I received Tamra Mercieca’s two books – The Upside of Down, and Getting Naked – having interviewed her for my radio show Eros Evolution. During the show, I was struck by her honesty and vulnerability in sharing how she overcame depression and suicide tendencies to live a full life now.
I literally began reading and could not put down her first book The Upside of Down: A Personal Journey and Toolkit to Overcome Depression, until I finished it. Having had depression at least twice in my life myself, I was not just interested to hear the details of Mercieca’s story, but also in picking up tips to better support my future clients who might have depression (while I always recommend that they work with other specialized helping professionals, I feel I also need to have some basic knowledge).
Published in 2009, the book opens by making clear that it intends to provide general information with great care taken to ensure the accuracy, but is not a substitute for medical or psychiatric evaluation or treatment. In fact, this was sensitively repeated in appropriate places in different places in the book – to seek professional help if needed. I appreciated how Mercieca never lost sight of her reader – and her genuine concern and warm tone carries through this book. The book is divided into four main segments: Introduction (her story); Mind (psychological aspects of depression); Body (physical aspects); Soul (emotional stuff); and Moving Forward.
Besides her own story, Mercieca interweaved stories of other people who battled depression, and what helped them. This helped to fleshed out what worked for those, and might help the reader. Other than the chapters containing her own story, every chapter after was just a few pages – with practical exercises contained. These quick easy-to-read chapters are designed to be used for fast remedies or as quick references. Then there were also the mind-body-soul checklists at the end of each segment that sums up everything covered.
There were facts, figures and information which I didn’t know, and I recognize the amount of research and effort that has gone into this. I recommend this sensitively and thoughtfully-written book to people who are going through depression. It was written by somebody who has been there, emerged from the dark side, and genuinely wants to support others.
Who is Martha?
Dr. Martha Tara Lee is Founder and Clinical Sexologist of Eros Coaching. She is a certified sexologist with a Doctorate in Human Sexuality. She provides sexuality and relationship coaching for individuals and couples, conducts sexual education workshops and speaks at public events. She is the author of the books Love, Sex and Everything In-Between, and Orgasmic Yoga. She is also the host of the weekly radio show Eros Evolution on OMTimes Radio. For more, visit www.ErosCoaching.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org.