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Voices for Recovery

Nemasa Asetra (05/18/2012)

Living with a mental health condition can have devastating effects. It can strike anyone at any time in life, regardless of race, social or economic status, or other factors. Some people may think it will never happen to them.

My mental illness began in 1989. I was first diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia; however, I also suffered with depression but it was not discovered until years later. I went without treatment for my conditions because I did not want to feel like a zombie.

After years filled with numerous visits to Martin Luther King/Drew Hospital in California, I decided to do the right thing and seek treatment for my mental health issues. Although I relapsed in 1995, I continued again toward recovery in 1997. I finally came to my senses and realized the importance of medication management and some type of therapy. Although there have been challenges along the way, I continued to receive treatment and learned the vital lesson that I could not get well if I stopped taking medication just because I felt like it.

Plain and simple, medication management and psychotherapy have helped me stay on the path of recovery from my mental health conditions. I’m an aspiring author with an autobiography detailing my mental health issues, and I advocate for the mentally ill. I am now 45 years old and living life to the fullest.

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