Thursday, 23 January 2014

The Power of Voice


It used to be that you went to the salon / saloon when things got tough.  It sort of depended on which was more socially acceptable at the time.  The chat and support was free (over a beer or under your curlers) and so you would emerge a few hours’ later feeling better (in theory, on a good day anyways).  A casual 'go over' of trauma with the intention of moving on. 
And because we developed or regressed (depending on who you ask) as a society and no longer had a collection of friends to talk to when things got bad, we created an industry and called it therapy.  A Rent a Friend for an hour and a fee.  Also known as ‘Psychologists’.  We even trained them in the art of friend like activities; active listening, issued them with a code of confidentiality and forbid them to take advantage of anyone during that state of mind and sometimes, just sometimes, we were offered ‘professional’ advice.Professional advice’ based on the reading of a textbook of cases most likely never experienced first hand.  A now formalised rehash of trauma in the effort to move on. 

That being subject of course (the moving on) to just how much the same psychologist wanted to keep you coming back, for ‘your own well-being’ of course.

It used to be somewhat ‘okay’ to be in therapy.  A little more accepted where I came from than it is here.  You know a pat on the back and a ‘muttered under the breath out of intended hearing;’ “thank God, it’s about time that crazy chic went to therapy”.  You know, generally supportive.  Well, in public anyways. 
Here, they simply tell you, you have issues and that the issues themselves do not set you apart from anyone else; and so just what makes you think you’re so damn special.  A whole country with trauma (not the only one mind you, but that is whole other blog).  And so therapy would only suggest that you have economic means to elevate yourself as part of a more privileged class than the average person on the street.     

And thus I do believe, we have evolved one step further, and are now in the era of an editor.  First of all it sounds a little more ‘classy’.
 No, I won’t make it.  I’m off to see my editor.  Busy with the final rewrite.” 

I figure, if one needs to go through the whole process of giving the pain you experienced a voice, you might as well go for the full Monty, do commercial and write a book.   
It is a written rework of trauma and trust me, by the time the process is finished the experience will have been felt, re-felt, cried over, rehashed, revisited, gone over, examined, analysed, rewritten, evaluated, scrutinized, etc.  You’ll be so tired of the whole thing, you’ll simply move on.        

But despite that, there is one thing life has definitely taught me; pain is one thing that does not bottle well. It has a way of coming out and if you won’t give it a voice, it lays claim to the well-being of the other areas of your life; your health, your relationships, your finances, etc.    
And so, I recommend giving yourself a voice because if anyone is going to reap the silver lining from the ups and downs of life’s journey, it might as well be you. 

That voice may not be in the form of a book, but allowing your pain to speak will at least free you to live a life having grown and moved on from your hurts.