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Mental Health Month Spotlight: Sarah McLachlan

There are very few things I place above really good music.

Sure, there’s the essential stuff like food, water, air, family, friends, and God – but, aside from those, there are very few, if any, things I place above really good music.

Those of you who know me know that I’m more than a bit obsessed with Dave Matthews Band.

Actually, the music’s not so much an obsession as it is a way of life for me. If I handed you a time line of my life, complete with every high, low, and in-between moment, you could point to any period and I’d be able to tell you which DMB song carried me through it.

Hmm…maybe I am obsessed.

Music is therapeutic, but DMB’s stuff is in a league of its own.

Anyway, what I don’t talk about as often is that much of Sarah McLachlan’s music has a similar therapeutic effect for me. Fumbling Towards Ecstasy was pretty much my relationship soundtrack back in the 90s and the album that inspired a lot of my own writing back then.

Aside from helping to heal my former teenaged self’s heart, Sarah McLachlan also…

  • Won three Grammy Awards.
  • Won eight of the 21 Juno Awards she’s been nominated for.
  • Founded Lilith Fair (which is coming back in 2010).
  • Was recognized for advancing the careers of women in music with a Elizabeth Cady Stanton Visionary Award.
  • Was appointed an Officer of the Order of Canada.
  • Was inducted to the Order of British Columbia.
  • Helps fund Sarah McLachlan Music Outreach, a free music program for Vancouver’s inner-city kids, as well as the The Sarah McLachlan Foundation which underwrites music education programs for kids throughout Canada.

And, Psychology Today lists Sarah McLachlan as a celebrity who’s struggled with depression.

That doesn’t surprise me. Sure, I don’t know Sarah McLachlan, but one listen to the raw, deeply emotional songs on Fumbling Towards Ecstasy alone makes it pretty easy to tell the writer – McLachlan – might have had some depression-related issues going on.

Pretty inspiring to see someone who’s grappled with the Black Dog and still achieved so many successes – not just personal successes, but successes that’ve reached out to millions – yes?

I certainly think so.

Image Credit: Anthony Quintano via Wikipedia

Mental Health Month Spotlight: Sarah McLachlan

Alicia Sparks

Alicia Sparks is a freelance writer and editor and the creator of, where she blogs to help new freelance writers get their quills in the pot, so to speak. Among animal rights, music, and physical wellness, her passions include mental health and advocacy. Here at Psych Central she works as Syndication Editor as well as authors Your Body, Your Mind, Unleash Your Creativity, and World of Psychology's weekly "Psychology Around the Net."

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APA Reference
Sparks, A. (2016). Mental Health Month Spotlight: Sarah McLachlan. Psych Central. Retrieved on September 22, 2020, from


Last updated: 18 Aug 2016
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