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THE MAKING OF A COUNSELOR This is the story of a life time struggle after a near death illness that left me at six years old handicapped. It is the story of a struggle to try to regain what was lost or to try and compensate, to try with much effort to do the things others were doing with ease. This struggle lead me to be a counselor and to help others with or without handicap to live happier and reach out to do more. It is the story of unsung hero's that helped me.
Start at the bottom and work your way up to the lastest post.
|Posted on July 24, 2013 at 12:10 PM||comments (1238)|
Beliefs need to use all of our altruistic instincts for group survival. If our group is handicapped so are we. WWII was a very handicapping experience and took the lives of around sixty million people. The group handicapped them to death. People had seen the death and destruction from WWI and felt trapped in the treaties that resulted. The treaties handicapped the economic and future of Germany. They felt they had to fight back to regain their land. They also were at their emotional wits end. This put many people into Lower Nature Thinking, thinking for survival. They seen the destruction from WWI, felt desperation and anger, and a belief system began to develop from the Lower Nature , a raciest system of thinking, that would justify to them where they were going. What followed was an aggressive solution. They began to listen to people like Hitler and his crew and follow. What followed was the death of near sixty million people, countless animals, and, well, no one may care about the gazillion insects, but they had a holiday eating what little food humans had left. Farming collapsed starving millions of people.
Being a Servant of others, putting ourselves in their shoes, monitoring their reactions so we can help them to also be altruistic and a servant to you too. That is the spirit of building a society, a culture, and cities and nations. We need to stay in our Upper Natures and share what we perceive know, share emotional bonding, share a workable belief systems, and work together to build a society f or a long healthy life. Life is learning how to stay in our Upper Natures and smoothing the way for self and others to build great things that help the 'group' survive and enjoy life. When we are in our Upper Natures we are not handicapped, only faster or slower then others but on the right track.
|Posted on July 4, 2013 at 10:45 AM||comments (360)|
The third step of the brain is to take what has been perceived, what has been feared and desired and make a plan to avoid or approach the impending situation. It takes a lot of knowledge of the environment, tactics, and possible outcomes to make a plan that will work smoothly and yield results we want.
There are different ways to organize our knowledge. We may use scientific thinking which works well with concrete details. But for emotions it is harder. We tend to use religions to help us figure out what to do. Religions tend to be time proven solutions that work well. They teach us to control our fears and love our neighbors. That puts our brains in a position to relax more and think clearer then panic and chaos offer.
Beliefs need to address all four stages of the brain: Perception, Emotions, Beliefs, and Actions. Zen Buddhism helps us perceive better, Christianity helps us with fears and love, Philosophy helps us sort out our beliefs, and Islam helps us with humility and patience, Christianity helps with what to do in certain situations. Judaism offers a way of life from how to eat and conduct daily life. Their traditions have developed over thousands of years of being persecuted and surviving.
Some people feel we should discard these ancient beliefs. That would be a mistake. Not only are they a wealth of history they speak to the human brain. They were developed by people for people and give people a framework to live by. What would we replace them with? Science can not address everything. Belief systems are part of us humans. We have popular beliefs, urban myths, Hollywood stories, Disney Land and Micky Mouse. Then there are the beliefs spread by advertisements that set us up to believe we need to buy their products. How many of these products clutter our homes. We almost worship some of them. Some steal and kill for them.
When all four stages of the brain work well we are less handicapped. When one or more stages are neglected we are handicapped.
|Posted on June 12, 2013 at 9:45 PM||comments (57)|
Step two, is to control our fears and increase our love and cooperation with others, to build relationships, businesses, and families. The fear of fear is the greatest of fears. It escalates anxiety which spins out of control and sends us into our Lower Natures of lies, greed, blaming, and bullying. Love and empathy decrease and and we are no longer as creative and productive as we could be.
Fears can be calmed by a better belief system, faith and optimism. Sometimes it does not matter if the faith is false, it leads to calmness and better thinking. But if we invest too much is fantasy that does not teach us how to live we will again crash. Step three will touch on how to pick beliefs.
I can not emphasize too much to be each others servants. Servants are not slaves, they get a wage, they take pride in their work. A good servant anticipates what his employer wants and needs and makes life easier for them, maybe not financially but certainly by making life easier so they can concentrate on building their careers. If we do that for each other life becomes easier as they do it for us too. With less useless and distractive conflict we have more time and energy to concentrate on things that will work. Lower Nature fights get us not where but into trouble. Empathy can guide us into what will work with others.
How do we get empathy? First is humbleness, to admit we are not the all knowing directors of others. Like the twelve steps in Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) we first must admit we have flaws. This will open up our minds and hearts to better observe. Our perceptions will begin to improve, we will better see how others operate, and we will gain wisdom, each in our own way. We will grow in empathy and personal emotional stability.
Basically, next we need to look into our past and see what in our childhood we feared, what was it that plunged us into our Lower Nature, even if it is just blaming others, what made us defensive and unrealistic about who we are. You may want to do this step with writing a biography of "What I wanted to tell my parent(s) or caretakers but was afraid to." Or you may want to consult with a counselor, such as myself, to help guide you to those old nagging fears and wasteful habits. This will free you up to be more empathetic. Lack of empathy and too much fear handicaps us.
Some people are born without the ability to be empathetic. But the next step, Beliefs, can guide them. I will touch on that subject next.
|Posted on May 23, 2013 at 10:40 AM||comments (60)|
How do we improve our perception? It is effected by our emotions, beliefs, and habits. They tell us what to look for. This causes great bias. To improve our perceptions we need to neutralize these for the moment to see, hear, smell, touch, and taste what is really out there and where and in what combinations. Then we will look at how they are interrelated, interact, and change.
