Wednesday, September 20, 2023

On Having Two Careers

 Hi. I know, long time no post.

I've wanted to write a blog for a while, just that I have two main parts of my life in the public eye: being a writer and the job I got into as a therapist. Yes, I have two jobs, if you're new here. I'm just used to working 24/7 and feeling guilty if I'm not, and I graduated with my MA in summer of July 2021. Taking a day off from work is quite guilt-inducing for me, but I have to remind myself I can have rest. Well, I'm changing jobs right now, from an addiction treatment center to an eating disorder inpatient center.

my author head shot, possibly a
headshot for my therapist profile?
by Jerry Winnett Grindhouse Photography

Addiction treatment has taught me a lot about counseling as my first job after grad school. I've learned about empathy, which is a basic of providing therapy for people, even though I thought I was great at empathy before. Man, what a trip! I've had to learn how to reign in my politics when treating clients, too. It's not my job to tell someone what to do or what to believe or how to vote. My job is to help my clients explore aspects of themselves they've never been allowed to before, things like a relationship with a partner that was abusive, but is still in their lives, or feeling betrayed and mistreated by God or their higher power-- allowing them to explore that in a safe place. I've also never been in a career where I had to put self-care as a priority-- and my supervisors actually were concerned about it. Burnout is a real thing to watch out for as a therapist and counselor. I'm going into working for an eating disorder clinic and I don't know all the challenges I'll face here as a clinician. But the structure will be quite different and I'll be developing different therapy modalities that I haven't had a chance to yet in this current population.

I'm not naming the treatment centers I work for on this blog, because I don't feel that they belong here, but if you really wanted to search the internet and find out, you easily could. My internet persona is quite silly, but one thing I was faced with during the process of becoming a therapist was do I keep my digital profile completely private or do I let it all hang out? I am political, and I recognized early on that it's a fool's errand to try to hide that. I take part in political protests and events and I am a part of a political party at the local and state level. My clients will see that, even if I try to hide it. I decided to be a therapist who doesn't hide themselves on their digital footprint.

This also means I'm going to be creating a website for my other career as a Marriage and a Family Counselor/Therapist. I have no doubt that if my patients google me, they'll find my social media, this website, and HOME. I need to make a new website to balance it out, so that will be coming soon! I can't wait to show it to you.

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