Artist, mental health advocate, daughter, sister & best friend. I’m loving & creative.

“I worry most about the way people perceive me. I live with borderline personality disorder, commonly defined as the inability to regulate emotions. It can be ugly at times. I was diagnosed with depression in the 3rd grade but as I’ve grown, my diagnoses have too. Struggling with mental health for so long led me to become passionate about breaking the negative stigma around needing help to get through life, as well as the issue with misdiagnosing children. Mental health is tough to overcome because for most, it doesn’t just go away. Rather than trying to beat or conceal my disorder, I’ve learned to take everything day by day. I don’t feel defined by my disorder but I do feel as though I’m shaped by it. I’ve been hospitalized twice but those 2 formative experiences led me to so many inspirational people & taught me so much about coping with illness and understanding it as well. I often feel like I’m not good enough, I’ve felt that way since I was a child. I have always felt things more deeply than many others, I’m quite sensitive. In my life I want to help others to know it’s okay to struggle. It’s okay to have panic attacks. It’s okay to feel like you can’t do something & most importantly it’s okay to back out of any situation, job, or relationship that doesn’t serve you – even if you find yourself saying “but the money is good” or “they didn’t mean to hurt me like that”. I’d tell a 12 year old me that being sad for “no reason” is okay, that just because she feels a lot more than the other kids around her she’s not less of a human, she is supposed to feel! I don’t believe happiness can be achieved through steps or ingredients, I think it’s fleeting most times. But it always helps to have a good playlist, a good friend or two and a good book. Beauty isn’t physical, it exists within ones spirit & energy. I’m proud of my resilience. Struggling with mental illness and suicide makes it hard to keep going sometimes, but I’m still here. I am Rae. I’m caring and observant. I love to love. I love to listen. I love to advocate for those who can’t advocate for themselves.”


Kristie Dean, Rae, 2022. Digital Photograph. ©Kristie Dean. All rights reserved.

Kristie Dean & Denisha Fisher

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