Meet Dina Coughlan, a successful young professional working as an associate producer for a prominent news network. Many look at Dina’s present life and take for granted where she is today. Without knowing the journey, her story cannot be fully appreciated. Upon reading her inspirational article, we reached out to Dina so she can tell her story; and what a story it is. Dina’s mental health challenges began at a young age. As early as junior high school, she knew something was wrong. Dina didn’t understand why she was having the thoughts she was having but was scared to ask for help due to the stigmas that surround mental health. These thoughts continued, worsened and became a way of life for Dina. She started accepting that suicidal thoughts and self-harm was how she would have to live her life. After multiple hospitalizations and medication trial and error, Dina found herself in a hospital that changed the course of her life. She was surrounded by a caring and supportive staff who did not give up on her, or allow her to give up on herself. She recalled a therapist telling her, “Never let your diagnosis define you.” Those words would carry her through to recovery. According to Dina, the single biggest thing that helped was having a therapist that never allowed her to feel sorry for herself.
Once Dina started doing things she could be proud of, she gained momentum and motivation toward her goals. She stated that no matter what was happening in her life “the motivation was me knowing that I wanted to be successful.” She used the tools learned in the hospital along with medication to stabilize enough to go back to school. Dina went on to earn her degree and land an internship which would eventually lead to the career she has today. She now knows that she “must have a greater purpose.” Having survived multiple suicide attempts that “no one should have been able to survive” further motivated her to become a beacon of light for the family members and friends in her life who struggle with mental health concerns. While Dina still struggles at times, she is able to effectively manage her life. Dina attributes her ability to maintain her equilibrium to the care she received, and the tools she learned during her inpatient stay at the mental health facility. We are grateful to Dina for sharing her journey with us, and for being a light to the patients at Ridgeview who have heard her story. Because of people like Dina, they know recovery and success is possible after hospitalization. At Ridgeview, we love to hear stories of triumph and success in spite of mental health issues. Dina is living proof that with the proper support it is possible to live a full and prosperous life with a mental health diagnosis. If Dina can do it, so can you!
If you or a loved one is struggling with a mental health or addiction problem; Ridgeview is here to meet you where you are, and provide the caring and supportive environment needed to help you on your journey to mental wellness and recovery. Call us or come in 24/7 for a no cost assessment!
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