Voices Across America

Depression: Setting an example for my kids

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State: Maryland
Congressional District: MD04


Ear / Nose / Throat Disease, Heart Disease, Mental Health, Migraine, Neurological Disease

Issues and Challenges

Sakinah has encountered: Access to Expert Providers

My Story

I first started having problems with my mental health in high school. I noticed the depression first one Thanksgiving when I couldn’t get motivated to do my work. I slept a lot back then even though I was active in sports and in my church. I didn’t know that my sleeping patterns were indicative of narcolepsy and excessive daytime sleepiness.

Fast forward to college and a heavy load of challenges and classes, and I experienced depression once again, and alcohol related issues. I had trouble relating to my peers and staying on top of things. I saw a psychiatrist who diagnosed me with unipolar depression and put me on prozac. Unfortunately that sent me into a manic episode and I had to stop the medication. After I had my children, I noticed symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and anxiety. So I went to a different doctor. He diagnosed me with ADHD and bipolar disorder.

Since that time, I’ve been managing my symptoms and learning about my other diagnoses. It’s an up and down journey but I’m glad to be able to share my story with others.

My Motivation and Inspiration

What motivates me is being able to raise my children in a positive manner. When they were younger, I felt guilty for being sick and I thought I’d failed them. Now, I enjoy talking to them about mental health and mental illness. I like teaching them how to spot the signs early and how to reach out for help should they ever need to. I like that we’re growing together.

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