Helping Others to Heal the Soul: The Story of My Struggle with Depression and PTSD


This two-part article was written exclusively for by Jaye. In this article, she discusses her struggle with depression and complex PTSD, her suicide attempt, and what she eventually found helpful.

Hello, I am a person living with depression and C-PTSD as well as dissociative identity disorder. I am here today to discuss the reality of recovery from mental health challenges.

I was under the care of a psychiatrist for 9.5 years. I was misdiagnosed at the time and had no say in what medications I was being prescribed. Back then I did not realize that I had rights.

A History of Trauma

My first breakdown happened after my son Aaron was born. I was in no way prepared to be a mother at the time and felt totally overwhelmed and depressed. It was during this time that I was first hospitalized.

I have a complex history of trauma that started in my early childhood and which has continued into adulthood. In November of 2001 I overdosed on enough medication that I should not be here today.

When the paramedics brought me into the emergency room here in Fairbanks, the ER doctors wanted to have me admitted to the mental health unit. However, when they called my psychiatrist to get permission to admit me he told them to just send me home.

A Second Chance

He had no idea what I had at home that I could have used to finish off what I had started. Thankfully a friend of mine sent her sons out to pick me up from the hospital. Her sons took me out to their place in the North Pole for the night and the next day, which was Thanksgiving. The psychiatrist wanted to see me in his office the day after Thanksgiving and that is when he admitted me.

There was a period of time where I was in and out of the mental health units on a regular basis. I didn’t feel that I had a purpose in this world. For me, things really began to turn around after the overdose. I felt as though I had been given a second chance at life.

In Part II of this article Jaye discusses her new found purpose, her achievements after her suicide attempt, and how she has begun to dedicate her life to helping people who struggle with mental illness.


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