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Alcoholism and Mental Illness

My mother had a family history of mental illness and my brother, Eric, died from mental illness. Half a year after his death, Aunt Nancy died too. She and my brother died the same way: they were both found in a garage after overdosing on alcohol. Although aunty Nancy was a heavy drinker, she was never diagnosed with mental illness.
Aunt Allen committed suicide by driving off a pier at an insane speed. She had suffered through a mental illness. In the 1950s, my aunt Mary was inflicted with maniac depression, which later took her life.
Thirty-two years ago, I began struggling with alcoholism and bipolar disorder. I have been …

How I Transitioned from Cutting to Changing My Campus for Good

I began cutting myself when I was in grade five. I continued to cut myself everyday until I went to college. Many days, I would self-harm several times. I felt ugly and completely worthless.
Too often, I would find myself with a hammer or something sharp to scratch, cut or bash my hands. I refused to stop until I was in intense pain, had blacked out, or there was a lot of bleeding.
I used drugs to numb my crazy thoughts. My thoughts encouraged me to self-harm. I took Ritalin, mushrooms, cocaine, ecstasy, crystal methamphetamine, antidepressants, weed, painkillers- anything I could find.
One day, while I was in grade 12…

Mental Illness: Where Can You Find Help?

When we are physically sick, we wait at most a couple of days before consulting a doctor. Most times, we go to the doctor immediately we are worried that something is seriously wrong. We research the symptoms, tell family and friends, and get it checked out.
However, when most people feel emotionally imbalanced, act differently or have scary thoughts, they do not ask for help. Months later, despite noticing that it is getting worse, they still do not go and seek medical help.
Instead, excuses are made. They think it will disappear by itself, or that it is in their head. Some blame their personality, stress, or their age. Most…