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. View From the Ruin

    Julianne Kim Reprinted from "Social Support" issue of Visions Journal, 2011, 6(4), p. 11 I came to Canada in 1975 from Seoul, South Korea. I was 19 and too full of bravado to admit anything of the pain, fear and anxiety I felt. I was anxious all ...

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  2. My Portfolio of Support

    Ian Chovil Reprinted from "Social Support" issue of Visions Journal 2011, 6 (4), p. 14 In the beginning My onset of schizophrenia was what is called “insidious,” meaning a gradual onset of symptoms. For me, this occurred from ages 17 to 25 (betw ...

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  3. It’s Okay to Ask for Help

    Robin Rebeiro Reprinted from "Social Support" issue of Visions Journal, 2011, 6 (4), p. 17 I’ve always considered myself a strong person emotionally. The idea of asking for help made me feel that I was somehow weak, and this was a side of myself ...

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  4. Nurture over Nature

    Relearning that sharing feelings is healthy Rodney Baker, MA, CPRP Reprinted from "Men" issue of Visions Journal, 2005, 2(5), pp. 22-23 Guys are supposed to know stuff! When I kissed my very first date goodnight, I got a nasty shock. She made an ...

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  5. Fatherhood, Mental Illness and the River of Humankind

    Bruce Saunders Reprinted from "Parenting" issue of Visions Journal, 2004, 2(2), pp. 19-20 Ten years ago, as my young son was grappling with the revelation that his dad struggles with manic depression, things took a surprising twist. As we were p ...

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  6. Family Peer Support

    A vital role in system navigation Moira Hazlehurst Reprinted from "System Navigation" issue of Visions Journal, 2014, 10 (1), p. 18-20 I’m a Parent in Residence (PiR) with The FORCE Society for Kids’ Mental Health (see sidebar). A PiR is a paren ...

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  7. My Journey from Foster Care to Social Work

    Jordanna Southall, BSW Reprinted from "Young People: Transitions" issue of Visions Journal, 2015, 11 (2), pp. 17-19 What got me through foster care and has led to my success was having a strong support system through thick and thin. I developed ...

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  8. Health Literacy — A Family Member's Perspective

    Patti Outram Reprinted from "Health Literacy" issue of Visions Journal, 2013, 8 (2), pp.15-16 I began to co-facilitate Strengthening Families in 2006 after I lost my brother Ted to suicide in November. Do I ever wish I’d taken the program long a ...

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