Category: Stories of Hope and Recovery

Catalina Bellizzi

Catalina Bellizzi

Something I am Proud Of: I’m proud of myself for never giving up on ME, even in the hardest moments. I chose every day to fight my way towards the right treatment, med combo, & therapy modalities. There were some unbelievably dark days- especially since things got...

Grace Scarpello

Grace Scarpello

Something I am Proud Of: Something I am proud of in my journey with managing bipolar disorder would be staying. Choosing to stay despite many moments of struggle and trauma has been my greatest achievement. I decided many years ago that leaving early wasn’t an option...

Maria Fernandez

Maria Fernandez

Something I am Proud Of: I thought I was going to get married to him, until I realized I was hypomanic and only in love with a dream. I thought my best friend would always be by my side, until she chose not to be, and died by suicide. I thought I had the independence...

Elizabeth Starck

Elizabeth Starck

Something I am Proud Of: Since my diagnosis of bipolar type 2, I have been blessed to experience many victories. I have graduated college with high honors, got into graduate school, and work as a recovery coach and peer specialist. I have done all of this despite...

Darcie Cohee

Darcie Cohee

Something I am Proud Of: I’m proud of my overall journey; I have come a long way since my proper diagnosis at age 28 (four years ago), and even further since struggling with severe depression throughout my late teens and into my early 20s. I spent the majority...

George Zou

George Zou

Something I am Proud Of: Before being on injection, I was hospitalized 10 times and spent 5 years completing 1 year worth of college. However, once I found the right medication, I successfully completed 4 degrees total in 4 different disciplines: Liberal Arts,...

Lauren Favichia

Lauren Favichia

Something I am Proud Of: The thing that I am most proud of during my mental health journey, is that I have managed to continue furthering my education. Even though I’ve not reached my goal yet and I’ve ran into many different obstacles along the way, I...

Jennifer Randal-Thorpe

Jennifer Randal-Thorpe

Something I am Proud Of: I am proud to say that I have 39 years of lived experience.  I am a six- time suicide attempt survivor and on my journey, I have had to endure many things.  Whether they were good things or bad things my life experience has taught me how to...

Ashley Sievewright

Ashley Sievewright

Something I am proud of: Something I am proud of is overcoming stigma. A few years after being diagnosed an episode led me to being admitted to a psychiatric hospital. I expected my hospitalisation to represent something close to the film One Flew Over the...

Mariko Hewer

Mariko Hewer

Advice For Newly Diagnosed: First, deep breath. Whether you are afraid of or enthusiastic about your future (or both), take it one day at a time. Life is unpredictable under the best of circumstances; add in mental illness and the instability multiplies. Get confident...

Matt Cohen

Matt Cohen

Hi! My name is Matt Cohen, I’m 22 years old, and I’ve been diagnosed with bipolar 2. This journey has been a long and often hard one, but there’s a whole lot to be proud of, not just for me but for everyone at any point in this journey! Something I am Proud Of: One...

Vibhuti (Bipolar Didi)

Vibhuti (Bipolar Didi)

Advice For Newly Diagnosed: Try to become self-aware. Remember. Understand. Get help from the right people and the right sources! Therapy, therapy and therapy. Accept yourself (but don’t be grandiose about the red flags in your own personality if any) Find your...

Bipolar Wanderings

Bipolar Wanderings

Something I am Proud Of: After a mental breakdown during my master’s program in 2016, I lost myself in a trail of  black and white thinking, suicidal ideation, and catastrophic thinking (i.e. imagining the worst  for my life). In short, from June 2016 – June 2017, I...

Enrico Barkhuizen

Enrico Barkhuizen

Something I Am Proud Of: My story started when I was a kid, young and innocent. Living a happy life full of excitement and socialising. At least that is what everyone else saw. But in reality, the thing that they couldn’t have possibly seen or experience were all...

Sandra Crowe

Sandra Crowe

Faces of Hope and Recovery Author: Sandra Crowe Every decade living with bipolar gets better for me. When I was diagnosed with Bipolar 2 at the age of 22, I had already attempted suicide twice. But I wasn’t in a place to accept my diagnosis and the work and stigma...

Noelle O’Clair

Noelle O’Clair

Something I am Proud Of: Since childhood, my approach to self-worth was by ripping my being to shreds. I was on loop of berating myself- “you should be cooler”; “you should be smarter”; “you should be skinnier”. It was constant...

