Thank You, Joanna Litt: A Response From a Lawyer Assistance Program (The American Lawyer)
The American Lawyer, November 15, 2018
Thank You, Joanna Litt: A Response From a Lawyer Assistance Program
By Eileen Travis, Director, New York City Bar Association’s Lawyer Assistance Program
“Everyone who cares about the legal profession and mental health issues should read Joanna Litt’s heartbreaking essay in The American Lawyer about her husband’s suicide. In ‘Big Law Killed My Husband,’ Joanna recounts how the stress that her husband, Gabe MacConaill, was going through at work became too much for him given the mental health issues he was grappling with. ‘I know ‘Big Law’ didn’t directly kill my husband,’ Joanna acknowledges, ‘because he had a deep, hereditary mental health disorder and lacked essential coping mechanisms. But these influences, coupled with a high-pressure job and a culture where it’s shameful to ask for help, shameful to be vulnerable, and shameful not to be perfect, created a perfect storm.’”
The New York City Bar Association’s Lawyer Assistance Program (LAP) and LAPs across the country provide free, confidential assistance to lawyers, judges, law students and their families who are struggling with mental health, alcohol and substance abuse problems. For 24/7 help in New York, call 212.302.5787.