Hemingway opens up about her family’s struggles at CFH Luncheon

She’s the granddaughter of one of America’s most beloved authors, grew up in the afterglow of Hollywood’s bright lights and created a successful acting career of her own. By most accounts, Mariel Hemingway has lived a charmed life. But beyond the glitz and glamour, Hemingway wrestled with the emotional burden associated with her famous family’s struggles with mental illness and substance abuse.

During her remarks at the Center for HOPE Luncheon on April 8, Hemingway said her family’s tragedies were instrumental in shaping her own life. Along with the suicides of her grandfather, Ernest, and sister, Margaux, Hemingway also dealt with her own obsessive behavior.

“We all have a story and when we do tell our story, we can find a place with people we can trust,” she told an audience of more than 200 at the Country Club of Darien. “It’s the beginning of getting proper health.”

In her new book, “Out Came the Sun”, Hemingway speaks candidly about her dysfunctional upbringing. While often tragic, Hemingway aims to use her story of survival to show that positivity and balance can be attained. As a result of her family’s struggles, Hemingway has become an outspoken advocate for those coping with mental illness.

The Luncheon, co-chaired Barbara Epifanio of Darien, Heather Pech of Darien and Terri Walker of Rowayton, raised more than $100,000 for the Center for HOPE and The Den for Grieving Kids – Family Centers’ critical illness and bereavement support programs.

Family Centers is a private, nonprofit organization offering education and human services to children, adults and families in Fairfield County. More than 3,000 professionals and trained volunteers work together to provide a wide range of responsive, innovative programs. A United Way, Community Fund of Darien and New Canaan Community Foundation partner agency, Family Centers is a member of the Connecticut Council of Family Service Agencies and the Alliance for Children and Families and is accredited by the Council on Accreditation (COA) and the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC). The agency is licensed by the State of Connecticut Departments of Public Health and Children and Families. Visit www.familycenters.org or www.facebook.com/familycentersinc for additional information.

Center for HOPE Luncheon Co-chairs (l-r) with Mariel Hemingway (2nd from right): Heather Pech, Barbara Epifanio and Terri Walker

Center for HOPE Luncheon Co-chairs (l-r) with Mariel Hemingway (2nd from right): Heather Pech, Barbara Epifanio and Terri Walker

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