This week I had the privilege of attending the Canadian Mental Health Association’s #b4stage4 conference in Victoria BC.
From birth, you could tell there was something different about me. I would always cry and never sleep as a baby. As the years went by, things just got harder and more complicated. Doctors refused to diagnose me with anything. Later in life, I struggled to overcome heroin and alcohol addiction. After a suicide attempt, I was finally diagnosed with bipolar disorder which changed my life for the best. The medications and therapy finally gave me a taste what it’s like to be happy. I made this video to increase awareness about mental illness.
Born in Halifax, Paulie O'Byrne is a force to be reckoned with.
Be less dependent on my family
Make better decisions
Spend more time with Mom
Cut down my smoking
Keep my doctor’s appointments
Be more in the present
Be less of a burden to my mom and brother
Find a job
Stop using drugs
Stay on my medications
Stay out of the hospital
I want to be:
The best person to you
A good memory
The trigger for your smile
Your peaceful warrior
I will try my best to not abuse you with:
In return, you will help me achieve:
There is not much discretion when it comes to me choosing a mate when I’m ill. It seems that my M.O. is to fall for someone who also battles some form of mental illness – be it anxiety, depression, addiction, paranoia – the list drones on.
“Any behavior, substance related or not, that a person craves, finds relief in, finds pleasure in, but has negative consequences, and difficulty giving it up.” – Dr. Gabor Mate, M.D. (addiction treatment specialist)