Someday This Pain Will Be Useful to You

April 11, 2008 at 8:54 am 1 comment

Loved this book. I think what particularly rang true for me were the scenes with the therapist and the way that James received the “message” of the book–begrudgingly.

It sucks to realize your parents are right about something. And not just parents–adults in general. It’s even worse to be wrong when someone you care about is involved. James really hits the trifecta: he badly hurts someone he respects–maybe even loves–without realizing it, gets rejected in the process, and has to admit he was wrong to pick up the pieces.

While I had a little trouble relating to James at first (as I do with all fictional teens living in New York City, a place that terrifies and overwhelms me), I slowly found a bit of myself in him. My disdain for my peers never really reached his, but I can certainly remember feeling a little adrift in a sea of teenagers. And he was certainly a lot snarkier about it, but I can remember sitting across from a therapist I thought was sort of an idiot and wanting him to just get to the point already.

To me, this book would have been a perfect fit with the Social Competencies week, although I suppose it would be equally fitting for Or A Lack Thereof. It’s all about finding your place in the world and realizing that your own actions have an impact, sometimes a much bigger one than imagined, on those who impact us.


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1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Linda  |  April 13, 2008 at 9:55 am

    Interestingly, there are several adults who have read this book and said, “James is just like my husband/boyfriend.” In other words James rings true, at least to adults. The question we’ll talk about in class is if he rings true to teens.

    On the topic of parents, right or wrong, James parents made me a bit crazy and I can see how they made him crazy. But, they did have their adult knowledge that actually was accurate. Oh well.


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