I finally finished Black Pain by Terrie Williams. It has been in my possession for about a month now and I believe it took me I would say at least 3-3.5 weeks to finish it. So let’s get started with the review.
Black Pain is a book that brings to light depression in the black community. Terrie Williams is a clinical social worker with a degree in psychology who wrote who herself has suffered from depression.
This book was very informative and relatable. As someone who is African American I understand first hand the issues that can lead a fellow African American to depression. The problem is, getting help is considered a stigma in the black community. You can’t show weakness no matter what. And because of this many people in our community don’t get the professional help they need. Which then in turns causes them to make bad life choices along the way. This is the kind of stuff Williams discusses in her book. Another thing I found interesting is that so many of our people don’t trust white doctors. Or they feel the need to try and impress them. Then again some people don’t trust doctors at all. I remember when my doctor (a black woman) told me I was at risk of having high cholesterol. Now she didn’t prescribed me any medication but she did give me a list of things I should and shouldn’t eat. However, my mother made it abundantly clear she didn’t want me to take any medication for fear I was going to get hooked on them! What?! I can barely swallow an Advil. But what if she did prescribed me medication? Then what? My mother is so convinced that medication is not always the answer and that all doctors know how to do is take take take. Now, me, my mother nor Terrie Williams is saying all doctors are bad. However, not all doctors have your best interest at heart. And you should keep pushing until you find the right doctor to help you. One aspect I found particularly disturbing was that in the 1970s over 300 African American men were killed in an experiment to figure out the effects syphilis had on the body. The worst lart is that these men had no idea what was going on. They thoufht tey were being treated when it fact they were being killed on by on. The doctors had no regard for the value of a black man ( can you see why we don’t trust doctors).
My perspective has changed as well. Many people who are mentally I’ll suffers from depression. At least some of them do. You may know a woman who is know for sleeping around, or a man who drinks too much, or a fellow friends who smokes too much weed. These people all have their own pain. They depressed in some way and it’s our job to take heed to it.
This book is not to make anyone feel bad. Black or white or otherwise. This book is simply to inform fellow African Americans that they are not alone in their pain. Famous celebrities that Mary J Blige and even Mariah Carey have gone through some stages of depression. So, if you are feeling down, can’t get out of bed, or overeating…please, PLEASE! Read this book or talk to someone.
Because this book is nonfiction I can’t really give it a rating. All I can say is that this book has really changed my perspective on life. As I’ve gotten older I’ve tried not to be so judgmental of people. After reading Black Pain I can say I will try even harder to understand people’s pain.
Until next time!