“Tears are words that need to be written.”
~ Paulo Coelho
The healing power of the written word is at the core of scriptotherapy. Writing has a restorative element to it that can be beneficial on many levels.
The process of exchanging intentional words with a therapist can help you:
- gain insight
- see new perspectives
- be thoughtful in how you contemplate your life
- declutter your mind
- tap into your inner wisdom that promotes healing solutions
- make sense of your past
- gain clarity for your future
What is Scriptotherapy?
Scriptotherapy is the bridge between expressive writing and in-person therapy sessions.
Using email in a secure, HIPAA-compliant and confidential client portal, we will use therapeutic writing as an analytical process to address what’s bringing you to therapy—whether that be anxiety, depression, parenting concerns, codependency issues, relationship problems, negativity, trauma, fear, anger, conflict, etc.
I will respond to your message just as I would if we were meeting in person by:
- asking clarifying questions to help us both dig deeper to find the root of the problem
- providing you with observations that can lead to change
- teaching you new coping skills
- suggesting additional resources
- assigning homework if/when appropriate
- highlighting areas for self-exploration
Scriptotherapy can be a convenient alternative or adjunct to traditional in-person therapy for those whose schedules don’t allow for consistent therapy sessions.
Why is Scriptotheraphy Effective?
Due to the nature of the written word, writing encourages you to be deliberate in your words, helping you think through a situation in a way that is more intentional than speaking or thinking does. In contrast to verbal conversations, which change and take on new meanings as they occur, the permanence of the written word demands critical thought and insight as you write.
When we apply writing to therapy, there are many benefits. In-person sessions are sometimes laden with distractions and many attempts, on both therapist and client’s parts, to try to explain something in a clear way. Finding the right language to describe a situation can be validating and cathartic—and writing can be a more direct avenue for the correct words.
Research has shown that:
Writing Benefits your Mood
Writing also helps to alleviate the negative effects of stress and depression.
Writing also helps you elaborate on your thoughts. When your thoughts are staring back at you from the screen, you’re forced to analyze your thoughts in a way that is hard with a spoken conversation.
Writing Aids in Emotional Healing
Writing Helps You Heal Physically
Writing May Improve your Immune System
Studies have proven that people who wrote about past traumas strengthened their immune cells, called T-lymphocytes, and had fewer health-center visits for six months after writing.
A recent study suggested that expressive writing may even improve immune system functioning, although it may need to be sustained for the health benefits to continue (Murray, 2002).
Writing Can Illuminate Meaning
It can also lead to important insights about yourself and your environment that may be difficult to determine without focused writing (Tartakovsky, 2015).
Writing Can Increase Motivation
Writing Can Boost Your Productivity
Writing Promotes Problem Solving
Writing Helps Convey Complexity
How do I get started with scriptotherapy?
2. Once we agree to work together, I will send you all the necessary paperwork to get started.
3. We will meet in person or over video-chat for your first session. While emailing back and forth can be an alternative to in-person sessions, I do require that we meet face-to-face during the first session to get to know each other.
Can I do scriptotherapy instead of in-person sessions?
Can I do scriptotherapy in addition to in-person sessions?
What would be different from you emailing me in response to my problems and my best friend/mom/mentor?
How do I know what to write?
What about confidentiality?
Are there reasons I shouldn’t consider scriptotherapy?
If you are currently struggling with self-harm, thoughts of ending your own life, or are in an unsafe environment, in-person counseling is a more supportive option for you. I cannot provide a higher level of care or emergency services via scriptotherapy.
What are the limitations to scriptotherapy?
What is the cost of scriptotherapy?
After that, each emailed response is billed at $100 per hour, which includes the time I spend reading your email, reviewing your relevant history, analyzing assessments, and the time necessary for writing a thoughtful response.