About This Book:
She wanted to die. God had other plans.
Why does my life have to be so painful?
What’s wrong with me?
It’s not going to get better.
It could all be over soon, and then I won’t hurt anymore.
Kristen Anderson thought she had the picture-perfect life until strokes of gray dimmed her outlook: three friends and her grandmother died within two years. Still reeling from these losses, she was raped by a friend she thought she could trust. She soon spiraled into a seemingly bottomless depression.
One January night, the seventeen-year-old decided she no longer wanted to deal with the emotional pain that smothered her. She lay down on a set of cold railroad tracks and waited for a freight train to send her to heaven…and peace.
But Kristen's story doesn’t end there.
In Life, In Spite of Me this remarkably joyful young woman shares the miracle of her survival, the agonizing aftermath of her failed suicide attempt, and the hope that has completely transformed her life, giving her a powerful purpose for living.
Her gripping story of finding joy against all odds provides a vivid and unforgettable reminder that life is a gift to be treasured.
Includes notes of encouragement Kristen wishes she had received when she was struggling most.
“Life, In Spite of Me is a remarkable story of life beyond despair and hope that triumphs over tragedy.”
—Louie Giglio, pastor, Passion City Church/The Passion Movement
“Suicide is a liar and a thief. It promises peace to those who are escaping but delivers unimaginable pain and rejection to those left behind. Kristen Jane Anderson’s riveting story unmasks the thief and gives hope a face.”
—Dr. Dennis Rainey, president, FamilyLife Ministries
“When I first met Kristen, I was overwhelmed with her smile, and then I saw her wheelchair. It was a defining moment for me. I had not heard her story or why she’d ended up at Moody. But it was her smile—and it is still her smile—that dismantles me. Kristen has something. It is something otherworldly. She had every reason to die, but now she has every reason to live. I hope you’ll read her story, see her smile, and know why she lives.”
—Michael Easley, former president, Moody Bible Institute
Life, in Spite of Me is a memoir-type book which I found very inspiring and insightful. I got a bit choked up several times, especially at the scene that described Kristen's baptism, because of how much her newly-changed life positively affected her family. This book was well-written and courageous. I loved the parts that read like a novel, such as when she remembered the past events leading up to the night she laid on the tracks. I also loved how detailed the story was regarding the aftermath and healing that took place once her legs were gone. Sometimes people don't realize how good things are until they no longer have them...like being able to walk. Life looks completely different from a wheelchair. This book showed that very well.
I admire this author for laying her heart out there for people to see. I really love the way Kristen is using her painful past and healing journey to inspire others. I understood her testimony regarding no longer needing anti-depressants, but I also have concerns about people with true clinical depression reading this and thinking that they, too, can stop taking their medication. I cringe to think of people trying it without seeking help from a professional, which Kristen thankfully did in her story. I'm glad she mentioned that she didn't do it alone. Some people truly do need medication for life...even Christians who love Jesus. Also, the fatal choice wording in the title is technically not true. It should be near-fatal choice, because she is clearly not dead. I am grateful for that, or this book wouldn't exist. God clearly saved her life for a divine purpose. Other than the above issue, this was a wonderful and inspirational book that I'm sure will help many people for years to come.