Friday, October 18, 2013

Freaking Out (edited) by Polly Wells : ARC Review

"When anxiety has you in its grip, it can seem impossible to rationalize your way out of it."

That sweaty, gut-clenching, suffocating, racing-heart feeling. That dull, never-ending sense that something's wrong. Anxiety affects millions of young adults. From phobias to compulsiveness to post traumatic stress disorder, "Freaking Out" chronicles the many guises of excessive anxiety in teens' lives and the havoc it can wreak.

These 13 true stories span the anxiety spectrum, from heightened adolescent angst to full-blown disorders. The triggers for the teens in this book range from the stress of getting into college, to the loss of a parent, to day-to-day social encounters. Their stories explore the different ways each learned to unshackle themselves from the weight of overwhelming worry.

In "Nowhere to Hide," Caroline suffers debilitating panic attacks brought on in part by extreme shyness. In "Exiled," Alana's treatment at the hand of bullies makes her anxiety even worse. In "The Enemy Next Door" Noah grapples with the paralyzing, unexplained fear of dogs that has caused him anxiety since childhood. And in "War Story," Hamid, alone in a new country, must confront his post traumatic stress disorder.

Including an afterword written by psychologist Stacie Isenberg of The Ross Center in Washington, D.C., "Freaking Out" offers young people a vivid understanding of what anxiety feels like, positive tools to minimize its effects, and the reassurance that they can live a full and rewarding life even if they find themselves in its grip.

Paperback, 130 pages
Published June 13th 2013 by Annick Press
ISBN 1554515440 (ISBN13: 9781554515448)

My thought:

It took me quite long enough to finish the book when it's not that thick. Maybe it's because I, myself, have these anxiety disorder symptoms that sometimes I need to stop for a moment to deal with my own anxiety while reading this. :D So one story at a time.
I'm able to relate with those stories and although I know that I'm not the only one, it's quite ... um ... surprising that large number of people suffer this. It also got me thinking, that my problems are not as bad as I thought, at least compared to some of these people. 

Anyway, what I learned from this book is that in the end, these teenagers/young adults were finally able to manage/reduce their anxiety. Mostly it's after they talked to someone to counsel and after they accepted things as the way it is. 
So that's one of the important message in this book: if you suffered from anxiety, or you know someone experience this, go to someone who's capable to help you. A teacher, a counselor, a psychologist. Or if you don't know any, ask your parents / family members / friends that you could trust to help you find any help.

It's definitely a simple-easy-to-read book, yet powerful and helpful enough. Definitely a keeper. I guess I'd (and could) re-read it some other times whenever I need support/inspirations to remind me that I CAN do this. 

Recommended for teenagers or parents or teachers or anyone who have to deal with anxiety.

Thanks to Annick Press Ltd. for providing the ARC via Net Galley.

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