When Grandpa Died cover

When Grandpa Died

When Grandpa Died
Stevens
1979

Submitter: Aside from the fact that the book cover is wearing out and the pages smell from 40+ years of age, the 70’s clothing made a book with a serious topic somewhat laughable because it looks so dated. Dad in particular is rocking some rad tight jeans, Beatles boots, and an epic ‘stache. Plus, note the photo where Dad comforts Mom as she cries about Grandpa. The book says it looks like Dad is about to cry too, but it rather looks like he’s taken comfort from the open beer bottle sitting on the floor next to him. Not the imagery you’d probably see in a realistic photo book published for kids today.

Why am I afraid to tell you who I am cover

Why Am I Afraid to Tell You Who I Am?

Why Am I Afraid to Tell You Who I Am
Powell
1969

Submitter: This well loved 1969 copy of John Powell of the Society of Jesus – Why Am I Afraid To Tell You Who I Am is filled with underlining and other notations from some past perplexed borrower. Still in print today and time for this copy to move on. Included the creepy clown picture for Mary…

gettin up when you are feeling down

Down in the Dumps

Getting up when you’re feeling down
A woman’s guide to overcoming and preventing depression
Braiker
1988

Okay, I think we can agree that a book on depression from 1988 is not going to be a helpful choice for a patron in 2020. Like many books from this time, the term depression was used in a less clinical way. Words like the “baby blues” or “feeling down” softened what could be a major depressive disorder. The feminist in me says, of course women are depressed, they have no help and no matter what choice they make with respect to food preparation, child rearing, work in the home, work out of the home, etc. No matter what choice a woman makes it will be criticized. Of course the result is depression and or wanting to kick someone’s ass. Add in the extra helpings of racism and sexism, it is a miracle that most women get up and go to work. (Rant over, thank you for listening.)

when living hurts cover

Teen Depression

When Living Hurts
Gordon
1994

This book is geared to teens facing depression. Because of the age, I would weed this without a second thought. Treatment of depression and other adolescent mental health issues are better understood today. In any material geared to teens and their parents, it is important that this material be as current as possible. Cultural references and technology can age a book very quickly, making it effectively inaccessible to those who need it.

chicken soup for the soul

Bitter Chicken Soup

Chicken Soup for the Soul
101 Stories to Open the Heart and Rekindle the Spirit
Canfield and Hansen
1993

Another title from Mary’s Swedish Death Cleaning Project

Why on earth I have this book is completely beyond me. As a librarian, this book and its 10 million incarnations, were everywhere. I developed a deep and abiding hate for this series. I remember the first couple that showed up. Not my jam, but patrons liked these books. Okay. I can appreciate this. I even had someone who wanted me to order every single one because they wanted to read them all. In order.

psychotherapy maze

Psychotherapy for the masses

Psycotherapy Maze
Ehrenberg and Ehrenberg
1986

This book is basically a consumer’s guide to finding a therapist. It’s not a bad idea for a book. This book should have been weeded by 1990. Any consumer guides have a limited shelf life, just by definition. Aside from the obvious information about resources and costs, the options in mental health counseling have also changed.  Good thing this book is “updated”.

Mary

Right Book, Right Time cover

Helping Children Cope

The Right Book, the Right Time: Helping Children Cope
Grindler, Stratton, and McKenna
1997

Submitter: Although over 20 years old this book is not necessarily awful; it just needs some serious updating. What really caught me was the media in the back. This was just weeded from a rural public library system. We do weeding on a schedule year-round, but this year our main location went hard at the adult non-fiction section, and came across gems like this. Again, not awful in concept, just awfully out-of-date.

cutting loose book

Mommy and Daddy Issues

Cutting Loose
An Adult Guide to Coming to Terms With Your Parents
Halpern
1976

Back in the day, transactional analysis was all the rage. I even had a college professor that spoke the “I’m okay, you’re okay” speak all the time. It was awful. Everything was a discussion of my inner child, ego, and id. I hated that class. You couldn’t ask this guy when a paper was due without enduring a mini psychotherapy session.