Nev Santana

Nev Santana

Something I am Proud Of After being hospitalized 3yrs in a row, I haven’t been hospitalized all of 2020. I’ve found the correct combination of medication, support, therapy, and overall balance. I’ve also come to an understanding that bipolar...

Breanna Newton

Breanna Newton

Something I am Proud Of I am proud of receiving my diagnosis as well as continuing to put in the work to continue to manage the illness and get better. It took quite the journey to get to the place where I am now, and I can honestly say that since being diagnosed,...

Claire Walgren

Claire Walgren

Advice for Newly Diagnosed: My advice for newly diagnosed: Don’t be afraid to reach out for help. It’s not going to be an easy journey, and having a support system is so important. If you don’t have access to a therapist or psychiatrist, reach out to friends or family...

Natasha Gehlhausen

Natasha Gehlhausen

Advice for Newly Diagnosed: Like a lot of Bipolar people, I was first diagnosed with Depression and Anxiety when I was 15 years old. I wasn’t officially diagnosed with Bipolar for seven more years. I struggled with alcohol and consumption in general a lot...

Leonard Herman

Leonard Herman

Something I’m Proud of: Traveling can be great fun and produce memorable times. Consider somebody with immense anxiety and mood issues. I use to pack my entire bathroom on trips to make sure I would not be without any vital antidote to the poisons lurked within...

Elizabeth Horner

Elizabeth Horner

Something I’m Proud of: My proudest moment throughout my mental health journey was when I decided to stop living in denial and shared my story about struggling with mental illness to friends and family. From there, others began to reach out and ask for advice...

Maria Włodarczak

Maria Włodarczak

Something I’m Proud of: I was diagnosed with a bipolar affective disorder in March this year. I am proud to be able to find a lot of strength and develop in many ways despite such a serious illness. I’ve always wanted to help children with Down’s...

Melissa Anderson

Melissa Anderson

Something I’m Proud of: A few years ago, I decided I wanted to become a counselor.  To do this, I would have to go back to school to get my second master’s degree.  For four years, I was a full-time grad-student, but they were not easy years.  These were also years...

Anja Burcak

Anja Burcak

Something I Am Proud Of: I developed bipolar disorder halfway through college. This made the second half of college much more challenging. I took several semesters off. Imagine trying to take classes while depression drains you of motivation, energy, and ability to...

Rebecca Lombardo

Rebecca Lombardo

Something I Am Proud Of: Ever since I was a little girl, I dreamt of being an author. Over the years, I made positive steps towards writing a book, but it never came to fruition. Back in 2013, my bipolar disorder was strangling me every single day. It seemed like I...

Alyssa McHugh

Alyssa McHugh

Something I Am Proud Of: Being unapologetically me. When I was first diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder, I was in denial and afraid of the stigma that surrounded mental health disorders. It took me a year to finally share with my friends and family. Now, I am proud of...

Veronica S.

Veronica S.

Something I Am Proud Of: This year marks my 10th anniversary (I guess) of understanding what makes me different. What has been paramount in my success is staying on top of myself- accountability, resilience, and love. I can say I have not lived the conformed cookie...

Flo Saulnier

Flo Saulnier

Something I Am Proud Of: To tell my girlfriend, and my boss that I need to pause my life and seek immediate help before I try (again) to harm myself. To be comfortable telling people how I feel and why I will ‘disappear’ for a month to receive therapy and...

Vivek Banapur

Vivek Banapur

Something I Am Proud Of: My journey in managing my mental illness began with cultivating determination.  I consider this the foundation for developing self-awareness of my strengths and weaknesses.  I utilized these strengths when I underwent the peer support...

Carrie Cantwell

Carrie Cantwell

Something I Am Proud Of: The thing I am most proud of is finishing my over three-hundred-page memoir about my experiences entitled Daddy Issues: A Bipolar Memoir. I have lived through so much, and I’m so proud that I’ve been able to make sense of my life...

Kris McElroy

Kris McElroy

Something I Am Proud Of: I am most proud of how far I have come over the years. I remember how I felt when I kept relapsing and was navigating managing my mental illness as well as caring for another person with bipolar disorder. Graduating college, being in a healthy...

Lawrence Van Treeck

Lawrence Van Treeck

Something I Am Proud Of: I am proud of myself for learning to better manage my anxiety. It has been a long road, with lots of hard work, and I have learned a lot about myself and my anxiety. For example, it largely shows up in work environments, in large group...

