Helping professions - or just my false need to satisfy others

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johnram

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Hi,



Wasnt sure where to post this, but given i havent done a proper introduction, thought i may add it here.



I am very confused.....my parents used me in many ways, and made me fulfil their needs.  I worry about repeating that past via getting into a helping profession (therapist, charitable work), which is what allures me, but it may be because i have never and still dont know how to recognise what i want out of life, as i also became the caretaker for my siblings for many years - i.e. caretaking is all i know...perhaps



however, my grandparents were also involved in helping professions, and i saw good in that, and was around people who did good for humanity growing up, and having spent my working life so far in more traditional career, i have found it unsatisfying. 



I may have just done too much self help reading / therapy, and have stopped myself from pursuing something i may really love, or it could be my history



i find it hard to split this all up now, and know what is me and my desires



any thoughts would be appreciated



thank you




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Three Roses

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Re: Helping professions - or just my false need to satisfy others
« Reply #1 on: April 09, 2019, 03:20:28 PM »
 :wave:

I guess my initial reaction to this is (and I hope this comes across gently, as that's how it's meant), what if every person who wanted to get into the healing professions questioned their motivation to the point where they refrained from pursuing a "calling"? I would wager money that there is not one single mental health professional who hasn't experienced pain in one form or another; if they haven't, how can they understand and have compassion and insight?

I believe the schooling one goes thru in order to become a therapist or whatever includes separating your issues from your patients' troubles. I think it's probably common for therapists to feel drawn to a profession where they can give the help that they themselves needed but were denied, for whatever reason. As long as you're not out there trying to rescue everyone without looking at your own stuff, I think you're probably in good company. Imo.  :)

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johnram

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Re: Helping professions - or just my false need to satisfy others
« Reply #2 on: April 09, 2019, 04:08:06 PM »
I really like your response

and its soemthing i come to often

there are enough people out there being selfish and enough people who dont care for others, that for whatever reason its in me, i should go with it

and you are right, the courses make you learn how to split out issues to do with you versus your client, and how to deal with it when that doesnt work

something will change, but i need to fix myself a bit more .... recognising the tag of cPTSD really helps,. as for years i treated addiction, depression, apathy etc as singular problems, but the cPTSD makes it clearer

anyway, off topic
i appreciate your comments, i like the challenge

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Boatsetsailrose

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Re: Helping professions - or just my false need to satisfy others
« Reply #3 on: April 10, 2019, 07:54:18 PM »
Hi John ram
Thanks for sharing. it seems very healthy that you are exploring your motives for going into a helping profession and giving it consideration.
I was conditioned into caretaking from a young age. Went on to do childcare and then in my 30s trained as a psych nurse which I did for 10 yrs until I was brought to my knees with my cptsd  last year. I've now left the profession and it was the right thing for me to do.
I think in terms of working out if this is driven by conditioning or not. I'd say from all the colleagues I've worked with nurses, allied health professionals and therapy staff many do come from some history esp family of origin that  has contributed to shaping  them to be empathic and sensitive to the needs of others, not always but mostly I'd say. I think the defining factor is how much work a person has done and continues to do on themselves. If the need is driven out of Co dependency ie let me fix you so I don't have to look to hard at myself then clearly that is imbalanced and serves to fall short for the individual leading to burnout etc. In hindsight I was doing work on myself but still in food addiction and when I put that down that was when I started collapsing. If a person goes into a profession and sounds like for you it will be a bit later in life with eyes open and healed enough then could be a good option. I think in the end it all. Boils down to a person's self worth, integration and level of mental health from the off set that will act as insurance for safeguarding.
For me I am so empathic too much so really to work in a helping profession such as mental health nursing and my low self worth with a responsible, power slightly ego environment was never going to suit me.

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johnram

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Re: Helping professions - or just my false need to satisfy others
« Reply #4 on: April 11, 2019, 07:47:29 AM »
Thank you Boatsetsailrose (fascinating handle)

I can relate to what you say
its why i didnt go down the road of aid / charity work many a year back - the lyric "how can one drowning man save another", is what helped me / stopped me

however this want to help is strong, but i think, i will focus on myself for a while longer, as i have a lot of healing to do and really glad i have the complex / developmental trauma diagnosis now, as for years i wasted time in therapy treating singular issues - addiction, depression, etc.....

Sorry to hear you had to change careers, but sometimes having that moment helps force you to address things?? is that fair? i understand thats never how it feels...i am somewhat in that space now, deciding whether i can handle my old work, or i need more focused healing

i appreciate your words, they help me navigate these things

thank you

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Boatsetsailrose

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Re: Helping professions - or just my false need to satisfy others
« Reply #5 on: April 11, 2019, 08:27:16 AM »
Thanks John ram
I've loved leaving nursing and not one day has gone by when I've doubted. It clearly shows me I did it through conditioning. If  I would have followed my heart when I left school. I would have pursued something in the arts. This would have required the right climate. Still I enjoy those things now and develop in painting and dance.
Since I've left the NHS and stopped giving out in that way the energy has come right back to me as I nurture myself and get support from many others including a mental health nurse (from the trust I used to work for) so the universe definitely has helped me to be the patient and my own best friend :) I'm less co dependent on others issues these days.
But as you say
Quote 'this want to help is strong' and with a sensitive and empathic heart giving  the climate for helping it seems really sensible to heal enough first and see where that need then comes from. when our individual need to help ourselves and let ourselves by helped is carried out enough I think we know intuitively if it's right. I've learnt now that being a successful aid to someone else in their struggle/crisis is best served by people who have healthy boundaries, good enough resistance and use their head to be empathic rather than a heightened nervous system that feels every squeek in the floorboards. People need a rock not a mushy blob :)

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Boatsetsailrose

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Re: Helping professions - or just my false need to satisfy others
« Reply #6 on: April 11, 2019, 08:30:12 AM »
I've been blessed to get disability benefits in the UK so I've got true 'time out' from the whole working race. I'm happy to share my experience with anyone here who is in the UK and is applying for benefits...