What happens when you’re the best at something you hate?

Jennette McCurdy had the money, fame and fanbase. And, like any child actor, the support of her mother. But it came with conditions.


Simon & Schuster

“I’m Glad My Mom Died” was published on Aug. 9, 2022 by Jennette McCurdy. McCurdy is a writer, director, podcaster, singer and former actress.

Abby Lincks, Editor

In I’m Glad My Mom Died, Jennette McCurdy reflects on her eating disorders, alcohol addiction and complicated relationship with her mother. Her memories surround the pivotal moment of her mother’s death, when she’s “finally down to eighty-nine pounds,” marking a definitive before and after. 

McCurdy’s entire life has revolved around the expectations of her mother- what she eats, how she dresses, how she bathes, who she talks to, if she has sex, how she acts and the money she spends. It all depends on mommy dearest. But when her mother dies of bone cancer in 2013, she’s forced to encounter all her struggles and triumphs alone. Her final realization- maybe it’s better this way.

McCurdy’s life seems like one big audition after another. And, it’s not just for iCarly or Sam & Cat. It’s an endless game of how-to. How do I please her? How do I lose weight to make her happy? How do I become the actress she was never able to be? How do I never, ever disappoint her? It’s no wonder McCurdy was a great actress. She’s been acting all her life, literally. 

I’m Glad My Mom Died is a story of finding freedom. McCurdy exquisitely writes her escape from the suffocation of control under her mom into self actualization. She replaces binging, purging and alcohol, everything that’s distracting her from reality, with therapy and exploration of self, after years of assimilation. 

In an episode of “Armchair Expert with Dax Shepard,” McCurdy discusses the motive behind writing her memoir in first person point of view. In third person, she gets wistful, nostalgic and poetic. She “hates when I [she] goes there,” hoping to achieve a humorous, relaxed tone by writing in present tense. And, she does. 

Her writing is sarcastic and raw without incessant pessimism, despite its gutsy title. McCurdy reflects on her mother’s pride on her most special skill-crying on cue. Her child acting days were full of hysteria and tears, critique and false eyelashes. As a teen, uncomfortable conversation with The Creator and bikini try-ons for Nickelodeon, not to mention 300k hush money. If not for the phoenix rising from the ashes type plot, then read it for McCurdy’s brave account of corruption and exploitation surrounding the child acting scene, specific to Nickelodeon. 

But, McCurdy refuses to perform any longer or act out lines prescribed to her. Now, she writes her own. And, you should listen.