Writing can heal. Some people discover this through therapy (or perhaps an online writing course like Write Over Divorce), and some people make it happen all by themselves.
Lotta Dann was a wife-and-mother with a perfect life and a drinking problem. One day she decided privately, suddenly, independently, urgently, to stop drinking alcohol. She didn’t seek help or join AA or go to rehab or tell a friend or consult a doctor. This enormous decision was her little secret.
Lotta did just one thing besides decide: she started a daily blog to document her first year of not-drinking, and called it Mrs D is going without. And that one spontaneous act became an extraordinary source of strength.
How blogging about sobriety helped Mrs D
Right from the start:
- by recording her decision, she made it visible and impossible to deny
- writing helped her to confront one day at a time without getting overwhelmed
- she could encourage herself and remind herself of why she had stopped
- blogging daily imposed a daily discipline
- writing enabled her to explore and express a torrent of ideas and feelings.
Then something happened that surprised Mrs D: other people found her blog. An online community sprang up around her. Other people seemed to be experiencing her struggle vicariously, began to support her — and in a way, to depend on her. She had started alone, but now she was far from alone in her battle for sobriety.
How Mrs D now helps other recovering alcoholics
I’ve read the book of the blog and it’s a brave, vulnerable and honest story.
I salute Lotta Dann for her courage. I am amazed at the way she has used writing as therapy, meditation, cognitive training and human support.
She now uses her wisdom to help others online and elsewhere.