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. Beyond Cleaning Up Your Own Barf

    Kelli Hewins Reprinted from "Campuses" issue of Visions Journal, 2007, 4 (3), pp. 11-12 Giving my head a shake A couple of weeks ago a friend I met at my workplace returned from a trip with a small gift for me. She said the item reminded her of ...

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  2. Kwantlen Counsellors

    Encountering a new wave of student mental health difficulties Wendy Belter, MA, CCC Reprinted from "Campuses" issue of Visions Journal, 2007, 4 (3), pp. 14-15 I am a counsellor at the Surrey Campus of Kwantlen University College, a multi-campus ...

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  3. Young, Bipolar and Addicted to OxyContin

    An insider’s perspective John Charles Hilderley Reprinted from "Opioids" issue of Visions Journal, 2018, 13 (3), p. 11 In 2000, when I was 18, I was prescribed OxyContin for two painful kidney problems. The drug was relatively new then. The firs ...

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  4. How Did We End Up Here?

    Holding on through a close friend’s opioid addiction Astrid* Reprinted from "Opioids" issue of Visions Journal, 2018, 13 (3), p. 14 It was 4:00 on a Friday evening, about 24 hours since anyone had last seen Gwen. She had been given the opportuni ...

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  5. Living a Good Life—With or Without Opioids

    It all comes down to decent, safe housing Al Fowler Reprinted from "Opioids" issue of Visions Journal, 2018, 13 (3), p. 17 I first started using heroin in the late 90s. I was in Matsqui Penitentiary, so it was just a way to get high and escape r ...

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  6. It Takes a Recovery-Ready Community to Keep Loved Ones Connected and Healthy

    And to Reduce the Harm from Substance Use Sherry Vaile Robinson Reprinted from "Opioids" issue of Visions Journal, 2018, 13 (3), p. 17 My son Tyler fatally overdosed on heroin laced with fentanyl in a friend’s hotel room on January 27, 2016. He ...

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  7. “It helped me forget”

    A young mother’s journey through loss—and finding hope Farren Whitford Reprinted from "Opioids" issue of Visions Journal, 2018, 13 (3), p. 23 Growing up, I lived with my mom until I was about 12 and then I moved in with my grandma (me and my ste ...

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  8. Accommodating Addiction in the Workplace

    Adam Picotte, CDMP, Barrister & Solicitor From  "Workplace: Disclosure and Accommodations" issue of Visions Journal, 2018, 13 (4), p. 24 Amy* was in trouble and she knew it. As a single mom with two children requiring special care and a dema ...

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  9. Anorexia

    Treading a thin line Claudia Tianne Chai Reprinted from "Treatments for young people" issue of Visions Journal, 2006, 3(1), pp. 11-12 Some people deeply miss their childhood or high school years. For me, the biggest wave of nostalgia arises when ...

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  10. Treatment Delayed Because I Was Gay?

    Ross Taylor Reprinted from "LGBT" issue of Visions Journal, 2009, 6 (2), pp. 19-20 In my 45 years of existence, sex between two men in Canada has gone from being a criminal offence and diagnosable mental illness to being an act that “consummates ...

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