"Kirjoittaminen on tie minuun, minusta sinuun" : ryhmämuotoinen kirjoittaminen ja metaforien merkitys psykoosia sairastavien kirjallisuusterapiassa
Published inScriptum. Creative writing reseach journal
This is a study on the significance of group poetry therapy and the use of metaphors by people diagnosed with psychosis. The data includes seven client interviews, poems and other texts written in the poetry therapy sessions, and my research diary; it was collected from a group I personally directed for one year. The research aimed to answer these questions: 1) what are the most meaningful and therapeutic aspects in group poetry therapy from the point of view of the client? 2) What is the per- sonal significance of therapeutic metaphor and poetic language for people who experience psychosis? 3) What kind of poetry therapy model is suitable for people with schizophrenia and other psychoses? The analysis was carried out using a grounded theory approach (Strauss & Corbin 1990). The results showed that the most significant therapeutic fac- tors of the poetry therapy process were social interaction, sa- fety and written self-expression (also as a group). Writing in a group setting, especially communal writing, had many positive effects on the clients. It allowed them to experience life’s worth raising their hope. Metaphors and procedural writing made it possible to discuss difficult experiences. Self-confidence impro- ved thanks to the interactive tasks, as well as interactive skills themselves. Writing was experienced as an art form too, with a value in itself besides its utility as a therapy. Poetry therapy has a proven clinical utility for people with schizophrenia. It helps to test reality, to process metaphors, to find words for feelings and to conceive the self (Kähmi 2013, 50). Metaphors aid in writing about painful things, and a safe group gives people a chance to socialize and empathize. I argue that poetry therapy would be more efficient, however, in preventing psychoses. For some people writing is a better way to express oneself than speaking, so it should be available to them in therapy. Poetry therapy could also have a central role in dealing with chronic problems. Giving a voice to hidden feelings and thoughts can produce the kind of strong experien- ces that a mental patient´s life often lacks, including the joy of living. ...