Who am I? Reflections in a Broken Mirror

Dr. Susan Ridley

Abstract


Who am I? Reflections in a Broken Mirror video, was a creative exploration into identity using the mirror as a tool for self-reflection. Through the creative process of deconstructing (breaking the mirror and removing the shards), and reconstructing (putting the shards back together again), the mirror became a tangible reflection of an existential crisis. Through this creative exploration I realized that the badge of honor ”˜survivor’ was not enough, a conclusion consistent with other research into childhood abuse. This terminology does not recognize or incorporate other aspects of one’s life and sense of self. While survivor identity has a place in the process of healing by celebrating personal strengths and community with others who have had similar traumatic experiences, it is a stigmatized identity that is constricting and closely associated with abuse. It is important to acknowledge the multiple roles we play and the rich diversity of life experiences, and to use traumatic life experiences as a potential catalyst for new insights and transformation.

Keywords: existential crisis, self-reflection, identity, art therapy, abuse, mirror


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