Personal Stories

Personal stories highlight the experiences of people just like you. You’ll find stories from people who experience mental health or substance use problems, people who support a loved one, and people who work in mental health or substance use fields. They share their own experiences and perspectives, and describe their personal journeys to understanding, health and well-being.

Personal stories highlight hope and well-being, not treatment advice. Check out the Self-Help Resources section of this site for info sheet and workbooks, and talk to your doctor or health care provider to discuss treatment options that might be a good fit for you.

  1. From Thrills to Ills

    Why smoking pot is risky business Geoffrey Griffiths Reprinted from "Cannabis" issue of Visions Journal, 2009, 5 (4), p. 14  I started smoking pot when I was 13. I was not a happy camper as a kid. School was misery right from the start. I had gr ...

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  2. Cannabis and My Road to Healing

    Kerry Porth Reprinted from "Cannabis" issue of Visions Journal, 2009, 5 (4), p. 16 I was one of those children who simply “fell under the radar”—no one knew I was unwell. I was sexually abused as a child and have suffered from post-traumatic str ...

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  3. Cannabis and Me

    A cautionary tale Anita Smith Reprinted from "Cannabis" issue of Visions Journal, 2009, 5 (4), p. 17  In January 1998, when I was 27, I began hearing voices. The first voices I heard told me they were going to kill me. I literally ran out of the ...

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  4. Marijuana

    Help or hassle? Emily Smith* Reprinted from "Cannabis" issue of Visions Journal, 2009, 5 (4), p. 20 I’ve been a nurse for a very long time, in acute and long-term care, public health and health education for professionals and non-professionals o ...

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  5. Should We Have Been More Aware? A mother and son share their story

    How cannabis changed my life Matt* Reprinted from "Cannabis" issue of Visions Journal, 2009, 5 (4), p. 22 It started in the summer before high school. I mysteriously developed strange vibrations in my neck and head that caused pain and headaches ...

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  6. Alternatives: Miracle Marijuana

    Michelle Rainey Reprinted from "Cannabis" issue of Visions Journal, 2009, 5 (4), p. 19 At the tender age of 15 I started to experience severe stomach pain, nausea, cramping and diarrhea; a cycle that, I didn’t know then, would repeat my whole li ...

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  7. Should We Have Been More Aware? A mother and son share their story

    Epilogue: Mom’s view Gina* Web-only article from "Cannabis" issue of Visions Journal, 2009, 5 (4) All those cliché sentiments about high school being the “best years of your life”—well, the opposite has been true for my son. Imagine navigating h ...

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