The Highs and Lows of Being a Therapist - By Brittany Wingfield
Friends... I am feeling so thankful right now, it is like I just won the lottery. Cheesy? Maybe. But I am just being honest. Being a Therapist has its highs and lows, and sometimes the lows are low. I think that many people think that since I am a Therapist that I have my life all together and there is nothing that goes wrong in my life. Let me remind you, I am human too. I am not saying this to gain sympathy, but to bring light to the reality that I am simply human living life with other humans.
I strive to be the best therapist that I can be and sometimes I disappoint myself. My expectations for myself are too high. Have you ever felt this way? It is a struggle for me to be vulnerable, because sometimes the expectations to be perfect and have everything together get to me too. My life isn't perfect, nor am I... Not even close. I think though that vulnerability is important because it is important that the people I work with know that I am imperfect too, and I struggle too. Struggling is okay. I try and live my life in the same way that I encourage my clients to live theirs, so I think it is absolutely important that I model what it looks like to have a bad day and take a deep breath in.... and out and accept it for what it is. Bad days are allowed, despite what we tell ourselves.
Therefore, I am coming to you and saying, man there have been some hard things throughout my career that have been super discouraging and it is in those times that you wonder if you are doing the right thing, but it is times like last night that humble me and bring me back to reality in reminding me why I do my job. That everything doesn't have to be perfect in order for me to make a difference. These are such nice reminders, right!?
It isn't about having the perfect number of people walk into my office, it isn't about succeeding at EVERYTHING I do, it isn't about being the perfect fit for everyone, it is simply about living life with people and bringing awareness to tough subjects like Sexual Abuse. And coping with the fact that the external world is completely out of our control and all that matters is how we respond to the obstacles that have fallen before us.
Did you know that every 8 minutes in the U.S. a child experiences sexual abuse? Every. 8. minutes. This scares the crap out of me!! This is happening ALL around us and if we continue to cover our eyes and pretend its not happening, we are only encouraging keeping this subject taboo. Honestly, this is something that I just cannot agree to do. It maybe feels better to be naive and act like its not happening. But the reality, the hard truth, is that it is happening all around us. If we do not try and bring awareness to it, we are doing a HUGE disservice to those who are experiencing it EVERY day and desperately NEED love and support. I am so passionate about bringing awareness to this subject, if you can't tell. I held a class last night for Loved Ones and I was so encouraged to see how many people came out on a Friday night to meet at a library and refuse to be silent about this issue, but to educate themselves and learn better how to support their Loved One who is a Survivor of Sexual Abuse. Is this cool or what?!
These are times when I feel so excited and am re-reminded that I am a Therapist for a reason. Because I LOVE people and I want to help support those who are hurting and so desperate for relief from the gut wrenching pain. That, my dear friends, makes ALL of the hard days so so worth it!
What are you feeling thankful for right now?
I would love to hear from you in the comments below!