Seasonal holidays involve many inherent rituals, but have you considered creating your own protective rituals? I had the opportunity to discuss rituals–both helpful and harmful ones–with psychologist Stanton Peele while researching an article I wrote about addiction for Vice. He describes the ways in which some rituals actually protect people from developing addictions–such as Jewish customs of drinking wine only during certain occasions. He finds that Jews who associate wine in that religious context often find it odd to think of alcohol as a “party drug.” This conversation made me think of the rituals we encounter during the holidays. Can trauma survivors intentionally create protective rituals as a means of coping with some of the extra stress associated with holidays?
Hi readers. I’m sorry I’ve slacked on the posting these past couple weeks. I’ve been exceptionally busy with freelancing. Which is great, because it allows me a larger platform to talk about issues that are really important to me, and it gives me a way to be paid for writing, which in turn helps keep Betty’s Battleground going (about to pay my internet bill–woot!!). I promise that I will have a shiny new post for you–written by me–this Wednesday, and then on Friday a very special guest post that I absolutely cannot wait to share. Good stuff’s acomin!
For today, because I do need to get back some edits back shortly, and get working on an article about addiction recovery, and get researching an article about addiction recovery, and get working on a blog post about addiction recovery (I’ve been writing a lot about addiction recovery lately, if you haven’t noticed), I’m going to take a quick moment to share with you some of my recent articles and blog posts that have gone up on different sites. These are my personal favorites from 2017, so if you haven’t read them yet, take a look.
Before we get to it: a CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS…I am seeking poetry about any subject related to domestic violence, trauma, addiction, PTSD, or mental health in any aspect. I am going to be putting together a post with a collection of poetry written by my readers, other mental health bloggers, and (hopefully) YOU. Yes–you! I will be accepting these through November 15. Please send your submissions to email@example.com. You may send as many as you’d like, but just know that unless they are very short (like haiku short) I will only be able to publish one per author. Looking forward to reading your mental health poetry.
I’m going to make a somewhat embarrassing admission. Well, it would be embarrassing if most people did not already know it about me. Ever since I was a wee gal, I have wanted to be famous. Specifically, a famous writer. Sure, I have entertained fantasies of being a rock star, or an Oscar-winning actress. On my especially bad days, I’ve contemplated what it would be like to be an infamous serial killer. But my dream has pretty consistently been rich famous writer.
I know, it’s a very difficult dream. Especially when you add the “rich” in there. I think it may actually be easier to gain recognition as a writer than it is to a make a comfortable living as a writer. But dreams are dreams. For better of for worse, we all have our big shiny pie-in-the-sky aspirations. Being a famous writer is mine–don’t get me wrong. I definitely have other motivations for writing what I’m writing these days. Reporting on stigmatized populations is not the most surefire route to fame or fortune…regardless of the practicality though, I’ve had big dreams since childhood.
I have not yet accomplished my dream of being a rich famous writer, in case you were wondering. But I have accomplished some success with my writing, which is a start! Betty’s Battleground was recently ranked number 26 on Feedspot’s list of top 75 PTSD blogs! HealthyPlace, which I also write for, was ranked #2. Pretty sweet! Writing for VICE was definitely a bucket list item; I just turned in my third assignment for their health sciences channel. I’ve had two widely circulated articles on Vox, both of which landed my subsequent radio spots. One of them showed up in my treatment counselor’s inbox as the title post for a mental health & addiction e-newsletter. I’m paying my half of the rent with my writing. Interesting people with blue checks by their names are following me on Twitter. There are still no guarantees on that fame, but it looks like I’m on the road to some form of success.
Problem is, this all doesn’t feel half as awesome as I expected it to. And it’s definitely because of my damn PTSD.