He sat in my office and told me his father died suddenly of a heart attack. There was no warning and he and his mom were heartbroken.
She was crying as she talked about her 20 year marriage coming to an end. Her husband words, “I don’t love you and want out,” hit hard.
He never saw it coming. For years, his trusted friend was his confidante. How could this lifelong friend betray him with a one-night stand with his girlfriend?
Love, loss, tragedy, trauma…what helps in the healing process may surprise you.
A host of studies have shown that people who write about their trauma and difficult experiences heal better, They sleep better, feel better, do better academically, cope better, and are more positive.
Not everyone will go to someone to talk out a loss or trauma, but anyone can write. Writing helps you take your story of loss and make meaning of it. We open up and express our thoughts and feelings, especially when we need to allow grieving.
Expressing your feelings through writing helps organize your story and gives perspective. Writing releases your story and keeps it from being bottled up. Not talking or writing about difficult events can negatively impact your health.
So if you feel stuck and need to move along the healing process, add writing to your prayer and reading of God’s word. Try 15-20 minutes for a week or so. Write from your heart. Don’t worry about grammar, spelling or sentence construction. No one has to see what you wrote and you can tear it up or delete it at some point if that is your desire.
Label your feelings, talk about how this event affects your life. Get it down on paper and see if writing is a little like taking good medicine. Then write out a few of God’s promises to you–ones that relate to your experience, e.g., God will never leave you, He will be with you through difficulty, He will give you wisdom, comfort, peace, etc.
Writing is therapeutic. Give it a try and see if it helps!