By: Faiza Yousaf
My journey into blogging started through, what was at that time, a fairly traumatic event in my life. The end of my marriage as a result of infidelity led me on a path to find others who had gone through a similar experience and who understood the emotional roller coaster I was experiencing. Like many of this generation, I turned to my trusted friend google and looked for other people’s experiences online. Whilst it was slightly helpful, I noticed there were no Muslim or Pakistani women speaking about their experiences who, like me, had religion and culture to navigate. It prompted me to start my first blog where I wrote, under a pseudonym, about my pain, anger and ultimately my healing.
My second blog, ‘Life of Fai’ was published in April 2018 under my real name and I amalgamated pieces from my first blog into it. I made the decision to go public after the countless emails I would receive from people reaching out and decided it was important to use my voice and encourage others in theirs. I wanted to step away from this culture of shame where it is considered unbecoming to talk about divorce, love and even harmful cultural issues.
Although my background is not in writing (I’m a pharmacist), I realised through the six years in which I have been writing how much I enjoy it. What started off as catharsis and a way to heal developed into a passion. Although I don’t actively seek income from writing opportunities as I consider it a passion which my own blog fulfils; I have been lucky enough to have been approached by various organisations to write for them
Writing has now led me to pursue a post-grad in counselling and psychotherapy. Since I started writing publicly in 2018, there was a change in how people approached me. I had braced myself for criticism instead wonderful things were happening. I had opened my life up and in return, people whom I never knew on a personal level, started opening up to me. I felt a deep sense of honour that they could share extremely personal and private aspects of their life with me. It cemented the idea for me that counselling and talk therapies can truly be liberating for a person’s well-being. In a couple of years, I hope to be qualified as a counsellor – aiming to empower others to own their stories.