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Stories with Strangers

A Community Building Library at Regis University

Stories with Strangers: Reserve a Conversation with a Human Book

Hands outstretched holding books of multiple colours

Conversations with Human Books are available at 2:00pm, 2:45pm, and 3:30pm.

Reserve your story now!

Double Take

"Being Native American is a hard life to live, being homeless make it very hard to be me. There  is a whole community that depends on the younger generation, and now living in another community where I have to survive everyday like survival of the fittest."



"Carving a path as head brewer and brewery owner as a young queer woman in a male dominated industry"

"I grew up in small town Ohio and pursued a very liberal arts degree and went into community organizing. When I started home brewing at 21 I realized that was my true passion and loved to Colorado to pursue this career and worked my way up from bartender to cellerman, to assistant brewer then head brewer than part owner to full owner of Goldspot brewing by 31. Not only was I able to excel at brewing I was also able to build a brewery with social justice initiatives and create an truly inclusive community space."




"I lived on the streets for 10 years and got help from the Safe Outdoor Space camp, so grateful for the support I got."



"The two most important days of your life are the day you are born and the day you figure out why" Mark Twain

"I had an amazing life as a professional ski patroller/EMT at Breckenridge for many years.  I was happily married and had wonderful friends and we all played together in the great outdoors.  Rafting, backcountry skiing hut to hut, kayaking, rock climbing....blessed.  I was planning on having those things the rest of my life and being buried in the mountains when the time came.  After a diagnosis of bipolar 1, the trajectory of my life completely changed, and I was left with nothing."



Earning your big girl panties is hard!

"I am a big sister and I have 5 younger sisters.  Each of them has a unique personality and they all have different goals.  As I grow older and realize I have a lot to learn, they still ask me for advice and how to get closer to being a big girl.  The truth is, I am just winging it, but I do my best to guide them in the right direction." 



Relics of a Saved Soul

"After going on a treacherous journey with a mental health condition, I'm able to share my story about what it's like to live, survive, and thrive with Bipolar Disorder and CPTSD. I have spent many years battling my demons that put me face to face with substance abuse, sexual assault and near death experiences. I share my story to break the curse of stigma, discrimination, and the ill treatment of those of us living with a mental health condition."



The First Born and the Baby

"There are many things that can prepare one for parenthood, but few books, blogs or articles can prepare you for the unknown timing, diagnosis or discovery of mental illness in one of your children.  And then, just when, you seem to have found the resources needed - if you’re lucky - to provide for that child, and along comes another challenge in completely different clothing.  From general anxiety disorder to co-occuring mental and physical challenges of a rare disorder.  These are but two chapters in my family’s mental health journey."




“Stephen will begin by singing The WHO’s “Behind Blue Eyes” a cappella. He will then describe a traumatic incident from when he was 19 that taught him an invaluable lesson- I. E., believe what comes out of a person’s mouth, especially if they’re an MD, even if it makes absolutely no sense and contradicts their public persona 180°.” 



Changing Countries

"I am a Dutch girl, I came to the US 23 years ago. I never planned to be here that long. I came for the adventure and just to check it out. Today, I am still here and at a cultural crossroads."



Training Materials

  1. Greet readers with a brief introduction to establish rapport.
  2. Tell your story effectively by making eye contact and being aware of nonverbal communication.
  3. Open up the conversation to questions. If no questions, perhaps address your experience with prejudice, discrimination, etc.
  4. If someone asks something you are not prepared to answer, assume they need help understanding appropriate boundaries. This does not mean you have to answer any question you are not comfortable with.
  5. If the conversation is uncomfortable, or you feel unsafe in any way, you can end it immediately. Raise and report any issues with librarians or organizers.
  6. Take some time after each conversation to reflect.
  7. Again, we are here for you, please let us know how you are doing throughout the event.
  8. Remember- telling your story should bring light to your uniqueness. This should be a learning experience for readers and empowering for books.


A boundary is “ invisible line that defines what behaviors are acceptable for an individual. Boundaries can be physical or emotional. Boundaries can also be based on time or space.” 

From the University of Illinois Chicago Wellness Center 



“Setting boundaries is a form of self-care. It helps to create a clear guideline/rule/limits of how you would like to be treated. They let others know what is and what is not okay/acceptable. It honors our needs and wants so that we feel respected and safe.” 

From the University of Illinois Chicago Wellness Center 

Resources for Books