This reading provided me with a tangible way of incorporating healing into traditional classroom settings and curriculum. More importantly, however, it provoked the question that I want to explore further in my 1-page write-up: How can I join the discourse of writing and healing? Or rather, how can I enter this discourse to mediate healing through writing? It's a career path that has become increasingly appealing to me and I want to use the rest of my time in this course researching what I need to do to logistically enter this field of emotional literacy through writing.
Berman's experience constructing a class for healing was a trial and error creation from scratch. He had to take numerous precautions to make sure he was not liable for worsening mental illness by clearly stating that his class was not an attempt or substitution for mental health counseling. He also had to warn his students that the material in his course may be triggering and for students to take the necessary actions if they react negatively. Berman's choice of making his students' diaries optional and anonymous was a great choice conducive for self-exploration in a no-pressure, self-driven manner, a manner that ultimately proved more beneficial than had it been required. He found a way to make his class focused on the writing, the stories being told, and the effort of his students, rather than attempting to make sense of their stories or trying to adopt the role of a therapist. For most students, including Jon, simply feeling heard was enough motivation to further his understanding about his childhood and family secrets.