A vital and triumphant story of perseverance and recovery by one of Canada’s foremost advocates for mental health
When Mark Henick was a teenager in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, he was overwhelmed by depression and anxiety that led to a series of increasingly dangerous suicide attempts. One night, he climbed onto a bridge over an overpass and stood in the wind, clinging to a girder. Someone shouted, “Jump, you coward!” Another man, a stranger in a brown coat, talked to him quietly, calmly and with deep empathy. Just as Henick’s feet touched open air, the man in the brown coat encircled his chest and pulled him to safety. This near-death experience changed Henick’s life forever.
So-Called Normal: A Memoir of Family, Depression and Resilience is Henick’s story about growing up in a broken home and the events that led to that fateful night on the bridge. It is a vivid and personal account of the mental health challenges he experienced in childhood and his subsequent journey toward healing and recovery.
“Beautifully written, heart-wrenching, and hopeful”
“A candid, graceful, and courageous account that will offer a lifeline to others”
“A mesmerizing, heart-stopping must-read”
“Compelling, beautifully written and inspiring”
James Martin, SJ
“Mark Henick gives us the gift of hope”
“Courageously and gracefully written”
“A ray of light and learning for all of us”
“A triumph of authenticity”
Mark Henick dedicated his life from an early age to opening minds and creating change. Now he regularly speaks to diverse audiences about mental health, mental illness, suicide, advocacy, recovery, and hope. Mark’s TEDx talk on suicide is among the most watched in the world.
His keynotes, panels, workshops, and media appearances aim to break the stigma that prevents people from speaking openly about their mental health. Mark believes that freedom is found in overcoming the barriers that stigma, disempowerment, and disconnection build. Mark has seen countless times, personally and professionally, that each and every person has the potential to unlock their most true and hopeful self regardless of how dark it may seem.
Book Mark Henick to tell his powerful story at your next event.