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April 22, 2020

“Sometimes When I’m Sad” Helps Young Children Cope With Sadness, Depression

by Anthony Sciarratta

Deborah Serani's Childrens' Book: Sometimes When I'm Sad

Deborah Serani, PsyD, a senior adjunct professor, psychologist and award-winning author who specializes in clinical depression, is set to release her first children’s book, Sometimes When I’m Sad, on April 28. The book is a sensitive and supportive story that seeks to help young children recognize and cope with sadness.

With the COVID-19 pandemic ongoing, young children are no doubt experiencing feelings they may not know how to deal with, making the release of Dr. Serani’s book even more timely. “We are seeing an increase in pediatric mental health concerns right now,” she said. “Reading Sometimes When I’m Sad offers adults and children immediate ways to soothe and soften the escalating sadness from COVID-19.”

A lifelong Long Islander, Dr. Serani’s books Living with Depression (2012); Depression and Your Child: A Guide for Parents and Caregivers (2013); and Depression in Later Life: An Essential Guide (2016), all published by Rowman & Littlefield, have won numerous awards. She cites that her passion for psychology came from her own personal battle with teenage depression.

“I’ve always wanted to write books in a variety of genres,” she said. “I’ve written nonfiction and fiction. And when the idea percolated for a children’s story, I knew I’d be journeying into children’s picture books.”

Using her personal experience in her work, Dr. Serani said her personal experiences and struggles with mental health have inspired her work, motivating her in her research and furthering her goal of helping others manager their depression. She is determined to banish the stigma that surrounds mental illness and open dialogues among children, parents, teachers and mental health professionals.

The book will be published by Free Spirit Publishing, which plans to publish an entire series of children’s books by Dr. Serani in the future. Her next book, Sometimes When I’m Mad, is scheduled for release in April 2021.

The release of the book coincides with National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day (May 7 this year). Created by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), the day’s purpose is to increase public awareness about the needs of children with serious mental and emotional illnesses and their families, provide information, and encourage those who need help to seek treatment.

Learn more about Dr. Serani.


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