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Us, After: A Memoir of Grief and Healing

Book cover of Us, After: A Memoir of Love and Suicide by Rachel Zimmermann

Rachel Zimmermann is a Boston-area journalist who has a special connection to Ananda Lowe, the Director of Boston Doula Circle. Ananda was the postpartum doula for Rachel's family after the birth of their second baby. The two women became co-authors of The Doula Guide to Birth, which was the first book for both of them in 2009. Rachel's newest book is called Us, After: A Memoir of Love and Suicide, about the death of her husband Seth Teller, who was a devoted father as well as a robotics professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Ananda has written a review of the book on Goodreads:

This book was not only about suicide, but the ways in which we learn how to go about our most intimate relationships as partners and parents. (That is, our most important bonds, which don’t come with instruction manuals.)  The author had a loving husband who was also a respected professor at MIT, a prestigious university with a tragically high suicide rate. Perhaps he had undiagnosed bipolar disorder, but she didn’t know it and did not see his death coming.  In earlier sections of the book, Rachel recalls stories from her life with her husband, Seth, as a way of trying to figure out how and why this could have happened. In one scene, they are enjoying their daughter’s birthday party at a local pizza parlor, when Seth becomes irritated at a comment Rachel has made and he stomps off. “What did I say?” she asks her mom-friends at the party. One of them turns to her and says, “Rachel, we all have the same marriage.” Rachel takes this to mean that her marriage is no better or worse than anyone else’s. Sometimes, we simply need to know that we are normal at a moment like this, and it will pass. (It was not an indicator of his suicidality, just a reflection of the ordinary frustrations that pop up even in generally happy partnerships.) 

(To read the full book review by Ananda Lowe, click here.)

Rachel will give a reading of the book at Porter Square Books in Cambridge, MA (USA) on July 1, followed by a book tour to New York, California, and other states this summer.  The full schedule of author readings can be found here.  We'd love to see you there!

Seth, Rachel, and Ananda at the book party for The Doula Guide to Birth, 2009
(Seth, Rachel, and Ananda at the book party for The Doula Guide to Birth, 2009)

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