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 Triple Threat

    Workplace isolation, West Coast grey and the "black dog" Gwen Marsh Reprinted from "Workplaces" issue of Visions Journal, 2009, 5 (3), pp. 15-16 It was supposed to be an ideal solution. My husband had a new job in a new city. I could k ...

    read more
  2. Return to Work

    Ready or not? Karen Six Web-only article from "Workplaces" issue of Visions Journal, 2009, 5 (3) How long is this gonna take?” I wailed, sobbing so hard that snorts and bubbles of mucus and tears choked and blinded me. “I’m never going to be bac ...

    read more
  3. When Life's Demands Take Their Toll

    Changeways for depression Pat Merrett Reprinted from "CBT" issue of Visions Journal, 2009, 6 (1), p. 14   My husband Joe couldn’t figure out why this was happening. He was 58 years old and was sitting in the backyard crying. And it wasn’t the fi ...

    read more
  4. Through Sickness and Health

    A wife's account of her husband's mood disorder Sarah Hamid-Balma Reprinted from "Seniors" issue of Visions Journal, 2002, 1(15), pp. 19-20 Verne Smithman, 76, of Langley is proof that depression can strike any gender and any age. In t ...

    read more
  5. Life Through Depression- Depression Through Life

    Ken Lam, as told to Stephanie Wilson Reprinted from "Immigrants and Refugees" issue of Visions Journal, 2010, 6 (3), p. 14 I was born in 1932, in Hong Kong. I have two older brothers, one younger brother and one younger sister. My father had a s ...

    read more
  6. Postpartum Depression—Fathers Get Hit By It Too

    Albert* Reprinted from "Having a Baby" issue of Visions Journal, 2012, 7 (3), pp. 14-15 At the hospital, Jeanne spent a whole night coping with the pain of labour. After 17 hours of labour, the baby had moved into a dangerous position, and Jeann ...

    read more
  7. The Weight On My Shoulders—And When It Lifted

    Gail Johnson Reprinted from "Having a Baby" issue of Visions Journal, 2012, 7 (3), pp. 19-20 When I was pregnant with my first child, I’d never been happier. Although I’d always been prone to anxiety, I’d overcome much of it by the time I met my ...

    read more
  8. Aligning Values and Notions of Self-Worth

    For Harley, taking time off work turned into a year off work, but it was a busy year of therapy and counselling groups, medication trials, treatments and reading. Through this work, he realized that his values and sources of his self-worth didn’t match. L ...

    read more
  9. Limitations and Complexities of my Self-Management

    Sarah Hamid-Balma Reprinted from "Self-Management" issue of Visions Journal, 2003, 1 (18), pp. 15-16 I recently learned that my mental disorder (unipolar depression) will be a life-long battle. It was hard to hear, after seven years on medicatio ...

    read more