Real People, Real Recovery

We hope you find the following recovery stories, and links to mental health information, advocacy organizations, and wellness resources useful. Please let us know if we can be of help. Thanks!

Stories of Courage, Hope & Resilience

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Kevin Breel”s Story:

Kevin Breel didn’t look like a depressed kid: team captain, at every party, funny and confident. But he tells the story of the night he realized that – to save his own life – he needed to say four simple words.
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Patricia Deegan’s Story:

Ever since I first heard Dr. Deegan’s recovery story at a mental health conference several years ago, I have greatly admired her ability to transform her outrage into a driving force to transform mental health care across the U.S. and around the world.
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Kevin Hines’ Story:

Kevin Hines is a global speaker, author and mental health advocate who reaches audiences with his story of an unlikely survival and his strong will to live. Two years after he was diagnosed with bipolar disorder (at 19 years of age), he attempted to take his own life by jumping from the Golden Gate Bridge. He is one of only thirty-four (less than 1%) to survive the fall and he is the only Golden Gate Bridge jump survivor who is actively spreading the message of living mentally healthy around the globe.
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David Granirer’s Story:

I had a wonderful conversation with David yesterday, and wanted to share his remarkable approach to wellness with you. David is a counselor, stand-up comic, mental health keynote speaker and author of the Happy Neurotic, How Fear and Angst Can Lead To Happiness. He founded Stand Up For Mental Health, a program teaching stand-up comedy to people with mental illness as a way of building self-esteem and fighting public stigma. Stand Up For Mental Health has groups across Canada and the U.S.
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Deepika Padukone’s Story:

Earlier this month, Bollywood superstar Deepika Padukone revealed her struggle with depression, and her road to recovery.
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Keith O’Neil ‘s Story:

Blocking and tackling enormous athletes came naturally to Keith O’Neil — but an opponent he couldn’t bring down lived inside his own mind. In fact, symptoms of his undiagnosed bipolar disorder kept him out of his first game with the team in September 2005.
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Sherry’s Story:

Earlier this year, my best friend Julie, introduced me to Sherry Joiner, an artist, author and mental health advocate. The more I get to know this petite dynamo, the more I am in awe of her resilience in overcoming many a trauma including schizoaffective disorder.
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Hakeem’s Story:

I recently had the privilege of meeting Hakeem in White Plains, NY, and was absolutely inspired by his journey to wellness. A graduate of Harvard University and Columbia University, Hakeem has transformed his struggles with bipolar disorder to promote mental health awareness, and bring hope and healing to people struggling with mental health issues across the U.S.
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Elyn’s Story:

Elyn Saks is a success by any measure: she’s an endowed professor at the prestigious University of Southern California Gould School of Law, and the recipient of the 2009 MacArthur Foundation “Genius” Award. She has managed to achieve this in spite of being diagnosed as schizophrenic and given a “grave” prognosis — and suffering the effects of her illness throughout her life. Read more…

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Akhil’s story:

A few years ago, when he was working in Mumbai, Akhileshwar Sahay learnt that he had won a Nobel Prize. As he drove home that day, he saw congratulatory posters lining his route, all emblazoned with his face and gushing with accolades. This was why, he told his family, Amitabh Bachchan would soon host a special episode of Kaun Banega Crorepati, quizzing contestants on the details of Sahay’s life. Then he sat back to watch himself on the evening news. Read more…

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Marsha’s Story:

The patient wanted to know, and her therapist — Marsha M. Linehan of the University of Washington, creator of a treatment used worldwide for severely suicidal people — had a ready answer. It was the one she always used to cut the question short, whether a patient asked it hopefully, accusingly or knowingly, having glimpsed the macramé of faded burns, cuts and welts on Dr. Linehan’s arms. Read more…