SDN Members don't see this ad. (About Ads) Hey guys, Oldschoool member here in a new account to ask a silly question I'm wondering what some of you attendings and others would think about residency applicant focusing a personal statement on his or her own experience with mental illness. While I'm sure I would find psychiatry interesting regardless, the truth is my decision to pursue psychiatry is probably 90% based on suffering from bipolar disorder myself. I come from a family where literally every blood relative of mine either 1) committed suicide 2) is a drug addict or 3) suffers from a frank mental illness or 4) a combination of these. I am acutely aware of the stigma that mental illness carries in the professional world, even in the field of medicine. However, I have worked with many psychiatrists who were very open about their mental illness, and this has led me to wonder if perhaps the stigma is lessened in the field of psychiatry. I only ask because really the most compelling reasons for me to enter psychiatry revolve around my life experience prior to my becoming interested in medicine. In fact, I only decided to pursue medicine in order to enter psychiatry. I worry that a personal statement and/or interview that left these experiences out would not only be less interesting and compelling, but would actually be disingenuous. OK, I feel some babbling coming on, so I'll leave it here. Thanks.