Title: Hello Me, It’s You
Author: Hannah Todd, Anonymous
Genres: Non-Fiction, Mental Health
Publisher: Hello Me, It’s You
Release Date: Oct 10th, 2016
“Keep smiling and being you. Don’t let the world change you”
Hello Me, it’s You is a collection of letters by young adults aged 17-24 about their experiences with mental health issues. The letters are written to their 16-year-old selves, giving beautifully honest advice, insight and encouragement for all that lays ahead of them.
This book was produced by the Hello Me, it’s You charity, set up by the editor, Hannah. Hannah was diagnosed with depression and anxiety whilst at university and found comfort in talking to friends about their experiences, realising she was not alone in her situation. This inspired the idea for the charity and book. Through the creation of materials such as this, the charity aims to provide reassurance for young adults (and their families) who are experiencing mental health issues and give a voice to young adults on such an important topic. The result of that will hopefully be a reduction in the negative stigma surrounding mental health and an increase in awareness of young people’s experiences. All profits go the Hello Me, it’s You charity, for the production of future supportive books.
Trigger warning: Due to it’s nature, the content of this book may be triggering. Contains personal experiences of depression, anxiety, schizophrenia, trichotillomania and other mental health issues, as well as issues such as assault.
Hello Me, It’s You is a compilation of 27 letters, written by people aged 17-24 and for their 16-year-old selves. These touching letters are compiled by Hannah Todd as part of the Hello Me, It’s You charity that aims to help young adults cope with their mental health issues, raise awareness and reduce the negative stigma surrounding mental illnesses. Each letter is accompanied by its own beautiful typography that offers kind words and reassuring messages to anyone reading.
When I saw this compilation on NetGalley, I was immediately hit with a swirl of emotions. On the one hand, I was eager to read this because I knew I would benefit from what these people have written. On the other hand, I was afraid because I knew these letters will hit too close to home. That fear was also the reason why it took me so long to read this. In the end, however, I’m so glad I that I did.
Each letter is unique on its own, but all of them have something in common – their authors’ unwavering positivity and unearthly strength. The way each letter is written is so personal and profound, and it resonates with you as if the words on the page are specifically meant for you. As I read each one, I felt for the authors and for their younger selves, and I identified with so many of them.
Hello Me, It’s You is a hard book to read, but it’s also extremely relieving to know that there are other people struggling with the same things you are, and that most of them have found their light at the end of the tunnel, while others are working hard towards it.
I teared up on the very first page and I knew this had to be read in the middle of the night when nobody would hear me sniffling under the covers. I cried genuine tears at every page and then I smiled at the end of each letter. They all filled me with such hope and made me more determined to be more accepting of myself and work harder on getting better. This book really does make your weaknesses seem less of a burden and more like something you’re able to conquer with just a little push.
Overall, Hello Me, It’s You is something that just needs to be read. Whether you’ve struggled with your mental health, you’re struggling now, or know someone who is, this compilation of letters will help shed some light on both the ugly sides of mental illness, and the possibility of a happy ending. The amount of positivity is truly infectious in this. I’m so grateful to the people who wrote these letters, and to Hannah Todd for compiling them. Reading this book been a real eye-opening experience, one that I will be coming back to whenever I hit a low.