Rabu, 22 Desember 2010

Writing as Therapy

Most writers are aware of the therapeutic nature of writing, but most may be less than willing to admit such writing therapy may be personally beneficial.

Sometimes the writing that is most helpful us on a personal & emotional level is writing that they do not need to be published. It is highly personal, but can helps us understand something about ourselves.

Leslie Ridgeway & Dale Griffith have seen firsthand the benefits of using writing as a therapy among the ladies inmates at York Correctional Institute in Connecticut.

These individuals worked with the ladies at YCI. They encouraged the inmates to write their inmost thoughts without the threat of condemnation. They found there was a sense of healing that took place when these ladies admitted their hurts in writing.

According to their 2002 document entitled, "Struggles: Writing as healing" Ridgeway & Griffith admit, "Many ladies had reached the limit of their coping skills... educational staff worried about the women's mental & physical health & discussed ways to help them cope. A safe port in the emotional storm was needed."

The 'Struggles' program centered around using words to capture their recollections on violence in their lives.

 inmate wrote, "As children they are taught to respect & obey our parents. Usually I covered with my hands up defending my face & head. A reaction that I am definite is a defense mechanism of survival. I didn't harm my father, but my physically defensive behavior of pushing her away from me shocked her back in to reality. The beatings finally stopped & I was five times five times times time left with the query as to why I hadn't reacted to her actions years earlier."

As a focused writer it might be assistive to you to take regular time to write something that is fundamentally theraputic. None of us came from ideal situations in life. By writing about your past you may discover a sense of personal freedom & increased freedom to pursue your writing career with less baggage.

While they seek to identify with the pain the author feels, they also gain a sense for the liberation they feels in finally saying in print what had been bottled up inside for so long.

 unnamed woman who was part of the inmate writing exercise reported, "Seeing our violent experiences in writing is more personal & actual - when they read them aloud. When I listen to myself aloud, I am relating my experience to someone else, & the emotional feelings, which have often been repressed, hit me."

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