Before I came to Insight Intensive I was in a very low-point of my depression. I lost my father when I was 7-years old and I have since identified that I never went through the proper grieving process. I had developed substance problems with weed and alcohol since starting university and these unhealthy coping habits had become an addiction that put me further into depression. These problems had started to hurt my academic work in a rigorous engineering program. Not only were these habits hurting my academics but my self-esteem had dropped dramatically; I became reliant on drugs and alcohol for any social interactions. I had gotten into a place where I believed nobody would like the sober me so I would avoid being sober most of the day. Luckily I had the presence of mind to ask for help at this point because my life had become unmanageable. I withdrew from college midway through the semester and started looking for programs to get my life back on track. Eventually I found Insight Intensive.
When I came to Insight I immediately found someone to talk to who I really felt I could trust. His name was Dave and he was my senior mentor. All of the participants were also very open and welcoming to the program. After just a few weeks my self-esteem and self-worth had increased dramatically by simply living life sober on a regular basis and receiving messages from people who I had left behind at school and at home. My therapist, Kat, helped me identify the real nature of the problems I’ve been having. I worked hard with her to find ways to manage these issues and emotions and to come up with healthy coping strategies when depressed moods occur.
Since the end of my program I have continued to make for the better. The first change is in how I stand up for myself and am more assertive by being able to talk to people about issues I may have with them. Another change has been in dealing with depressed moods. Having a mentor around to talk to was a huge help, so I now surround myself with friends who are willing to listen and support me. I learned at Insight to structure my life so that activity prevents isolation when start to feel down. The last change that has occurred since coming here is my relationship and openness with my parents. Weekly calls with your senior mentor are a great time to be open with your parents and also have a supportive presence in case of problems. After 5 weeks here my parents visited and we had a meeting with both my therapist and senior mentor to update them on things I have changed and any issues or topics I wished to discuss with my parents. All these changes have led to much happier moods, more confidence, and a better relationship with my parents.