“Agorafabulous!”: Comedian Sara Benincasa’s Agoraphobia

Stand-up comedian and writer Sara Benincasa has a new book entitled Agorafabulous!: Dispatches From My Bedroomwhich is about her experiences with panic attacks, agoraphobia, and depression.

Who is Benincasa? LA Weekly notes that she’s “like a crazier Tina Fey.” The Chicago Tribune refers to her as “delightfully loopy.” The Huffington Post says she’s one of their “favorite female comedians.”

Previously, Benincasa has toured in a one-woman show on the same topic, and, as stated on her website, it’s “garnered great reviews at festivals and one-night stands around the country.”

Benincasa points out in a recent blog post that the process of dredging up old stuff in order to write this book led to a relapse of depression with suicidal thoughts. She went back to therapy. She went back on medication. And she relearned “…a few cardinal rules of living with depression: 1.) Eat properly. 2.) Sleep properly. 3.) Take your pills properly. 4.) Repeat as necessary (which means daily, for the rest of your life.)”

As for the Agorafabulous! reviews:

Booklist: “Hilarious. . . . With expert pacing, the stand-up comic mixes humor and poignant anecdotes from her teen, college, and young adult life. As her empowering tale makes clear, she survives and thrives (with a little help from family, friends, and Prozac).”

Kirkus Reviews: “…Benincasa recounts her adolescent devolution into a ‘full-on, obsessive, cowering, trembling agoraphobe’ [who] discover[s], by accident, the healing power of stand-up comedy. Fabulously quirky and outrageous.”

Publishers Weekly: “Using humor to help her overcome the anxieties that once dominated her life, Benincasa discovers her gift for comedy and storytelling, and finds tranquility.”

In her own style, Benincasa offers a brief explanation of panic attacks in the animated video below:

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