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. Carrying On

    My struggle for a different life Michael O'Shea Web-only article from "Housing and Homelessness" issue of Visions Journal, 2007, 4 (1) Doing drugs for the very first time will give you a high that you never had before, but after that, drugs ...

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  2. 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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  3. Coming in From the Cold

    Caregiving for Alzheimer's on Film and in Life Bruce Saunders Reprinted from "Seniors' Mental Health" issue of Visions Journal, 2002, No. 15, pp. 21-22 About five years ago, I was videotaping an elderly woman’s life story. Her husband ...

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  4. Compassion by Law Enforcers

    More Common than May Be Expected Frank G. Sterle, Jr Reprinted from "Criminal Justice" issue of Visions Journal, 2005, 2 (8), pp. 24-26 The police, and the justice system as a whole, are reputed to criminalize rather than recommend treatment for ...

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  5. Continuing the Journey: A way back from trauma and substance use

    Katherine B. Oxner, MSW and Veronica Brown Reprinted from "Women" issue of Visions Journal, 2004, 2 (4), p. 25 Tara sounds like any other young mother. While her two-year-old squeals happily in the background, Tara offers her daughter a carrot a ...

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  6. Conversations with Myself

    Danielle Raymond Reprinted from "CBT" issue of Visions Journal, 2009, 6 (1), p. 10 If you had asked me when I was 16 if I thought I’d be sharing my life with an eating disorder, I’d probably have said not likely. I may have added something about ...

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  7. Cutting Class

    A mother’s perspective on self-harm  Joleen* Reprinted from  "Young People: Self-Injury"  issue of  Visions Journal, 2017, 13 (2), p. 17 I recall my girl, prettiest doll ever: blond curly hair, the bluest eyes, her grandfather’s dimples, and a s ...

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  8. Cutting Through the Binary

    Self-injury and self-acceptance from a gender-nonconforming perspective Elliot* Reprinted from  "Young People: Self-Injury"  issue of  Visions Journal, 2017, 13 (2), p. 14 I have been fascinated by pain for as long as I can remember. As a young ...

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  9. Dealing with Physical and Mental Health Conditions

    Then and Now Barbara Berry Reprinted from "Seniors' Mental Health" issue of Visions Journal, 2002, No. 15, pp. 17-19 My name is Barbara Berry. I’m 56 yearsold and I’ve lived in Dawson Creek since 1982. Some of you may know me, as I am the p ...

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  10. Dear Dad

    Christine Reprinted from "Families" issue of Visions Journal, 2004, 2(3), p. 17 When Elizabeth, the Executive Director of ANAD, asked me if I would write a letter to you about our relationship during my illness, I said yes right away without eve ...

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