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45 of 45 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars my depression
i first read this book 18 months ago whilst in the deepest darkest pit of my depression, this booked helped me beyond words and it gave me comfort and help and relief that i was not alone.

i am currently re-reading this excellent, truthful, honest book as i am again within my darkest pit.

i can not explain why this book helps except to say that it is...
Published on 21 May 2009 by Mrs. Victoria Stokes

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33 of 43 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars part good part bad
Sally is a victim of her families own wealth which causes part of her depression and then the wealth she has helps her recover from depression and alcoholism. I am a normal working mother I cannot afford to take 3 years off work to recover. I certainly couldn't afford a landscape gardener, ever. 4000 for rehab??? acupunture weekly? I can barely afford it 6 weekly...
Published on 23 April 2008 by Amazon Customer


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45 of 45 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars my depression, 21 May 2009
By 
This review is from: Shoot the Damn Dog: A Memoir of Depression (Paperback)
i first read this book 18 months ago whilst in the deepest darkest pit of my depression, this booked helped me beyond words and it gave me comfort and help and relief that i was not alone.

i am currently re-reading this excellent, truthful, honest book as i am again within my darkest pit.

i can not explain why this book helps except to say that it is real, it is honest and it helps me beyond words. i have purchased 2 further copies for my families, as they do not understand and the book says it all.

thank you sally for having the courage and the words to write this book.
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133 of 136 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Harrowing and brilliant, 22 Jan 2008
By 
I have just finished sally's book and found it truely amazing. In fact i bawled my eyes out after reading the first few chapters when i realised her story was so like mine (and my family) and others who suffer from this truely terrifying disease. Like Sally herself, my brother had tried to kill himself recently. Thankfully, mercifully, i was never that ill.
The beauty with Sally's account is she just tells her story just as it is, and in total honesty, which is very brave. I commend her for standing up to the stigma, fear and ignornace that is out there about depression.
I love the way Sally offers some meaningfull tips and advice on how one can perhaps better cope with the disease on a day to day basis.She offers none of the usual patronising miracle cures which other so called 'experts' have often written about.

You must read this book if you know anybody who suffers from this 'black dog' or if you are a sufferer yourself. At first i was afraid to read it, but now i am so, so, glad that i did.
Truely immense.
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45 of 46 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars What a fantastic read, 11 Mar 2008
By 
Mrs. C. A. Gordon (Berkshire) - See all my reviews
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This book is a must for anyone coping with depression, or living with someone who suffers from it.
Sally Brampton is painfully honest in her book, and you can really feel you get to know her warts and all.
I dont suffer from depression myself, but I have a huge interest in mental health and this read was both informative and enlightening.
I cannot recommend this book enough.
Get a copy I bet you will want to reread it.
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars THE users guide to depression, 29 April 2008
Most sufferers of depression, including me, have read the numerous self-help guides and the "What is.." textbooks for laypeople in attempts to treat themselves, thoroughly inform themselves or to just try to make sense of the world they find themselves in. Although the former two groups get some of their mental fodder from "Shoot the damn dog", I reckon it mostly helps those of us who want to share with someone who's been there. I didn't find this book harrowing or difficult.
Okay, Sally Brompton doesnt represent - and doesnt claim to be - the typical depressive; partly because there is no such person. Each brings their unique past, present and future (hopes) into the illness and needs to deal with that. Sally recognises this but finds some solace in others who have "been there": the black hole, the black dog, the emptiness within or whatever you call depression.
This is a sensible and balanced book. Sally walks a middle path between the "biological" and the "psychoanalytical" camps that set themselves up in the enormous and amorphous field of psychiatry, rarely crossing their carefully drawn boundaries to share knowledge or, god forbid, work together. Sally meets some who have, but I suspect she may be an exception (and exceptional). She advises those who cant get on with a therapist to find another. While acknowledging this can be difficult for a withdrawn depressive, a number of NHS users may not have access to alternative treatments, particularly of the psychological kind, let alone be able to change therapists .
With that caveat, I found this a great book. Its not just a "me too" book, joining the other people who found the courage to "come out". She deals with shame, suicidality, support, friends, family and even fun and laughter. This book should be in every psychiatric ward and, even more than that, it should be on every psychiatrist or psychotherapist's shelf.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Highly Recommend, 28 May 2008
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I would highly recommend that anyone suffering from depression or wishing to understand depression reads this book. I found it incredibly helpful and informing. I admire Sally for her honesty.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gripping, Moving and Practical, 19 April 2008
By 
L. J. Purcell (London) - See all my reviews
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It's extremely difficult to write about depression without being . . well . . depressing. Either the books available are weighty, medical tomes sodden with theory and jargon, or a dismal wander through the psyche of a 'celebrity'.

