Does Fiction Matter? What I Learned By One Question

Reading and writing fiction alleviated trauma and mental health issues

Photo By: Andrea Duran

Childhood and Literature

My love for literature was born from arduous loneliness as a child and a deep need for socialization. My brother and I grew up in a single parent home with a mother who worked 12 hours a day and spent her evenings recovering from her recent divorce away from the home. Needless to say, my brother and I felt abandoned at five-years-old, by parents who married too young.

Young Adult and Mental Health Issues

At 12, I was diagnosed with clinical depression. This was the result of our unstable and downright anarchic home environment. Yelling, shouting, and flinging objects around were the daily ritual of our chaotic, unhappy home. Something I never perceived as abnormal until I left.

High School and Toxic Relationships

At the immature age of 14, I thought I found my cure in the real world, away from books. This messiah was an abusive, thriving alcoholic who sang terribly in a punk-rock band. At the time, I hadn’t realized it was abuse. In a home where chaos and destruction was expected, and sometimes encouraged, my boyfriend’s behavior was not uncommon.

Photo By: Andrea Duran

Conclusion: Making the World a Better Place With Fiction

My interest is primarily with fiction, though I am becoming comfortable with non-fiction and memoir pieces. I take my real experiences and perspectives and insert them into a fictional world within my short stories and novel. Like many others, I’ve dealt with a variety of issues from psychological and physical abuse, bullying, sexual assault, substance abuse issues, and mental health issues.

Substance abuse counselor with a creative writing degree and psych degree. Writer of fiction, mental health, and self-development.