BROOKE SIEM

MENTAL HEALTH AND WELLNESS WRITER & CHEF

Brooke Siem was among the first generation of teens to be medicated with antidepressants. Fifteen years later, heavily depressed and still on the same set of drugs that she was prescribed as a teenager, an opportunity to travel around the world for a year dropped into her lap. After spending half her life—and her entire adult life—on antidepressants, she wondered: Who might I be without them? 

Five years after taking her last antidepressant and fully healed from what was once assumed to be lifelong depression, Brooke's mission is to share the story of what happened after she booked a one-way ticket to Malaysia and got off all the drugs, one by one by one by one by one. Unfurled against a global backdrop and her work as an award-winning chef, Brooke's story chronicles explosive and terrifying antidepressant withdrawal and the fight to manage the modern mental health system, all while demanding hope and forgiveness in the name of healing. 

COMING MAY 10, 2022

MAY CAUSE SIDE EFFECTS

"A heart-rending and tender memoir that will start conversations we urgently need to have. It’s moving and important.” — Johann Hari, author of New York Times and international bestseller Lost Connections: Uncovering the Real Causes of Depression—and the Unexpected Solutions

Brooke's memoir is now available for preorder wherever books are sold. 

May Cause Side Effects book
BrookeSiem
OTHER

WORK

In addition to her mental health advocacy work, Brooke is an award-winning chef, consultant, and writer. She is the research & development chef for Otherworld™, a Food Network "Chopped" champion, and co-author of the cookbook, Prohibition Bakery.  Her writing has been featured in The Washington Post, EatingWell Magazine, Esquire, Tasting Table, ButcherBox, and more.

AND SHE CREATED THE

FUCKIT BUCKET™

Ever the entrepreneur and always delighted by the phrase "Sometimes you have to chuck it in the fuck it bucket and move on," Brooke decided she wanted a little bucket charm to carry around that would help remind her to lighten up.

It didn't exist. So she made one!

Click here to get your own Fuckit Bucket™. 

PUBLISHED WORK & PROJECTS

imrs
I Took Antidepressants For Years. Getting Off Them was Horrific. 

I spent half my life on antidepressants. Today, I’m off the medication and feel all right.

Read the full piece on The Washington Post.

chopped_fan
What It’s Like to Compete On—and Win—Food Network's “Chopped.”

In the first three seconds of me cooking in the Chopped kitchen, I’m cursing like a drunk frat kid.

Read the full piece on Medium.

Blitztorte (1 of 4)
How I Uncovered a 70-Year Old Family Grudge Baked Into a Cake.

Learn to make the notorious and delicious "blitz torte" that wove four generations of women together in my family.

Read the full piece on EatingWell.

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What They Mean When They Talk About Stillness.

For the first time, our world has been erased of anticipation. 

Read the full piece on Change Your Mind, Change Your Life

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Flying Solo: What It's Really Like to Travel Alone.

What it's really like to travel the world alone…and the best places to do it

Read the full piece on Tasting Table.

The Grandmother Project
The Grandmother Project: Cooking around the world

Traveling all around the world and cooking with grandmothers along the way.

Read the full piece on EatingWell.

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