Sunday, July 27, 2014

Poetry Therapy?! Bibliotherapy and Other Such Therapies

A poetry group I led Feb. 13, years ago

Last week my theme was about different types of healing, and I'll continue on that vein, albeit somewhat differently.

There are many - I love this about the United States that they are ahead in some ways - forms of therapies that I heard about in my early 20's. And when I did, not sure how I came about that, I wanted to be and/or do all of them! After all, creativity and expression are important to me and that's what they are about to a certain degree.

One of these forms of therapy which I love the concept of is known as "bibliotherapy." Bibliotherapy is an expressive therapy that uses an individual's relationship to the content of books and poetry and other written words as therapy. Bibliotherapy is often combined with writing therapy. It has been shown to be effective in the treatment of depression. ..." ( Isn't that neat?! Well, I absolutely LOVE it, love that concept.

I'm not going to expand on that or any of the other therapies, at least not at this time, as they are not my area of expertise, and also because this blog post will be way too long or too many posting parts and I do not have the energy or interest to do that. (Truth be told, I feel rather "blogged out." If that isn't a term, it is now. I just invented it!)

Other related forms of therapy that intrigue me, in no particular order, are art therapy, dance/movement therapy, drama therapy, music therapy, and expressive arts therapy. In my early 20's when I came across this information, not sure how, I wanted to be either an art therapist or a dance therapist. I believe I didn't come across music therapy as a form of healing, similar with sound healing; both of these would have appealled to me greatly.

Unfortunately, I was not well versed in any of these therapies, never having been groomed for any of them as a youngster. Too bad!

Even though drama therapy captures my interest greatly - I think it could be fun - one of my EXA courses was on psychodrama which is quite different in its focus ( And though I would have loved to be a music therapist and/or sound therapist, I instead studied dance/movement therapy and also EXpressive Arts Therapy (known as EXA Therapy for short as EAT didn't quite cut it.) ;)

Pastel drawing of my emotional realm (my inner passionate fire)

Expressive arts appeals to me as there is an eclectic assortment of modalities within the expressive arts as you can see from my profile (right-hand side of my blog). My definition is as follows, "Expressive arts is a form of (psycho)therapy using a variety of creative and artistic modalities that can transform a client's experiences to one of empowerment. It is the process, not the end product/result that is important. It bypasses the cognitive mind, allowing a client to explore and discover a new perspective in coming to terms with a problem or in solving a problem."

Wikipedia has a great definition and brief summary:

I am a non-practicing EXA Therapist. I actually avoid the term therapist as it doesn't feel right, at least for me. A therapist is "a person skilled in a particular kind of therapy." Psychologists, psychotherapists, psychoanalysts, psychiatrists, counsellors, and the like are forms of therapists.

No wonder I prefer not to be affiliated with them! I think of many years of therapy with a psychologist, counsellor, or psychotherapist; Sigmund Freud concerning psychoanalyst, and medication in terms of a psychiatrist. My preference is the term facilitator which I have always admired. It also seems not to be so 'superior' a term.

What I felt intuitively before entering the EXA Therapy program was that I would use my learnings in a different way, my own way, in my unique/crazy/signature style and I believe that it has to do with my alternative choir-to-be. That was confirmed to me by someone who did an angel card reading for me.

That is my hope and inspiration, at times strong and other times fading as time has marched and is marching on.

Have you heard of any of these therapies before? If so, have you studied and/or been a recipient of any of them? Did it allow you to express yourself and thus be more of you?


  1. You seem to be so well informed on these various therapies. I just learn something new every time I visit your blog. Nice :)

    1. Thanks Vinodini! You brought a big smile to my lips! ;) Though, I'm not an expert on them and I have MANY interests, my main passions are the creative and expressive arts, I think that is why. <3