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Spotlight Series Audio
Betrayed by the Mind: From Bank Robberies to Breaking Free from Mental Illness - Audio Only

In this captivating episode of ‘From Surviving to Living, Spotlight Series’ we dive into the powerful story of Felicia, a woman who journeyed from a troubled past, marked by poverty and family struggles, to a life entangled with undiagnosed mental health issues, gambling addiction, and a series of bank robberies. Felicia opens up about her childhood in Ohio, her academic and professional success, and the spiral into gambling that led her to incarceration. Following her aunt’s advice, Felicia moves to Minnesota, seeking a fresh start and better mental health services. Through her narrative, we explore the critical themes of mental health awareness, the impact of trauma, the journey to recovery, and the importance of purpose. This episode is not just Felicia’s transformation story but a beacon of hope, emphasizing the power of support, the significance of self-awareness, and the transformative power of finding one’s purpose through helping others. Amidst her challenges, Felicia’s journey is a testament to resilience, the possibility of change, and the importance of faith in personal recovery and renewal.


This episode features a candid interview with Felicia Smith, who shares her harrowing yet enlightening journey from a challenging upbringing in Ohio to incarceration and eventually finding purpose and healing in Minnesota. Battling with undiagnosed mental health issues, including depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, and a gambling addiction, Felicia’s life spirals out of control, leading her to commit several bank robberies. Her turning point comes when she seeks help for her suicidal thoughts, leading to her diagnosis and the beginning of her path to recovery. Despite setbacks and the struggle to find effective treatment and support, Felicia’s story is one of resilience and transformation. She finds purpose in helping others while in prison and continues this mission upon release, advocating for mental health awareness and support. The episode also touches on the importance of faith, the power of second chances, and the significance of finding purpose in life’s challenges.


00:29 Behind the Scenes: Setting Up for the Show
00:51 Introducing the Spotlight Series: From Surviving to Living
01:10 Felicia’s Journey: From Unawareness to Mental Health Advocacy
02:27 The Struggles of Growing Up in Poverty and Family Addiction
03:32 Achieving Success Against the Odds
04:20 The Downward Spiral: From Loss to Bank Robbery
17:50 Confronting Mental Health: Diagnosis and the Road to Recovery
19:51 The Thrill and Downfall of Bank Robberies
21:18 The Turning Point: Arrest and Realization
22:29 The Struggle for Rehabilitation in Incarceration
30:16 Finding Purpose and Redemption
32:10 Reflections on Change and Growth
34:36 Exploring Faith and Mental Health

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