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. The Mad Muslim

    A South Asian, East African, Middle Eastern perspective on mental illness, abuse and family Farah Tejani, BA, MFA Reprinted from "Families" issue of Visions Journal, 2004, 2(3), pp. 24-26 With culture comes thousands of unwritten rules and regul ...

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  2. The Consuming Beast

    Michael Catney The "beast" has controlled my life for most of the last 10 years. Sure, there were times of clarity, where I could function normally—hold a job, date, enjoy friends, feel as if I was a contributing member of society and not just a ...

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  3. Why Did This Happen?

    Witnessing tragedy Brian Chittock, DBA, CFRE Reprinted from "Trauma and Victimization" issue of Visions Journal, 2007, 3 (3), pp. 16-17 Vancouver's Celebration of Light fireworks festival will never be the same for me again. The memories I ...

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  4. Combat and Rescue

    Breeding grounds for PTSD Atholl Malcolm, CD1, PhD, RPsych Reprinted from "Trauma and Victimization" issue of Visions Journal, 2007, 3 (3), pp. 17-19 From 1964 to the early ’80s, I was an air navigator/tactical officer in the Canadian Forces. I ...

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  5. When the One Responding to Traumas Faces His Own

    A paramedic's story Richard Voigt Reprinted from "Trauma and Victimization" issue of Visions Journal, 2007, 3 (3), pp. 19-20 Surreal My journey into the world of mental illness started in February 2000 with an ambulance call that should hav ...

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  6. Life After Death

    Troy* Web-only article from "Trauma and Victimization" issue of Visions Journal, 2007, 3 (3) My father died when I was eight years old. All I can remember is crying for two weeks straight. Going to school during this time was out of the question ...

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  7. Banishing the Shame From My Life

    Ron Nunn Reprinted from "Aboriginal People" issue of Visions Journal, 2008, 5 (1), pp. 17-18 As a Métis man with bipolar illness, I have worn a mantle of shame—a sackcloth of self-loathing, fear of exposure and a deep sense of failure—for most o ...

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  8. Weathering the Storms

    A family's journey through earthquakes, loss and bullying Shabana* Web-only article from "Schools" issue of Visions Journal, 2009, 5 (2) Loss upon loss When I inherited the care of two beautiful young girls entering their teenage years, I h ...

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  9. A Tainted Son

    Ganesh loved to hear his grandmother talk about her childhood in Sri Lanka. But it took years to tell his grandmother about the abuse from his mother that he experienced through his own childhood. While his extended family told Ganesh to ‘tough it out,’ h ...

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  10. Escaping an Abusive Home

    My journey of self-exploration Jasmine Rakhra Reprinted from "Young People: Transitions" issue of Visions Journal, 2015, 11 (2), pp. 13-16 Grade 12 is a pivotal year, as students have to make decisions about what to do after high school, whether ...

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