Clear Reads: A Journey Through Depression And Anxiety By Brent Williams

A Book Review

By Holli Kenley

Out of the Woods: A Journey Through Depression and Anxiety is a gentle companion for anyone trying to understand or recover.

Even with the strides made in more recent years helping to peel away the secrecy and stigma surrounding depression and debilitating anxiety, those who suffer from both disorders feel ashamed and those who care about their loved ones struggling with them feel confused about how to help. In “Out of the Woods: A Journey Through Depression and Anxiety”, author Brent Williams bravely shares his narrative through the written word and through a pictorial display of beautifully crafted sketches (illustrated by Korkut Oztekin), providing audiences with a gentle companion for anyone trying to understand or recover from depression and anxiety.

Although there are many healing elements in “Out of the Woods”, as a Marriage & Family Therapist, I particularly appreciated how Brent was able to convey the following  messages:

Depression is debilitating.  If left unattended, it does worsen.  Depression is often accompanied with anxiety which exacerbates feelings of hopelessness and worthlessness.

Depression has a life of its own.  It dominates a person.  Taking the first step in finding help is extremely confusing and complicated.

Depression is treatable.  And although there is common thinking around its genesis, each person is  unique, and different methods and approaches to treatment vary greatly.  It is critical that each individual find a path which works for him.

Depression manifests in physical and psychological symptoms.  Although medication is useful in stabilizing an individual, it is vital to address underlying past trauma, abuse and/or dysfunctional family of origin patterns, along with their ensuing psychological impact.

Depression is a chronic disease, no different than diabetes in that it must be managed over time.  Implementing healthy lifestyle changes not only improves recovery but brings with it a host of benefits for wellness in everyday living.

With his authenticity and openness, Brent Williams has masterfully removed layers of secrecy and stigma for those struggling from depression and anxiety.  Most importantly, by sharing his journey of recovery with its ebbs and tides, and by detailing his commitment to doing the hard work along the way, Williams provides “light at the end of a long dark tunnel” for those struggling to find their way.

Publishers Notes: Holli Kenley is an American Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and the author of “ Daughters Betrayed By Their Mothers: Moving from Brokenness to Wholeness” and “Power Down & Parent Up!: Cyber Bullying, Screen Dependence & Raising Tech-Healthy Children”