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My Lesbian Experience With Loneliness - Book Review

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by Marisa Quinn-Haisu (subscribe)
My name is Marisa. I am a fiction writer, a blogger, and a freelance journalist.
Published May 10th 2018
A heartbreaking memoir about mental health and sexuality
My Lesbian Experience with Loneliness
Kabi Nagata


My Lesbian Experience with Loneliness is an autobiographical manga written and illustrated by Kabi Nagata about her struggles with her mental health and coming to terms with her sexuality.

It was originally self-published by Nagata on an online community for Japanese artists called Pixiv under the title The Private Report on My Lesbian Experience with Loneliness. It gained traction online and was later republished as a single volume in Japan in 2016 by East Press. It was translated into English the following year and released in the English speaking market by Seven Seas Entertainment.

Nagata got the idea to write My Lesbian Experience with Loneliness after battling with depression and struggling to find and hold down a job. She finally decided to do manga full time after it was suggested to her during a job interview that it was her real passion after her eyes lit up when she started talking about it.

Her decision to do manga caused some stress for Nagata, who felt that by choosing to do what would make her happy she was disappointing her parents by not getting a salaried job and was not being the "good" daughter that they wanted her to be. Her choice to pursue manga proved to be the right one for her mental health. It helped with her depression and gave Nagata a reason to get out of bed in the morning.

Nagata got the idea to use her private life as inspiration for a manga. She started writing down her experiences in the form of a list and started thinking about how she could spin it all into a narrative. In her story she is honest about herself and her failings in life, she doesn't glorify her mental illness, and she is open about her insecurities and the negative feelings that she has about herself.

When Nagata decides to visit a lesbian escort agency, it is the start of a positive change in her life. She begins bathing, shaving her arms and legs and armpits regularly, and she stops wearing clothes with holes in them and starts changing her clothes and underwear daily.

Once she starts taking care of herself better, she starts noticing that her relationships with other people start improving, because she is no longer depending on others for everything. Nagata finally feels like smiling and has a happier skip in her step. She is doing something for herself and it feels great.

My Lesbian Experience with Loneliness is a story about finding the courage to be yourself and to be comfortable in your own skin. Nagata has written an excellent story that will appeal to women and to people in the LGBTQ community.
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Why? My Lesbian Experience with Loneliness is an autobiographical manga by Kabi Nagata that chronicles her experiences with growing up and struggling to cope with her mental health issues and burgeoning sexuality.
When: The book is small and would fit neatly into a backpack or handbag
Where: Available from your local bookstore or online retailer
Cost: $16 - $24.99
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