Writing is great therapy in coping with trauma and stress.

by | Mar 7, 2012


The following quote is from the above link and story  by: Sabri Ben-Achour // March 2, 2012, American University Radio.

“During 25 years as a soldier and a Foreign Service officer, Ron Capps served in Rwanda, Kosovo, Iraq, Afghanistan, and Darfur. He saw war crimes, genocide, and other horrible things that happen in war. The experiences left him traumatized and in a bad place, Capps says.

I was on medication, I was getting help from a counselor, and it just wasn’t working,” he says.  I came very close to committing suicide; I was actually interrupted in the act. Capps later founded the Veterans Writing Project, a nonprofit that provides no-cost writing seminars for veterans that are now becoming part of the treatment regimen at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda.”

The above story really got my attention!  My own approach to therapy, from experiencing trauma as told in my book; Reconciliation: A Son’s Story, centered around writing.  Decades of pain from experiencing traumatic events can build up and weigh heavily in a person’s mind.  You must either talk it out or write about it.  Often talking about these experiences is very difficult and not easily articulated in a logical way allowing the other person to understand and put all the pieces of the puzzle together.  Writing can be done in “brain dumps” without worrying about how the puzzle fits together.  Later, the writer with the help of  a loving editor, can help with the structure and organization.  The benefits for me have been huge.  Not only did my writing represent a form of self therapy and analysis of  life experiences, it put the root problem in perspective.  Knowing the truth allowed me to erase anger and begin the healing process.  Writing is just one way of revisiting the past and a form of relief and release from painful experiences.  The healing process is on-going with continued awareness and increased learning from more research, writing, and talking.

Steve Sparks
Reconciliation: A Son’s Story

About the author

Steve Sparks is a retired information technology sales and marketing executive with over 35 years of industry experience, including a Bachelors’ in Management from St. Mary’s College. His creative outlet is as a non-fiction author, writing about his roots as a post-WWII US Navy military child growing up in the 1950s-1960s.
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