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Depression Management from the School of Hard Knocks

  • June 05, 2017

This is the talk I gave for my Notre Dame 2017 35th reunion on June 3, recounting my first depressive episode at the University of Notre Dame. The visuals are reversed - what I refer to as being on the left is on the right and vice versa. Wonderful to reconnect with my ND Classmates and see all the powerful things they are doing. Go Irish '82! I am VERY proud of bo...

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Music and the Brain

  • May 22, 2017

On May 20th, Julie spoke at Soluna's Music and the Brain - a remarkable collaboration between Dallas Symphony Orchestra and UT Southwestern Medical School. Dr. Mark Goldberg, Chair of Neurology and Neurotherapeutics at UT Southwestern curated the event including keynotes Dr. Ping Ho from UCLA, Tod Machover composer and an innovator in the application of technology i...

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Ken Hersh (My Husband) Gives an Outstanding Commencement Speech at St Mark’s School of Texas

  • May 21, 2017

This is a deviation from the typical Struck by Living entry, but I had a moment this week when I was struck in awe by how lucky I am to be alive and well. Ken (my husband) gave a commencement speech at St. Mark's School of Texas Friday night (5/19/17). The skies looked threatening, rain fell and a little lightning flared in the distance. He never wavered, even whe...

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A Conversation with Dr. Madhukar Trivedi and Dr. Vikram Patel

  • March 31, 2017

March 29, 2017, UT Southwestern Peter O’Donnell, Jr. Brain Institute and Austin College hosted Dr. Vikram Patel and Dr. Madhukar Trivedi in a discussion about changing the model of mental health care. Both of these men have participated in work that pushes care out into the community. Dr. Patel published a manual, Where There is No Psychiatrist in 2003.. He u...

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UTSW Peter O’Donnell, Jr. Brain Institute Cocktails and Conversation

  • March 24, 2017

On March 8, 2017, Bonnie and Peter Smith hosted an event as part of the UTSW Peter O'Donnell Jr. Brain Institute.  I was on a panel with Dr. Marc Diamond – brilliant UT Southwestern research who is Director of the Center for Alzheimer's and Neurodegenerative Diseases and, moderated by Dr. Mark Dr. Mark Goldberg, Chair of the Department of Neurology an...

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Feature on “Stories of the Mind” on PBS - and in an interview with Think on Krys Boyd

  • April 26, 2016

Yet another person came up to me at the Cooper Center yesterday and said "I heard you on NPR." I was a little confused by this considering I have not done an interview with NPR since 2010 when I had an interview with Krys Boyd (whom I greatly admire BTW, this was clearly the best interview of the ones done when my book was published). Then in the haze of post spring mad...

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Beating Back the January Blues

  • February 27, 2016

I suffered a major depressive episode this January, my first depressive break in eight years.  Some of you may have noticed that I haven’t written for Psychology Today in over 90 days. My pen stopped because I knew I should write about my relapse, but I was afraid of the impact my openness might have on my other work (Board Chair of the Dallas Theater Center)...

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The Black Dot and Bringing the Conversation to Light

  • November 13, 2015

Yesterday, I had the honor of speaking at the Jordan Elizabeth Harris Foundation Bring the Conversation to Light Luncheon.  Wonderful organization developed in honor of Jordan Harris, who lost her life to depression at age 22. I followed Mark Ware who detailed the work MHMR of Tarrant County has done in suicide prevention and preceded Eric Hipple. Eric is a go...

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From the Ashes of Disaster…

  • May 13, 2015

Last night’s talk was a train wreck. I violated all my cardinal rules of public speaking 1. Prepare 2. Don’t depend on technology 3. If you rely on technology have a backup plan. In all honesty I did prepare. I watched the film my son Daniel and I made with the Mental Health Channel and my entire speech hinged on the preface of that 8 minute film. When I ar...

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Savor the Moment - A Year’s Worth of Peak Experiences this Month

  • December 10, 2014

I read Rick Hanson's Buddha's Brain this month and am trying to put into practice his idea of savoring experiences. His theory is our brains are predisposed to negativity. In this TED talk, he mentions that for every five positive experiences we have, one negative one wipes them out. This worked well in prehistoric humans - the person entranced by blue sky often...

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Testimonial

"Julie Hersh has bravely recounted her experiences with suicidality and depression. Her story is profound yet poetic. Julie's narrative provides a much-needed patient-centered perspective to those who care for the mentally ill. Her passion for communicating the devastating effects of depression and suicidality to others is a powerful tool in the war against the social stigma experienced by those who live with suicidal thoughts, those who have made suicide attempts, and those who have survived the suicide of a loved one."

Jane Mahoney
Jane Mahoney, PhD, RN, PMHCNS-BC, Director of Nursing Practice and Research,The Menninger Clinic: Assistant Professor, Menninger Department of Psychiatry, Baylor College of MedicineHouston, TX
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About Struck By Living

In Struck by Living, Julie Hersh picks apart the irony of her life with humor and brutal honesty. Despite a loving husband, healthy children, financial security, Julie attempted suicide three times. With the help of ECT (electroconvulsive therapy), Julie broke the deadly course of her disorder. Now well, Julie promotes the importance of mental health with collaborations with other artists and organizations.

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