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. Earl Joe's Story

    Donna Panitow Reprinted from "Aboriginal" issue of Visions Journal, 2008, 5 (1), pp. 14-15 This story is extracted, with Earl Joe’s permission, from the full-length interview with Earl Joe that was used for making the DVD Aboriginal Journeys in ...

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  2. 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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  3. Once Upon a Time in the Big City

    Kristine Sinclair Reprinted from "Aboriginal People" issue of Visions Journal, 2008, 5 (1), pp. 19-20 A smart girl, but... Growing up, I was always one of the good kids. Top student, perfect attendance, math awards, honour roll. I graduated earl ...

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  4. My School Years

    The wild ride from basements to bikes Chris Reprinted from "Schools" issue of Visions Journal, 2009, 5 (2), pp. 10-11 Much of my life has been a wild ride into mental illness—and a climb out of it. It’s a ride I’m still on and will continue on u ...

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  5. To Tell or Not to Tell?

    The question of disclosure Caris Smythe* Reprinted from "Schools" issue of Visions Journal, 2009, 5 (2), pp. 30-31 I’ve always believed that to combat stigma we need to discuss mental health issues openly. This has been the credo by which I’ve l ...

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  6. Let's Not Talk About It?

    Teaching teens about substance abuse Andy Sibbald Reprinted from "Schools" issue of Visions Journal, 2009, 5(2), pp. 14-15 In the 1990s, I worked as an alcohol and drug specialist in Inuit communities two to three air hours northeast of Yellowkn ...

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  7. Bullying at School Can Take the Sunshine Out of Life

    Darlene and Lenette Doskoch Reprinted from "Schools" issue of Visions Journal, 2009, 5 (2), pp. 15-17 A daughter’s story Hi, my name is Lenette Doskoch and I have generalized anxiety disorder. I don’t know exactly what to write. Remembering what ...

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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. Educating Youth About Mental Illness

    Shelby Rankel Web-only article from "Schools" issue of Visions Journal, 2009, 5 (2) My story I have struggled with mental illness since I was eight years old. For a long time I didn’t even know I had a mental illness. I just thought I had a ‘pro ...

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  10. A Little Help From My Friend

    The role of unions when a worker has an addiction problem Jude Morrison Reprinted from "Workplaces" issue of Visions Journal, 2009, 5 (3), p. 11 I never thought much about issues of mental illness or addictions in the workplace until I began wor ...

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