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It's sad and boring to be sick in the head, and until Prozac Nation was published, it wasn't even faintly hip. Depression, anxiety disorder, dysthymia or whatever one chooses to call whatever the amorphous thing, or things, that so many of us seem to wrestle with, is unglamorous crap.

In 1998, Helen Razer, JJJ icon and self-confessed fruit-bat, was forced to reassess her high-profile life when she found herself temporarily blind and suffering incapacitating dizzy spells, hyper-vigilance, headaches and a whole gamut of other symptoms associated with being hurled about in the anxiety and depression spin cycle.

At her lowest Helen wrestled with suicide, but with the help of psychoanalysis and judicious drug therapy, she dragged herself into recovery. In her usual irreverent urbane style Helen chronicles her own painful but ultimately transformative experience and draws on that to discuss everything from finding a good shrink to dealing with suicidal thoughts, from tips on what to do when you hate yourself to how to cope with a panic attack.

At a time when youth depression and suicide is on the national agenda, Gas Smells Awful speaks bravely, honestly and optimistically to anyone trying to find a way through the torment of depression.

Formats & editions

  • Paperback

    9781740510950

    June 1, 2001

    Vintage Australia

    232 pages

    RRP $19.99

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