The challenge for me, and many others with a dual diagnosis of addiction and mental illness, is that no program of recovery can treat mental illness. Recovery literature states that sometimes we need outside help—referring to medical experts. Difficulties arise when that literature is misinterpreted and those people see depression, anxiety, or any other mental illness as a feature of addiction that can be treated solely with a program of recovery. Contrary to that belief, medical illness cannot be treated with a spiritual solution. It is paramount that people who suffer with mental illness seek treatment from a trained medical professional.
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I write and speak out even when it hurts, even if it means being judged, because it is far better than atrophying inside from silence and denial. And who knows? Maybe someone who reads one of my stories will finally find the courage to free themselves, too, from whatever blanket they hide under.