About Tracey

Tracey Yokas creates stuff. When she isn’t writing, she can be found playing with paint, glitter, and glue. Art fuels her passion for connection. Tracey lives in Southern California with her family, and aspires to share her truth so others will know they are not alone. Each time she takes a risk and shines a light on her family’s struggle with mental illness, stigma and ignorance lessen. Tracey holds a BS in Communications from Ohio University and a Master’s Degree in Counseling Psychology from California Lutheran University. 

Tracey has contributed articles to iPinion Syndicate (here), and had essays selected to appear in two anthologies: Belly Shame: Stories from the Gut edited by Debra LoGuercio DeAngelo and The Walls Between Us: essays in search of truth edited by Beth Kephart.


"We're all just walking each other home."

–Ram Dass

Notes on Gratitude

Cleaved, 50 for 50 #33

Cleaved, 50 for 50 #33

Please check out my new essay

Toward the end of last year, there was a call for submissions for an anthology that was going to be about fury, telling "stories of women who know their anger is real and justified and who are using it today -- in small and big ways -- as tools of resistance. . ."  Oh boy, I thought. I've got something to say about that! Everyone I know who has interacted with the mental healthcare system has something to say about fury.

Anyway, I got to thinking about the complexities of the system and of institutions in general, which led me (as it usually does) to thinking about organized religion and a specific moment from our journey when the two collided. "Cleaved" was born from my desire to reflect on the events of that time in the larger context of today. What has changed, what hasn't. How I've changed. The work I must do to continue forward in a healthy way. And not least of all, dealing with my feelings around the current administration to stay energized for the long haul.      

After I submitted the essay, the editors announced that the anthology was scrapped. I wanted the piece to have a home and contacted my friends at iPinion, who were nice enough to read it and eagerly publish it. Thank you to them. 

You can read "Cleaved," HERE.

Layers of this story are still coming to light. My relationship with anger has changed, but anger is a sneaky bastard. Pops up sometimes when you least expect it. Writing about my feelings helps me focus, and forces me (in a good way) to continue to look at underlying fears that stoke anger's flames. I have further to go and more work to do, but I'm making progress.       

If anyone wants to communicate about anger--its consequences and its pleasures--leave a comment below or send me a private message.

And please, if you or someone you know needs help with a mental health crisis reach out. The system is imperfect, for sure, but most of the professionals we met during our journey had a sincere desire to help and guidance to offer. 

Mental Health Resource List HERE.

Mental Health Resources for Adolescents and Young Adults HERE.

Lifeline Crisis Support HERE.

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline HERE.

  • 7 January 2019
  • Author: Tracey Yokas
  • Number of views: 474
  • Comments: 2

2 comments on article "Cleaved, 50 for 50 #33"


Juliette Reiss

1/30/2019 1:19 PM

“Cleaved” is so intense and the journey of your experiences with rage in the mental health system is truly a story of finding faith in such unexpected places!! You are so brave! This piece is so raw and so important because you really take into account more than just your own experience and I love you so much for every gut-wrenching word.


Tracey Yokas

2/1/2019 12:25 PM

your friendship and support mean so much to me <3 <3 <3

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New Book

"Your book is coming together in a great story that I believe will touch people wholeheartedly. You are taking what was, at times, a very sad and difficult journey, and creating a way to share it and encourage others to maintain the course, to hope, to keep moving forward towards a better life. That's an incredible thing. The path that led you to here, to writing this book, to morph it as you went along, is coming together beautifully. That path, like ourselves and our lives,hasn't been "perfect"... but the end product will be amazing and change lives for the better."

- Susan S.

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