In mid-September 2001, recent college graduate and writer, Nicole Skuba, found herself strapped to a hospital bed after a deliberate overdose of Prozac. The previous five years of therapy and antidepressants did nothing to ease the bipolar disorder, clinical depression, or other diagnoses du jour.
Another Kind of Free: Suicide Prevention in the Wake of Robin Williams’ Death is part suicide prevention self-help guide, part darkly humorous memoir. After Nicole’s release in five days from the mental ward, she was determined to come up with her own route to happiness.
This memoir shares the excessive drinking, casual sex, manic joy, counseling, yoga, and goal-setting that ultimately led to healing and the beginning of a life worth living. It also illustrates the power that mindfulness-based stress reduction—even when done accidentally—can have in reducing depression and finding balance.
After thirteen years, Nicole is finally sharing her holistic methods of overcoming depression and addiction long-term with the hope of preventing at least one person from taking his or her life. This is especially important in the wake of Robin Williams’ death. The charismatic actor gave us laughter, inspiration, and the ability to embrace the absurd. With his suicide, he also left an unintended legacy: permission to end anguish with the same permanent decision he made.
Another Kind of Free: Suicide Prevention in the Wake of Robin Williams’ Death is a quick read aiming to reduce the stigma attached to mental illness and to provide an alternate, doable method of becoming “free” from mental illness. Sufferers and their family members will find Nicole’s memoir to be an entertaining chronicle of valuable, attainable information.