Elizabeth Wurtzel has died, aged 52. The Prozac Nation author who ushered in an era of worldwide depression and mental health awareness has been confirmed dead by NBC News, also confirmed by Elizabeth's husband.
Wurtzel had breast cancer, announcing that she had the disease back in 2015. Elizabeth's husband, Jim Freed, stated that the cancer had spread to his wife's brain.
No further details have been released, although fellow writers and fans have already taken to social media to offer their condolensces.
'I Have Cancer. Don't Tell Me You're Sorry': That Opinion Piece
Wurtzel chose to address her cancer diagnosis in a unique way. 2018 saw Wurtzel publish an opinion piece in The Guardian.
"I hate it when people say that they are sorry about my cancer.
Have they met me? I am not someone that you feel sorry for. I am the original mean girl.
I now have stage-four upgrade privileges. I can go right to the front. But it’s always been like this.
I am a line-cutter.
Which is to say, I was precocious. I was early for history," she wrote.
Put Prozac On The Map
Prozac may now be a normal part of casual (or not so casual) conversation, but it wasn't always. Largely considered responsible for the open-minded way in which depression is discussed, Wurtzel and her ground-breaking 1994 novel broke down barriers.
In 2001, Wurtzel's book was made into a movie.
"I was on Prozac when it was still called fluoxetine. I wrote a twentynothing memoir when there was no such thing. I got addicted to snorting Ritalin before there was Adderall. I was a riot girl, I was a do-me feminist, and I posed topless giving the world the finger on the cover of my second book," Elizabeth wrote in the above-mentioned The Guardian piece.
Tributes Have Been Pouring In
Journalist Ronan Farrow remembered the writer as a child.
"I met Lizzie in law school. She started mid-career as I was starting young," Farrow tweeted. "We were both misfits and she was kind and generous and filled spaces that might have otherwise been lonely with her warmth and humor and idiosyncratic voice. She gave a lot to a lot of us. I miss her," he tweeted.
Wurtzel also authored Bitch: In Praise of Difficult Women, alongside her memoir More, Now, Again: A Memoir of Addiciton. She suffered from atypical depression, also battling substance abuse. Wurtzel was prescribed popular anti-depressant Prozac (fluoxetine) before it was the go-to drug of choice.
Mental Health: Now An Open Subject? Lady Gaga, Selena Gomez, And More
The modern day now seems a million miles off the hush-hush vibe of decades past. Celebrities are now open regarding their mental health, although many are likely still wary of opening up.
Just recently, Lady Gaga revealed that her Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) was a result of "repeated rape."
Demi Lovato called herself a "fighter" following the 2019 drug overdose that nearly claimed her life. From Selena Gomez to Brad Pitt, Hollywood's faces have been speaking out. Elizabeth? She was before her time.