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. Bullying at School Can Take the Sunshine Out of Life

    Darlene and Lenette Doskoch Reprinted from "Schools" issue of Visions Journal, 2009, 5 (2), pp. 15-17 A daughter’s story Hi, my name is Lenette Doskoch and I have generalized anxiety disorder. I don’t know exactly what to write. Remembering what ...

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  2. 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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  3. 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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  4. 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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  5. Let’s Not Talk About It?

    Teaching teens about substance abuse Andy Sibbald Reprinted from "Schools" issue of Visions Journal, 2009, 5 (2), pp.14-15 In the 1990s, I worked as an alcohol and drug specialist in Inuit communities two to three air hours northeast of Yellowkn ...

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  6. Young, Bipolar and Addicted to OxyContin

    An insider’s perspective John Charles Hilderley Reprinted from "Opioids" issue of Visions Journal, 2018, 13 (3), p. 11 In 2000, when I was 18, I was prescribed OxyContin for two painful kidney problems. The drug was relatively new then. The firs ...

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  7. It Takes a Recovery-Ready Community to Keep Loved Ones Connected and Healthy

    And to Reduce the Harm from Substance Use Sherry Vaile Robinson Reprinted from "Opioids" issue of Visions Journal, 2018, 13 (3), p. 17 My son Tyler fatally overdosed on heroin laced with fentanyl in a friend’s hotel room on January 27, 2016. He ...

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  8. “It helped me forget”

    A young mother’s journey through loss—and finding hope Farren Whitford Reprinted from "Opioids" issue of Visions Journal, 2018, 13 (3), p. 23 Growing up, I lived with my mom until I was about 12 and then I moved in with my grandma (me and my ste ...

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