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Sharing Stories of Hope and Recovery


Having a mental illness can be lonely, isolating and scary. But when people share their stories of coping with mental illness or substance use disorder, it can provide inspiration and hope and be a welcome reminder that you are not alone in your challenges.

Below are just a few examples of websites where people share their personal stories of hope and recovery. In some cases, there are opportunities to join in the discussion or share your own story.


Voices for Recovery

Voices for Recovery is a program of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) with personal stories of people recovering from mental and/or substance use disorders. These individuals are celebrating their successes and sharing them with others to help educate the public about treatment and how it works.

For example, as part of a Young People in Recovery series, Devin Fox, 27, explains that recovery has given him choices. You can also read Voices for Recovery personal stories and share your recovery story.


Hearing Voices of Support

Hearing Voices of Support is an initiative of the Schizophrenia and Related Disorders Alliance of America (SARDAA) to promote acceptance, support, hope, and recovery for people living with schizophrenia and related brain disorders.

SARDAA notes that people with schizophrenia or a related brain disorder “are often reluctant to talk about it for fear of being judged or discriminated against. We’re working to change that. We’ve invited people to speak openly about the voices they hear.”

Jessica shares her story of experiencing drug-induced psychosis in her early 20s and later diagnoses of paranoia and mania. A musician and songwriter, she talks about her treatment, the support from her family and her own determination to stay on track, are helping her to be optimistic about her future.


About Face – Stories of PTSD

Learn about posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) from veterans through the About Face program from the National Center for PTSD of the Department of Veterans Affairs.

Hear stories of recovery from veterans and stories from family members of veterans. You can also learn the basics of treatment from VA clinicians talking about what to expect.


Personal Stories of Triumph

The Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA) presents a series of personal stories from people living with anxiety, depressive, obsessive-compulsive, and trauma-related disorders. You can learn about their experiences, how they have coped and what helped them find hope and recovery.

For example, Tobias Atkins shares his story of social anxiety: “I am sharing my story of healing to let you know it can get better, as long as you do the work.”


NoStigmas Project

The NoStigamas project is working to raise awareness, reduce stigma, foster understanding and create conversation through self-expression. It offers a variety of ways to share experiences of mental illness, through stories, art, photography, poetry, music and advocacy.

The project encourages you to share your story: “Just like everyone has their own path to healing, everyone has a unique way to share their story.”


You are Not Alone and OK2Talk

The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) has two online moderated spaces, You Are Not Alone and OK2Talk, for sharing stories and creative expression. They allow for anonymous public posting.

The websites include stories of many different types of experiences, such as the story of a communications professional and mother of two coping the bipolar disorder.


AnxietyDissociative DisordersADHDBipolar DisordersIntellectual DisabilitySleep DisordersDepressionAutismPatients and FamiliesHoarding DisorderGender DysphoriaAlzheimer’sOCDPersonality DisordersEating DisordersGambling DisorderSpecific Learning DisorderSomatic Symptom DisorderSchizophreniaPostpartum depressionAddictionPTSD


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