I'm Glad My Mom Died
by Jennette McCurdy

Published: 2022-08-09T00:0
Hardcover : 320 pages
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A heartbreaking and hilarious memoir by iCarly and Sam & Cat star Jennette McCurdy about her struggles as a former child actor�¢??including eating disorders, addiction, and a complicated relationship with her overbearing ...

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A heartbreaking and hilarious memoir by iCarly and Sam & Cat star Jennette McCurdy about her struggles as a former child actor�¢??including eating disorders, addiction, and a complicated relationship with her overbearing mother�¢??and how she retook control of her life.

Jennette McCurdy was six years old when she had her first acting audition. Her mother�¢??s dream was for her only daughter to become a star, and Jennette would do anything to make her mother happy. So she went along with what Mom called �¢??calorie restriction,�¢?� eating little and weighing herself five times a day. She endured extensive at-home makeovers while Mom chided, �¢??Your eyelashes are invisible, okay? You think Dakota Fanning doesn�¢??t tint hers?�¢?� She was even showered by Mom until age sixteen while sharing her diaries, email, and all her income.

In I�¢??m Glad My Mom Died, Jennette recounts all this in unflinching detail�¢??just as she chronicles what happens when the dream finally comes true. Cast in a new Nickelodeon series called iCarly, she is thrust into fame. Though Mom is ecstatic, emailing fan club moderators and getting on a first-name basis with the paparazzi (�¢??Hi Gale!�¢?�), Jennette is riddled with anxiety, shame, and self-loathing, which manifest into eating disorders, addiction, and a series of unhealthy relationships. These issues only get worse when, soon after taking the lead in the iCarly spinoff Sam & Cat alongside Ariana Grande, her mother dies of cancer. Finally, after discovering therapy and quitting acting, Jennette embarks on recovery and decides for the first time in her life what she really wants.

Told with refreshing candor and dark humor, I�¢??m Glad My Mom Died is an inspiring story of resilience, independence, and the joy of shampooing your own hair.

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Discussion Questions

1. The story is told through a series of linear vignettes, with some time gaps in between. How did that format work for you? We you able to fill in the gaps?
2. Of all of the red flags in Jennette’s relationship with her mom, which was the reddest for you?
3. Look, we aren’t psychologists, but it’s obvious that mental illness pervades Jennette’s life– there are her own issues, and also that of her mother, boyfriend and perhaps even her father. How did you respond to reading about it? How might you have responded had you been a family member, fellow stage mom or friend?
4. “I’m becoming an angry person with no tolerance for anyone. I’m aware of this shift and yet have no desire to change it. If anything, I want it. It’s armor. It’s easier to be angry than to feel to pain underneath it.”??Was her anger an avoidance mechanism? Or did it ultimately save her?
5. “She wanted this. And I wanted her to have it. I wanted her to be happy. But now that I have it, I realize that she’s happy and I’m not. Her happiness came at the cost of mine. I feel robbed and exploited.”??Have you found yourself in circumstances where your desire to please others came at too high a cost for your own happiness or sanity?
6. She says in the book that she had to get a handle on the disordered eating before she could deal with the rest. How did you respond to McCurdy’s therapy journey? And what did you think of her first therapist? The hugging and the insistence on being Jenette’s plus one at industry events. Was that a helpful approach, or did it smack a little too much of her mother’s wannabe syndrome?
7. In interviews, McCurdy frequently deflects questions about the hush money offer from Nickelodeon. She felt that it it’s a headline grabber, but that focusing on it too much distracts from her primary narrative? If so, then why do you think she included it? And would you have taken the money?
8. Did you listen to the book on audio? If so, How did you respond to McCurdy’s delivery?
9. “Why do we romanticize the dead? Why can’t we be honest about them? Especially moms, they’re the most romanticized of anyone.”??Good question. Do we romanticize the dead? Is it OK to be glad (or at least relieved) when someone has died?
10. When you hear stories like this (and other high-profile child star meltdowns from Lindsay Lohan and Brittany Spears), does it make you view young actors differently? How can you be a discerning consumer of entertainment that features minors? And what should the studios and agents be doing differently?
From libromaniacs.com

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