A typical child and a good student, Daniel always did just fine when he was in an environment with clearly defined limits. With less supervision in high school, Daniel started to lose his bearings. Facing discrimination and harassment from several classmates, Daniel’s confidence was shaken, and he no longer knew who he was. Thus began his search for identity. He would start projects, but was not always able to finish them. He was looking for challenges to prove to himself that he could tackle them, but also to attract attention. It was at this time that Daniel was also starting to question his sexual orientation. The disappointments and frustrations piled up. At age 40, Daniel experienced his first bout of depression, and thought he could recover by himself. He launched himself wholeheartedly into a major project with his partner, which enabled him to regain his self-confidence and temporarily push away the symptoms of his depression. A few years went by and Daniel felt he was doing better, but his malaise resurfaced. This time, he sought out the help he needed to begin a new chapter in his life.
Daniel attended group meetings to help him better cope with his anxiety. He became aware of his issues and, more importantly, of his capabilities. Daniel made a quick recovery, and emerged with a strong desire to educate people about mental health. A year ago he became involved in his community by taking part in the first social work summer school to promote awareness about strengths-based approaches to psychological well-being. In January 2019, he will deliver training at Université de Sherbrooke, teaching future mental health leaders how they can sensitize students and professors to mental health issues. Thanks to his involvement, he has been able to find a place for himself. Daniel has found inner peace now that he is in harmony with who he is and is ready to do what he can to support mental health.