By Danielle C. Belton
Author Benilde Little wants black women to know it’s OK. It’s OK to let go. It’s OK to cry. It’s OK to break down.
In fact, in her new memoir, Welcome to My Breakdown, she welcomes black women doing so, becoming vulnerable and confronting their pain.
In Breakdown, Little recounts her life as someone whom her mother described as one who “feels too much.” After her parents became older and infirm, with her mother eventually dying, Little found herself lost in the fog of severe depression. Yet the roots of that depression reached deeper than grief; she was at a loss of self. Death only made her lingering sadness more profound.
“Before I lost my mother, I lost a part of myself because I wasn’t writing,” Little said. “I wasn’t working. I wasn’t producing. That made me more vulnerable to the deeper depression when she died.”
Little, who saw success with her first novel, Good Hair, then dealt with the ups and downs of writing, publishing and living, knows about the fantasy of “making it” and also that all your problems being prologue isn’t real.
A book ends, but life goes on.