay-at-home mother seemingly obsessed with her youngest son. Being more on the artistic side than the athletic, Stacy was deemed an outcast among her peers early on in their school careers, most likely contributing to the onset of a very long battle with anorexia and bulimia. Misdiagnosed and mistreated most of her life, Stacy struggled with bipolar tendencies, as well as borderline personality disorder. T Stacy grew up in small-town Arkansas, born the first child of a truck driver father and a stay-at-home mother seemingly obsessed with her youngest son. Being more on the artistic side than the athletic, Stacy was deemed an outcast among her peers early on in their school careers, most likely contributing to the onset of a very long battle with anorexia and bulimia. Misdiagnosed and mistreated most of her life, Stacy struggled with bipolar tendencies, as well as borderline personality disorder. This "memoir of a strange girl" captures just what it was like to walk in her shoes, as well as what she did to cope and eventually find victory over her inner self. From the beginning of the book, Stacy is honest about the people in her life, how they treated her, how their words and actions affected her, and how her words and actions affected them. From her parents to classmates to most of her therapists and psychiatrists, there are many people who had a negative impact on her. It seems as if she had many people that she could turn the blame on, passing on any responsibility for her disorders and illnesses, but she never does. She recognizes and acknowledges exactly what went on in her head and the decisions she made in accordance with that. This was my biggest fear going into this book, and I was thrilled to see that the author handled this aspect in a very mature manner. There is no doubt that the author can express herself. Individual scenes written from her life bring us straight into her head. When she was in a state of mania, we as the reader fly high with her. When she was depressed and medicated, we seemingly find ourselves drained and without hope. She is raw and honest with her words, exposing herself for the purpose of a greater understanding of mental illness and coping with it. Included throughout the scenes and in depth in the epilogue are explanations of the illnesses and disorders that she was eventually diagnosed with. Much to my disappointment, these explanations did not flow well with the scenes at all. In my opinion, this information should definitely be included in the memoir, but made the writing seem choppy in the way that it was presented. One of my favorite aspects of her life is how she learned to cope through body art, namely tattoos. Now in her early 40's, she has the majority of her body covered in tattoos documenting her experiences, the people she encountered along the way, and the roller coaster of emotions she has endured through. At the beginning of each chapter, there is a short blurb describing tattoos that she has, in a seeming effort to correlate that with the part of her life that follows in the chapter. Some of the blurbs are a bit odd and don't seem to flow with the chapter, but maybe that is just me not making the connections. In the end, I found these blurbs to be helpful in understanding the author and wish that there would be more explanation of how tattoos have brought her peace and stability. Stacy Pershall's life and struggles need to be shared. It is memoirs such as this one that will bring greater understanding to those with mental illnesses and those without.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Laura

    This was a very interesting read. I have personally never had experience with an eating disorder or mental illness, so it was interesting to read the perspective of a person that has dealt with both. Pershall does not leave any details out, or so I would assume. She does not in any way shape or form sugarcoat her experiences which I appreciate because it makes it easier to try and imagine what is going on in her head during her manic episodes. I also like that although there are various dark mom This was a very interesting read. I have personally never had experience with an eating disorder or mental illness, so it was interesting to read the perspective of a person that has dealt with both. Pershall does not leave any details out, or so I would assume. She does not in any way shape or form sugarcoat her experiences which I appreciate because it makes it easier to try and imagine what is going on in her head during her manic episodes. I also like that although there are various dark moments in the novel, such as her suicide attempts, Pershall somehow manages to lift the heavy mood with her sense of humor.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Lisa

    So much has already been said about this book. I liked reading it, although certain behavior really freaked me out, like the dog-bowl on the floor of the closet. I'm not gonna lie: I thought: 'Wow-she's CRAZY-crazy!'. The one thing that no one touched on (or maybe they did-I couldn't possibly read all of the reviews) is that there were times when her actions were so maddening and exhausting that it made me consider this: If someone close to you is mentally ill, how much are you supposed to endur So much has already been said about this book. I liked reading it, although certain behavior really freaked me out, like the dog-bowl on the floor of the closet. I'm not gonna lie: I thought: 'Wow-she's CRAZY-crazy!'. The one thing that no one touched on (or maybe they did-I couldn't possibly read all of the reviews) is that there were times when her actions were so maddening and exhausting that it made me consider this: If someone close to you is mentally ill, how much are you supposed to endure while trying to support them? Does it depend on your relationship to them? I totally 'get' that the mentally-ill person is struggling, but their actions can often interfere with a friend or relatives life, and hinder them as well. What is a good 'Obligation' rule-of-thumb? I was also not completely on board with the excessive tattooing. I have nothing against tattoos (and more friends of mine have them than not) but for someone trying to fit in, they can represent another layer of misunderstanding. (Maybe she truly doesn't care what other people think, but the book itself does not attest to that) To be clear: I am referring to a myriad of tats, not just three or four. However, I am glad they bring her satisfaction, and that satisfaction may be more than worth some uncomfortable stares. I'll also randomly mention that this book made me want to visit Cincinnati. Isn't that weird? But her description of the city sounded right up my alley! Finally: I was shocked to find out that she was semi-famous for the 24/7 streaming video of her life and public suicide attempt. In a million years I could not wrap my head around ever, ever wanting to be filmed like that! Cameras in the bathroom? Phew! That's a level of acceptance that is beyond desperate and needy, in my opinion. I can't even fathom the narcissistic implications of that. I remember being really aggravated with the author when she was complaining about all of the attention it got her, and how she was sneering at the the news people for trying to get comments on the story. It was very 'watch what you wish for!'and I kept thinking: 'This is exactly what you were going for!!' All in all, a good read about a person struggling with mental health issues.

Add a review

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Loading...
We use cookies to give you the best online experience. By using our website you agree to our use of cookies in accordance with our cookie policy.