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. Break's Over!

    Lyle Richardson Reprinted from "Tobacco" issue of Visions Journal, 2007, 3 (4), p. 18 A close friend recently said to me: “Lyle, if I know you at all, you’re smoking because you’re bored.” She knew me before I was diagnosed with schizophrenia—in ...

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  2. Too Proud to Ask for Help

    And not knowing when to ask Ian Chovil Reprinted from "Men" issue of Visions Journal, 2005, 2(5), p. 26 I had an insidious onset of schizophrenia that progressed for nine years. It was so gradual that I lost all my human relationships without an ...

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  3. A Tale of Dysfunctional Child-rearing

    Frank G. Sterle, Jr. Reprinted from "Parenting" issue of Visions Journal, 2004, 2(2), p. 24 I always say: too many people who make dysfunctional parents have the most children; meanwhile, many people who might make the best parents decide to liv ...

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  4. When Expectations Crumble

    A mother’s look at her son’s university experience I.B.* Reprinted from "Campuses" issue of Visions Journal, 2007, 4 (3), pp. 16-17 When going to university is all you’ve ever wanted and it doesn’t work out, it can be devastating. The loss of pr ...

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  5. The Mind Shaft

    Suzannah Kelly Reprinted from "Campuses" issue of Visions Journal, 2007, 4 (3), pp. 18-19 You’d be amazed at the places I’ve puked. Like a junkie knowing the hit that caused rock bottom, I remember my worst purge. Something shifted. I’d been loo ...

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  6. From Cutting to Creating Change on My Campus

    Amanda Pierce Reprinted from "Campuses" issue of Visions Journal, 2007, 4 (3), pp. 20-21 Then I used to cut myself. Daily. Sometimes several times a day. It started in the fifth grade. I felt worthless and ugly, inside and out. I felt as though ...

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  7. 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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  8. An Unexpected Education

    What I really learned in university Tamsin Bosko* Web-only article from "Campuses" issue of Visions Journal, 2008, 4 (3) As a young child, I was terrorized by disaster scenarios running through my head—getting run over by a speeding truck Roadru ...

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  9. "Cowboy Dave"

    Just one story from the Cariboo streets Wayne Lucier Reprinted from "Aboriginal People" issue of Visions Journal, 2008, 5 (1), pp. 16-17 My day usually starts with bringing coffee to the people who gather behind Lake City Ford, a common meeting ...

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  10. Everything Is Related

    Unemployment, mental health and addiction—and the need for cooperative action Andy Sibbald Reprinted from "Aboriginal" issue of Visions Journal, 2008, 5 (1), pp. 12-14 I lived and worked in the addictions field in Nunavut, the Northwest Territor ...

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