Sharing stories is a way to connect with people and inspire others who may be struggling with behavioral health conditions. When you share your recovery journey and how your recovery has impacted those around you, you show people they are not alone.
Adam Newport’s Personal Story:
Growing up, life seemed to be one thing after another. I went from foster home to foster home, looking for my forever family. Each house that abandoned me left me with the same question, “Why wasn’t I good enough?”. Each house breaking my heart a little more because I would get attached to the family and the dream that one day they would love me. Along with the broken pieces, came days of sadness. Days of feeling like I would never amount to anything or be accepted because no one wanted me. When someone looks in the mirror they notice characteristics they like about themselves, but that was n’t the case for me. I looked at myself and hated every flaw, real or not, that made me unlovable by everyone around me. I prayed every single day for God to end all the hurt, all the pain, and all the hatred that I ever felt.
I hated the way life was. I hated myself. I hated waking up so much that I looked towards every possible outlet to make me feel better. When one outlet wore off or didn’t give me the satisfaction I longed for, I would move on to the next. I was willing to go to any length to make everything stop and that’s what I did.
I was scared of the feelings that I had. I felt like I was going to burst keeping all of my thoughts inside. One day I finally broke down and unloaded everything that was happening to someone which was the scariest and hardest thing I have ever done. Those fears and pain were used to turn my life around and start the climb out of the hole I was in. I started attending a weekly WRAP (Wellness Recovery Action Plan) program, seeing a therapist, and saw a doctor and was diagnosed with Bipolar Depression, I began taking a medication shortly after. Through WRAP I was able to develop healthy coping mechanisms and wellness tools to help me make it through the dark times in life. Through weekly therapy sessions I was able to work through a lot of past hurts. It definitely wasn’t easy but it was worth it. WRAP, therapy, and medication were the most crucial aspects of starting to move toward a healthy life.
Now, I’m not saying that it was easy or that life has been a walk in the park. There have been many sleepless nights, hard conversations, and a lot of learning. But I will say that I am so thankful that I took that first step. It was the best decision I have ever made. So, if you are in a place where you don’t see a point to life anymore or substances control your life, please reach out.
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Find out the best way to convey your personal story, follow the link below to head to the SAMHSA website to learn how your story can demonstrate that recovery is possible.
J. H.’s Personal Story:
Today I am well. I am so thankful for the all of the love and support I have been given over the years. My recovery is a result of intentional self-care, honest reflection and support from my family and friends. I have grown to accept and embrace my past as a series of lessons and guides to help me in my recovery. Today I am known to many as a husband, father, brother, son, survivor, advocate, and peer. In the past, I was known by much darker and negative terms. Liar, thief, drunk, junkie, bum victim, and “that strange guy”. As a young adult I struggled with substance abuse and mental illness. Lacking any healthy way to cope with traumatic childhood memories, I turned to drugs and alcohol as a way to numb my feelings. My health and personal relationships suffered and I found myself in need of professional help. At a time in my life when I questioned my ability to keep going, I was introduced to the concepts of wellness, recovery and hope. My recovery has not followed a straight line, and there have been times when my health and relationships have suffered. I am a work in progress. Everyday I learn a little more, watch my moods like a hawk, practice self-care, laugh when it’s funny, cry when it’s sad, forgive myself and others, give my time freely and lean on my supporters when I sway. Thanks for listening. ~ J. H.
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