Maddie Rae’s life has been a journey of extremes: near death experiences, rebirth, and second chances. Her story is one involving unspeakable childhood traumas and abuse, teenage rape and severe eating disorders along with navigating the maze that is the American mental health system. Her survival came about when she was finally granted what had always evaded her: Hope.
Maddie started telling her story a few years ago on her personal website, The Whimsy One, after she began to realize the power her words have to change other people’s lives. Her pieces that resonated the most were the ones in which she shared her experiences with abuse, numerous failed suicide attempts, and multiple stays in psychiatric units. Today, her goal is to give a voice to those suffering the same experiences as they try to receive proper medical treatment.
She shares how her journey to mental wellness took over twenty years and a multitude of doctors, medications, & differing diagnoses. She was finally able to become mentally healthy with the proper diagnosis, medication, and therapy. Her life drastically changed when one doctor allowed her to have a say in her own treatment, thereby granting her a semblance of self respect that is often absent in mental health care.
Maddie has been able to speak about her struggles to lawmakers during legislative breakfasts and through very personal conversations with university students. Her goal is for people to ascertain that mental illness need not define the person with the diagnosis, and to instill in her audiences a belief that if people let their voices be heard, eventually people will listen and thus they will be empowered to play an active role in their own care. She would ultimately like to start a nonprofit that funds therapy and medication for patients that may not otherwise be afforded the care they so desperately need.