Denise Welch to publish account of living with depression for Hodder

Denise Welch to publish account of living with depression for Hodder

Hodder & Stoughton is publishing a "brave" and "honest" account of living with depression, written by actor and "Loose Women" panellist Denise Welch.

In The Unwelcome Visitor: Depression and How I Survive, Welch chronicles her journey with depression over the past 30 years and sets out to show readers how they too can manage and live a full life alongside their own "unwelcome visitor".

Publisher Briony Gowlett, who acquired British Commonwealth rights from Gordon Wise at Curtis Brown to publish the book in June, said Welch had "a keen ability to relate to people from all different walks of life", adding that "her sharing of her lived experience is invaluable as part of the conversation around mental health".

In September Welch shared a video of herself on social media in the midst of a mild episode of clinical depression, in which she explained to her followers the physical and emotional effects of the diagnosis in a series of clips. It received widespread support and, Welch said, as a result, "this is my story that you have asked me to tell".

"Last year I posted an episode of my depression whilst I was going through it. I felt stripped bare and vulnerable, but I felt I had to show how it really felt," said Welch. "Although I have spoken out about my illness for over 30 years, I was overwhelmed by the response to these posts. Over 1.5 million people saw them and thousands sent heartbreaking messages to me. I realised that although we have come a long way, this crippling, debilitating often terminal illness is still shockingly misunderstood. This is my story that you have asked me to tell. Those who suffer from depression will understand and those who don’t will hopefully learn how to. This is the Unwelcome Visitor."

Hodder said Welch would be "typically candid" in the book, while bringing "her trademark humour and honesty to a conversation that we must continue to have" and "reassur[ing] readers it is brave and courageous to be open and vulnerable, and they too can take back control". It will publish in hardback and digital editions on 25th June 2020.