Prozac Nation: Young and Depressed in America - Chapter 11, Good Morning Heartache Summary & Analysis

Elizabeth Wurtzel
This Study Guide consists of approximately 30 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Prozac Nation.
This section contains 511 words
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Chapter 11, Good Morning Heartache Summary and Analysis

Despite the fact that they have been broken up for awhile, Wurtzel goes to see Rafe at Brown. She realizes that Rafe loved her and really cared for her, but he also was interested in the parts of her that were obsessed with him and utterly fell apart when she could not be with him all the time. Her depression was a part of why he liked Wurtzel and he made her less healthy because of this.

Wurtzel decides she needs to go back to school and devote herself to Harvard and therapy full-time. Dr. Sterling convinces her this is the best option and she agrees. Meanwhile, Wurtzel's mother is telling her to take time away from school to dedicate herself exclusively to therapy and getting better. Wurtzel thinks her timing is horribly bad and once again gets the feeling like her mother is treating her depression as if it were a broken car and it just needs to be fixed already. She tries to explain that she believes she's getting better, but her mother takes some convincing. After the phone call, however, Dr. Sterling has to convince Wurtzel that her mother is wrong and plainly tells her that she thinks both of her parents are slightly mad.

When Wurtzel returns to Harvard, she doesn't want to go to Stillman, but has trouble being alone in her apartment. She is haunted by constant thoughts of suicide. Instead of the mental institution, she chooses to go to California again to visit her cousin, once again choosing a random location and assuming it will be the next way that she can fix all of her problems. As soon as she's there, she begins obsessively reading and writing, interviewing Joni Mitchell and contemplating taking time off to write an entire novel about Mitchell. Despite her cousin's pleas to relax, she works constantly.

By the time she leaves California, she is no longer obsessed with Rafe. She believes that all of the sun-soaking has righted her and she feels much better. When she is back home, she no longer has the energy to go to her therapy sessions, so she talks with Dr. Sterling over the phone instead. Her roommate Samantha once had mental depression like Wurtzel is experiencing, but broke out of it, and when Wurtzel starts to cry, she tries to find people for Wurtzel to talk with. Suddenly, Wurtzel remembers that Samantha's ex-boyfriend Manuel lives in London and helped her during her bad times. Samantha agrees that Manuel would be great for her and soon Wurtzel is on the way to London.

It's early enough in the semester for Wurtzel to find a way to take independent studies that will help her to get credits while in London. She packs her books and is ready to go. Nearly everyone approves except for her advisor, who plainly tells her he thinks it's a bad idea because he visited her in the hospital and thinks she needs to stay here.

This section contains 511 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
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