The Calgary Journal
The Calgary Journal


Stereotypes, negative associations and stigma often prevent individuals from seeking help with addiction. But, the 12 Step program demonstrates that long-term recovery is possible.

When I was a child, it was easy to hate myself. A scrawny kid of 12, I was either too much or too little of just about everything. Too skinny, too hairy, nose too big, chest too small and far too sensitive to not take every mean-spirited comment to heart. Eventually, I grew into my features and out of others. I got waxed, got contact lenses, got my braces off and by the time high school rolled around, my appearance was the only aspect of myself I was actually confident in. By that point, I felt like I deserved to like myself.

In today’s media-driven society the desire to follow high beauty standards can make people feel pressured, and can even contribute towards the development of eating disorders.  

Twenty-two-year-old Colten Stankowski dabbled in cigarette smoking before he tried vaping. Once he discovered vapes — and his favourite mint and dessert flavours — he switched for good.