Communication throughout the wilderness therapy experience can feel very different for most families in treatment. At home, communicating is as straightforward as talking around the dinner table or sending your child a text, and in residential settings, phone calls typically happen a few times each week. In wilderness, however, the majority of communication happens through letter writing. In and of itself, this can be a drastic change for most families, and for this week’s blog I wanted to touch on one of the biggest shifts I navigate with families regarding the letter writing process.
Viewing entries posted in 2022
When I write, “being a lightning rod,” what I mean is being willing to step into the path of rage, anger, and the intensity of however many kilowatts of emotion our loved ones are feeling. It can be terribly painful work; however, it can also be incredibly powerful if one has the bandwidth to do so. I do want to name at the onset of this piece, that there are times where it is absolutely unsafe to do this, so it is critical to check-in with yourself about your capacity and desire to place yourself in the path of someone else’s pain. Some of the most empowering moments I have ever seen in this work are those in which a caregiver has named their boundary, described their limit, or said sorry, knowing that there was no extra room in their cup. I have the utmost respect for individuals who can be clear and loving with their limits. If that is the case, this writing, in this particular moment, may not be for you. My focus today is for those of you who are being confronted with your loved ones’ pain, and who do have the bandwidth and willingness to receive some part of that.