Thursday, September 29, 2016

Day 2541 - How writers can help readers to feel less alone

Behind every challenge is an opportunity to help others.

A few months ago I met with a client who has MS.  She had struggled with her diagnosis but was positive about moving forward to feel less defined by her disease.

As she faces a long road through therapy towards a new normal, I suggested she start a blog about the journey to help her heal.  Being able to share our challenges not only allows us to "get it out" and make sense of it, but it means we also have the ability to help others feel less alone if they've found themselves down a similar road.

Just this week I was approached by the mum of an 8 year old boy who has recently been diagnosed with an auto immune disease.  This diagnosis will change his appearance which is difficult for anyone, but particularly so for children.

They came to me because he had the idea to write a book about it.  The book was originally written to try and explain his health problem to his friends and classmates.  If we look beyond his sphere of influence to the thousands of other children who have a similar diagnosis, his book may well become more than just a way for him to cope; it could become a way to help others cope too.

This morning I finished editing his book and I'm delighted to have been invited on his journey.  It's not a journey you'd wish upon someone, but for this young man who is already on it, it's great to see he's embraced the opportunity to light the way.

His book reminded me that every single one of us has a chance to help others feel supported.

Our writing can't promise to help fix the problems of the world, but it can definitely be an opportunity to help people feel less alone.

Have you read a book or blog post that has helped you through a challenge?

What challenges have you had that may be an opportunity to help others?

A problem shared is a problem halved. Let's all help carry the load today. 


  1. your amazing thankyou so much x

  2. Beautiful and thought provoking post, Leanne.

    I am so inspired by how you've used your talents and skills to help.

    SSG xxx

  3. A sad but beautiful and positive post Leanne. I agree that as bloggers/writers have a chance to help others. I hope that my blog does that - even for just one person would be awesome. I feel sad for the boy with auto immune disease but also very impressed that at only 8 years of age he has seen the benefits in writing a book about his experience. I hope your client with MS does start a blog. I'm sure she will find it therapeutic and as you say - it will end up being so helpful for others travelling the same (or similar) path. xo

  4. Oh definitely. Sometimes reading a blog post makes you feel less alone, validates your position on an issue or opens your mind to new ideas. Immensely valuable. Words are powerful. I am so impressed that an 8 year old has written a book- amazing! And good on you for helping him!

  5. What a lovely young boy, to know the value in a book about it.

  6. What a lovely post (even though no-one could think a child getting a diagnosis of this is lovely) because it shows just how powerful the written word shared can be! Leanne you have a gift of helping others and you do with such humility. Thank you for what you do to help many. My blog began at one of the lowest times in my life when we thought my hub had PD and possible dementia and I needed to feel connected in some way to a world that was no shrunken as my existence was then. I had also stopped my teaching role the year before and I had little social contact other than with our small family. Blogging gave me new friends and so many I have since met at conferences and get togethers and through my initiative of getting out there again. Our story is that hub was misdiagnosed but he still has a myriad of other issues but we have our relationship rock solid and that is the best gift.

  7. Oh yes, and I think that's one of the magic things about the online world. When I had my diet blog I was very blunt and honest. And so many times people would respond saying that was exactly how they felt. I'm sure it helps us feel less alone. Even at our weirdest there are others who can identify or who are worse off... something we never knew before we started to share so much!

  8. What a privilege for you to be part of a special journey, Leanne. And so generous of you to offer your editing skills. There are so many books that have helped dig myself out from loneliness and sadness.


I love hearing your thoughts! Keep them rolling in :)

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