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. A Big, Strong Man

    Spencer McDonald Reprinted from "Men" issue of Visions Journal, 2005, 2(5), p. 17 Life is good. I run my own company, give talks on workplace depression to business leaders, and appear on radio and TV. But it wasn't always that way. I' ...

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  2. Sometimes Only on One Wing

    Life and illness over a 40-year span Rhea Alexander Reprinted from "Seniors" issue of Visions Journal, 2002, 1(15), pp. 26-27 My name is Rhea. I was born in Fort St. John in 1933. I've spent most of my life here in Fort St. John with my par ...

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  3. Parenting and Social Work

    A route to recovery Kathryn Lestage, BSW Reprinted from "Parenting" issue of Visions Journal, 2004, 2(2), pp. 17-18 My story begins in 1985. I am 21 years old. Since high school, I have spent two precious years of good mental health attending co ...

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  4. And the Cement Cracked and Crumbled Away

    Rosalyn Reprinted from "Stigma" issue of Visions Journal, 2005, 2(5), pp. 25-26 It was April: the season of rebirth. I stepped out of the hospital and into the sunlight, suddenly aware that I was no longer wearing a puke-coloured gown and dispos ...

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  5. Bingeing and the Blues

    Victoria Maxwell Reprinted from "Women" issue of Visions Journal, 2004, 2(4), pp. 28-29 I'm not picky. I'll mainline sugar, carbs and fats in any form — ideally alternating between scoops of Snow Star Neapolitan ice cream and thick chu ...

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  6. My Path to Wellness

    From psychotic depression to recovery Debbie Sesula Reprinted from "Self-Management" issue of Visions Journal, 2003, 1(18), pp. 22-23 Part 1: Enslaved by Mental Illness The year is 1988. I was just your average university student struggling thro ...

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  7. Holding on While Letting Go

    The contradictions of teenage mental illness Pam Reprinted from "Families" issue of Visions Journal, 2004, 2(3), pp. 20-21 Our 16 year-old son had just emerged from his bedroom. For most of the day, he had been agitated and uncommunicative. At o ...

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  8. Living with Depression

    Dena Lea Reprinted from "Mood Disorders" issue of Visions Journal, 2000, 1(11), p. 8 Have you ever tried to put on a happy face when you weren't feeling bright and cheery? Because of the nature of depression, it took me years to get into tr ...

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  9. My Daughter is my Guardian Angel

    The joy of a new child might not always feel so joyful Donna Lea Zwick Reprinted in "Mood Disorders" issue of Visions Journal, 2000, 1(11), p. 15 Four months after my second child, a daughter, was born, I strolled along the boardwalk of Stevesto ...

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  10. Interview with Pete Wentz from halfofus.com

    Pete Wentz Web-only article from "Campuses" issue of Visions Journal, 2008, 4 (3) Beginnings I started doing music when I was about fourteen, and it got serious actually when I transferred into DePaul and I found myself, you know, with like, not ...

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