Kitty

Kitty

Something I Am Proud Of: Existing with bipolar disorder and other comorbid mental illnesses is something that I often remind myself is more than enough to be proud of. I am proud that I exemplify courage and resilience and refuse to settle for anything less than what...

Thea Madeline Porter

Thea Madeline Porter

Something I Am Proud Of: It’s been 7 years since my last episode and 10 years since first diagnosis. I’m determined never to have one again. With blood, sweat, tears and a lot of CBT, while being medically compliant, I am walking on the other side,...

Angela McCrimmon

Angela McCrimmon

Something I Am Proud Of: Something I’m proud of in my journey of managing my mental illness is publishing a book of poetry about my experience with health professionals and educating them on how things are from the other side of their treatment. My book is a...

Lauren Meredith

Lauren Meredith

Something I Am Proud Of: The moment I realized I am like everybody else despite my diagnosis’ was the light in my journey.  I realized my diagnosis of mental health problems is no different than physical diagnosis like asthma or diabetes. Ultimately, when I saw myself...

Gregory Gebhart

Gregory Gebhart

Something I Am Proud Of: I am especially proud of the fact that I was able to write and self-publish “The Mental Patient: A Journey of Faith” on Amazon. This fictional memoir is based on my 65 years of struggling with bipolar with psychosis. It came in three stages...

Mindy Morgan

Mindy Morgan

Something I Am Proud Of: One time I led a local community training on mental illness and I decided to integrate my own experiences with recovery into the training. It was a leap for me because my illness would be made public. The response was huge and people...

Valéry Brosseau

Valéry Brosseau

Something I Am Proud Of: For years I thought if I tried harder I could be different, normal. I was diagnosed in my 20s and finally found hope. I now know there is a name for what I experience and that there is treatment. I’ve tried to give positive meaning to my...

Irene Bucken

Irene Bucken

Something I Am Proud Of: I completed my 10 month DBT class, and got my first full-time job during treatment! Advice For Newly Diagnosed: Learn how to access the beauty and creativity through the ups and downs. Getting treatment, whatever that means for you, is...

Kim Barnett

Kim Barnett

Something I Am Proud Of: I was diagnosed more than 16 years ago, and have struggled tremendously with my diagnosis. Through all of the bumps in the road, I have never given up on myself. There have been times when I’ve been overwhelmed by this disorder, but I continue...

Jessica Kaushik

Jessica Kaushik

Something I Am Proud Of: I am proud of the moment that I realized that I wanted to become a Yoga Teacher. Yoga is about yoking the mind, body & soul – aligning with the Powers that be. So, you see, I was most pleased to have had the courage to face the Spiritual...

Kelly Taylor

Kelly Taylor

Something I Am Proud Of: I am succeeding by fulfilling my daily commitments to my kids, my family, my friends, and my job. I am fighting every day with the help of my support system. My proudest moment in my journey has been the day I became a facilitator for DBSA...

Caoimhe Anne Mercer

Caoimhe Anne Mercer

Something I Am Proud Of: What I am most proud of is initially realising that there was something not quite right with myself and my mental health, and asking for help. Despite a previous diagnosis of depression, I felt like something else was at play- and my...

Susann Brox Nilsen

Susann Brox Nilsen

Something I Am Proud Of: I’ve always been honest to my son about my illness, from when he was little boy. I believe this has been the right thing to do, as many times he has witnessed his mom being in bed, or being extra exhausted due to mental illness. By...

Carmen Beatriz Merchan Suarez

Carmen Beatriz Merchan Suarez

Something I Am Proud Of: I am proud because I am aware of my illness. When I was diagnosed at 21 years old I was very afraid to take medication. My life became chaotic and the first 5 years were hard but there came a time when I learned to life with my illness. Even...

Megan James

Megan James

Something I Am Proud Of: My proudest moment came when I realized that I am my biggest advocate. After keeping silent for so long, I began to understand that I can’t get better if I: 1) don’t support myself 2) be open and honest with others. Advice For Newly Diagnosed:...

Christine Anderson

Christine Anderson

Something I Am Proud Of: I believe what I am most proud of is acceptance of my disorder. I was diagnosed in 1987 and did not accept the diagnosis and begin treatment until 2008. My denial and rejection of treatment led me to 4 years in federal prison. Upon my release...

Jesse Zook Mann

Jesse Zook Mann

Something I Am Proud Of: I am proud that I have been able to transform my most painful years into work that helps others get better. I am proud to bring patients who dedicate their lives to their healing journey together. Advice For Newly Diagnosed: I almost gave up...

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