Sally Brampton's descent into depression began with the break-up of her marriage. She didn't respond to antidepressants and found solace in alcohol. It took four agonising years for her to pull herself out of this hole and she takes us on the journey. It's a painful, honest and extremely well written one. Her loneliness and self-loathing is palpable, and anyone who has suffered from depression will recognise with a wince, the way in which well meaning people (and sometimes not so well meaning) seek to trivialise or downgrade what the sufferer is going through.

Shoot the Damn Dog is not a 'how to get out of depression' manual, although there is much practical and helpful advice. But like John Diamond's 'C - Because Cowards Get Cancer Too' - it deserves and should be read by the professionals as a tool for understanding how depression really feels.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Highly recommended, 18 April 2008
I have just finished reading "Shoot the damn dog" and may read it again. It is the best recount of depression I have read so far. Sally describes what happened to her and at the same time gives factual information on symptoms, available therapies, recent search studies etc. The links between B12 vitamin deficiency, thyroid problems and alcoholism to depression, which she describes, are interesting and worth checking up. OK, her opinion on the various therapies is subjective but she does not deny it. This is a story of a dark journey with a light at the end of the tunnel. Her way out of the tunnel was not a linear process. One step forward, two backward and three sideways, as she says. Connecting with others and "rearranging your emotions" is the message I got from it. If you read it you may get a different message but, definitively, this is a book to read if you know someone who suffers from depression or if you feel depressed yourself. In my opinion, this book can give hope.
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42 of 45 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Total brilliance, 27 Feb 2008
Finally a book I can relate to!

I do suffer from depression and find this book inspiring and useful to see there is a way to get through life!

Sally writes with honesty and factually about the illness and offers really useful personal advice, with a little light humour thrown in.

I am particually impressed that she writes through experience, which is what attracted me to the write up I saw in a magazine.

This is a book I would recommend to anyone suffering from any form of depression. Enjoy, learn and know you can do it!
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Like a light being switched on, 21 Dec 2010
By 
J. R. Bestall "Spuds" (Herefordshire) - See all my reviews
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I'd never heard of Sally Brompton before coming across this book in a search for enlightenment (yes, I really mean enlightenment) so, unlike other reviewers, I had no pre-concieved ideas which may have clouded my enjoyment of it. Sure, her background is in the Fashion industry and some may see that industry as shallow and consumer-based. But clynical depression knows no boundaries and a person's vocation has no bearing on whether they're likely to suffer, or whether (as a sufferer) their experience can help others. To be honest, until I read this book I seriously wondered what was wrong with me, and whether I could possibly be suffering from depression. Hence the title of this review, and the use of the word "enlightenment".
More eloquent reviewers have written much better reviews than I'm capable of, so I'll keep it simple.
The book does have a happy ending (for those that need one, and who doesn't?), so if you're suffering from depression (or wonder whether you may be, like I did), then the likelihood is that reading it TO THE END can help you. In many places, I found the similarities between what the author was feeling and my own feelings frighteningly similar.
If you think you know someone who is suffering from depression, then I'd also recommend you read it to the end. There's no doubt it will help you to understand what that person is going through, and (more importantly), it will help you to help them, if you love them enough.
These days I find it difficult to stick with any book to the end, but this one was no problem. In fact I marked several chapters to be read again, the most useful being 9; Fine is a Four-Letter Word.
Despite me being in another black hole at the time I read it, this book left me with a palpable feeling of optimism. I now know some of the reasons why I feel the way I do, and (crucially) I know I'm not on my own and I have some of the tools to help myself.
That's as much of a recommendation as I'm able to give, but it does deserve 5 stars from me.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a beautifully touching book, 6 April 2008
By 
E. Kingston (London, UK) - See all my reviews
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I wasn't sure what this book was going to be when I started reading. I was concerned that it may upset me more that help me. I need not have worried. This is a beautifully written book, which tells a powerfully uplifting story.

The author's decision not to force her book into a linear structure adds an oral story telling quality which, when coupled with direct addresses to the reader, makes the reading of the book more like a conservation with a wiser friend.

This is a book of hope and compassion which I would recommend to anyone who is suffering, or has ever suffered, from depression.
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Shoot the Damn Dog: A Memoir of Depression
Shoot the Damn Dog: A Memoir of Depression by Sally Brampton (Paperback - 2 Feb 2009)
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