Have you, or someone you know, been affected by benzodiazepines, Z-drugs, or thienodiazepines? Do you feel you have a story to tell but nobody to listen? Would you like to share your benzo journey with others on the Benzo Free website or podcast? Well, we’d love to hear it.
If you have listened to the podcast, then you know that we share a benzo story almost every episode and I encourage our listeners to submit them for this purpose. Unfortunately, our reservoir of stories has been getting a bit thin lately. Thus, I thought I might post this request on our blog since not all readers are listeners, and vice versa.
Not only do we share benzo stories on the podcast, but we will also be including them on our website. Next month, we will add a brand new section, Benzo Stories, to the website as a resource for those seeking connection and information.
Now, sharing your story isn’t right for everyone, and the last thing we want is for you to feel pressured into doing so. Please, keeping your experience private is your right and we do not want to infringe. But, if and when you do feel it is time to share, we’d love to hear it.
And this also includes updates. If you have shared your story with us in the past and have an update, we’re all ears. Much like your initial stories, we will share these on both, the podcast and website.
Why should you share your story? Well, I see three key benefits:
1) Helps You Process and Validate Your Experience
I can’t tell you the number of times when I’ve looked back on my years with benzos and wondered, “did that really happen?” Or, “was it really that bad?” I was lucky enough to have learned the benefits of journaling throughout my life and my benzo journals became a detailed reminder of what I really went through. When I read those books, I am quickly reminded of the true suffering these pills inflicted on my life.
When I wrote Benzo Free and launched the blog and podcast, I shared my story. Publicly. Very publicly. And it has helped my healing immensely. I haven’t regretted it one bit.
In addition to being a mental scrapbook, sharing your story can also help you process the trauma. Our minds are already hindered by the drug — or the withdrawal from the drug — and we commonly forget aspects of this experience. Writing down your symptoms, emotions, and thoughts helps your mind process what you’ve experienced.
Even if you don’t submit your story for others to read or hear, write it out for yourself. You will thank yourself later.
2) Provides Information and Connection for Others
Do you remember when you first learned of what was happening to your mind and body? Or, if you are a caretaker, tried to understand what your loved one was going through? Thousands of people are in that same position and want to know what is going on with them. They want a connection. And they need information.
Benzo stories provide a beacon in the benzo fog to help those in need find support and information. Sharing your story with others gives back to the benzo community.
3) Creates an Archive
So many people in the benzo community are working tirelessly to make a difference by raising awareness, improving education, and supporting those in dependence and withdrawal. Sharing your story on Benzo Free, or other sites and blogs, helps us all get our message heard.
At Benzo Free, we are accumulating as many stories as we can find. Stories about benzo dependence and withdrawal, stories from caregivers, stories for medical professionals who have worked with benzo patients, and many others. This narrative archive is evidence. In combination with research and statistics, these stories make a difference.
How to Submit Your Story?
If you wish to submit your story for the Benzo Free podcast and/or website, there are two options:
Complete our Feedback Form at https://easinganxiety.com/feedback.
Record your story in your own voice and send it to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you send in your story via our feedback form, please make sure to check the permissions box which gives us permission to share your story. If you submit it via email, please note that you give Benzo Free permission to share your story publicly within the email text.
Benzo Free only shares your first name ( or nickname if you choose) and location (city, state, country) when we share a story. No personal contact info is ever released. You may also share your story anonymously if you choose. If you don’t wish to share your story at Benzo Free, there are many other organizations who also collect these narratives and would be happy to have your input.
We like to hear stories of all lengths, short ones and long ones. Most stories we share are usually between 3 – 13 paragraphs. While we attempt to share most of the stories we receive, we cannot guarantee that we will share all stories submitted on the podcast or website. Stories submitted are subject to editing for time or content when needed.
Thanks to all of those who have already shared their experiences with us. I am so very grateful.
Keep calm, taper slowly, and take care of yourself, D :)