“Sometimes the only way to stay Sane is to go a little Crazy”

“In a strange way we were free. We’d reached the end of the line. We had nothing more to lose. Our privacy, our liberty, our dignity: all of this was gone and we were stripped down to the bare bones of our selves” [1]

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I do not often see the film first – beautiful, exciting, attractive: I highly recommend it! – and then look for the book from which it is taken, but in this case it would have been difficult to find it, because “The girl interrupted” was for years in the psychology department, being more than a novel, a real diary of the author and of her broken up years. It is almost ironic that it has been misunderstood as a genre because it is precisely what happened to the protagonist. At seventeen Susanna Kaysen, after a short visit from a doctor she had never seen before, was sent to a psychiatric clinic. She will spend the next two years in the teenage department of McLean Hospital, known for its famous patients (Sylvia Plath, James Taylor and Ray Charles, among others) and for cutting-edge treatment methods. The diagnosis (rapid!) was borderline personality disorder (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Borderline_personality_disorder  ).

I might sound  hypochondriac but after reading the definition I started to worry!


I watched the film, and I was enchanted, so I looked for and found the book, I read it in two days sitting next to the radiator with a tea made of  ginger and goji and a cotton blanket. On the ground, I do not know why, but I felt more comfortable despite the frost. 

 

The central difference that I found between the book and the film is the emotional intensity, one would expect it to be more sophisticated and clear in the book, but I have to admit that I was stunned by the detachment with which Susanna tells us about her years in a psychiatric hospital. It is as if she were completely alienated, as if it had not really happened to her, tumblr_n0xyj6gyxa1sajfado1_400and this in my opinion makes the story even more deep and alarming. It would be easy to be carried away by the pain of a hasty diagnosis that breaks the rhythm of a life at the beginning, but when a person shares it in such a cold way  you understand that perhaps it was not so wrong, that maybe there was a distress, that sometimes it is necessary to see who is worse off to realise that you are fine. 

 

 

 “Sometimes the only way to stay sane is to go a little crazy.” [2]

 

 

 

 

22_la ragazza interrotta
Graphic by: Gioia

Have you ever felt lost?
Have you ever had the feeling of being wrong?
Is this enough to diagnose a disorder?
Is not humanity destined to perpetual displeasure?Who are the real crazy people, then? 

The feeling that this book has left me is the desire to move on! To overcome the small and big difficulties of life, because  making a small mistake is enough to interrupt it. I recommend this reading to those who are afraid, to those who are anguished, to those who feel interrupted, because they will understand that they are not alone and that despite everything, they are lucky. 

 

“Have you ever confused a dream with life? Or stolen something when you have the cash? Have you ever been blue? Or thought your train moving while sitting still? Maybe I was just crazy. Maybe it was the 60’s. Or maybe I was just a girl… interrupted.” [3]

 

 

 


[1] From the book.
[2] From the book.
[3] From the book.

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