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Monday 22 September 2014

Lena Dunham charts childhood riddled with anxiety in memoir

Published 27/08/2014 | 10:52

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Lena Dunham at the 66th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards
Lena Dunham at the 66th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards

She's just 28 years-old but 'Girls' writer Lena Dunham is releasing a memoir next month, in which she charts a childhood riddled with anxiety.

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The first excerpt from her memoir, Not That Kind of Girl, were published by the New Yorker earlier this week and reveal the extent of her troubles.

She begins, "I am eight, and I am afraid of everything. The list of things that keep me up at night includes but is not limited to: appendicitis, typhoid, leprosy, unclean meat, foods I haven’t seen emerge from their packaging, foods my mother hasn’t tasted first so that if we die we die together, homeless people, headaches, rape, kidnapping, milk, the subway, sleep."

Just one year later she started what would be years of therapy in an effort to alleviate her incessant worrying.

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"The germophobia morphs into hypochondria morphs into sexual anxiety morphs into the pain and angst that accompany entry into middle school," she writes.

"Over time, Lisa and I develop a shorthand for things I'm too embarrassed to say: 'masturbation' becomes 'M', 'sexuality' becomes 'ooality', and my crushes become 'him'."

Not That Kind of Girl reportedly bagged Dunham a whopping $3.5m (€2.6m) advance.

Acclaimed young adult writer Judy Blume endorsed the book with the statement, 'Always funny, sometimes wrenching".

Writing on her website, Dunham says she hopes that reading about her upheavals in life might help fans to avoid making the same mistakes.

"If I can take what I've learned in this life and make one treacherous relationship or degrading job easier for you, perhaps even prevent you from becoming temporarily vegan, then every misstep of mine will have been worthwhile," she said.

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