Ethnography is the science of observation. It should be used before we jump to a conclusion and spend tons of time and money testing our hypothesis empirically. We may only prove ourselves wrong. Ethnography is the science of coming up with realistic hypotheses. We need to practice ethnographic methods of observation to improve on our perception of our world and others. We basically take count of what we perceive, take down the number of times something happens, when, and where. Then we look at the numbers to see if there is a pattern. And then we see if the pattern predicts what will happen in the future. I will illustrate this with the example below.
When we see a handicapped person our biases kick in. We may wrinkle our faces, stare, and feel something is wrong in the universe. If it is an emotional or intellectual handicap we may feel awkward, superior, or helpless. We may believe they are snobs, or inferior, or superior. We don't know how to act. What if we offend them, or feel they may offend us for being inept at what to do.
I will take my own handicap and walk you through how to understand and assess me. I will start with the first step of perception and move on to emotional, beliefs, and actions, even the lower nature of deception, greed, blaming, and aggression. To be cont…
|Posted on April 26, 2013 at 4:30 PM||comments (102)|
Our brains go through a feedback loop. First we perceive the world though our senses, sight and hearing being in the back and then back sides of the brain. From there it goes to the middle brain where emotions are and we become afraid of or want to approach what we have seen and head. Animals, of course, are mainly looking at if it is to avoid or eat it. Next stop is the frontal lobes where we plan how to avoid or approach. Last it goes to the top of the head where operation of the body is executed, also our sense of touch. Anyway, this loop is repeated over and over. An obsessive compulsive person has a very stung loop, so they see a mess, want to clean it up, plan it, and do it.
To improve our judgement and actions we need to improve on these four stages and balance them out so we are not just looky-loos, drama Kings and Queens, over intellectualize, or act without thinking first. Also, if we feel trapped and in danger the loop is governed by our survival mode. In that case we may deceive ourselves, turn greedy, believe in nonsense, and turn aggressive. I will go over these steps and suggestions to help us be less handicapped.
|Posted on April 18, 2013 at 10:55 PM||comments (59)|
I am going to address how we can improve ourselves and our handicaps or how to get around them and those of our communities. How we can find and nurture our unsung heroes and become one ourselves. The making of a counselor is no different then the making of a productive, growing, creative person. The city is a conglomeration of individuals made up of personalities, groups of various personalities make up our agencies, schools, and businesses.
Every last one of us has handicaps because we and our institutions are not perfect. If we were there would be no handicaps because we would not take advantage of people who are stumbling for a moment, we would not be tripping others and calling them handicapped because we would not have hurtful handicapped hearts. None of us are perfect but we can work at being more healthy and productive. So lets look at what a counselor helps you with, and believe me as they help you it helps them as a person and as a helper. We all need to be doing these things.
|Posted on April 11, 2013 at 10:15 PM||comments (1271)|
Public schools have a real handicap that is severe in the crime neighborhoods. As I said before, the teachers can not mix with the community. If they do they can loose their influence in the classroom because their reputation can go sour. But the non teacher personnel belong to the community. When they get into positions that affect students they can influence the students in a positive or negative way. If it is a well educated community they can be a real asset and help students learn to respect the teachers. But if it is a community with a personality problem that results in too much crime, they can influence the students to be negative towards the teachers, especially if the students are operating somewhat in their lower nature also.
Counseling agencies can have the same problem. The counselors can not mix with the community without being on guard. Other agencies, such as Child Protective Services (CPS) that remove children from the homes, can be very hard on counselors if they mingle with clients and disagree with what CPS is doing. They will accuse the clients of fraternizing and being too loyal and immeshed in the community and so too biased to be trusted and the courts intern will loose trust. But the non counselor personnel can influence the clients and community and their view of the counseling agency. It is very important that the different groups within an organization have meetings and events in which the different groups can communicate properly and get on the same page and give the power back to the professionals that have been trained to help. Also, it helps the teachers and counselors understand the community better and so better know how to help their students and clients. Without such knowledge, crime goes on undetected and unchallenged, in fact, they may flourish better because students and clients loose faith in schools and counseling agencies.
|Posted on April 4, 2013 at 9:20 AM||comments (501)|
Groups of people are made up different personalities and personality disorders. These personalities combine and create a group personality. If the individuals in the group are all antisocial then the group personality is antisocial. If the group is a combination of antisocial and very social people the personality of the group depends on which personality is dominant. Dominance can be from a consensual permission from the others, by their dominant natures, or from fear the leader,installs in others, or as in the military, from legal rights of authority. The combinations are endless but the principle is the same, a group will have a personality that can advance everyone in society, as a scholarly group, or harm everyone as a common street gang often can do.
A city is a group of different community groups and the same can be said, it has a personality. Its different personality traits would be housed in different groups, such as TV and News Paper Offices, Social Services, Churches and Universities, and factories and Industries, Jails, Street Gangs, etc. Chicago is very different from a small town in the plains area. If we look at it from this point of view then when it comes to any situation, say crime, one city is more inclined then another, more handicapped to stop it then another, more attractive and vulnerable to crime then another. This can be because the city has more resources to exploit, such as a big city, or it can be because the city has more enemies, such as a city in a war zone, or because the city has more ability to come together and solve their problems, such as a small quiet country town.
Criminals take advantage of a city or town's vulnerabilities or handicaps, just as people take advantage of handicapped individuals. For that community or city to survive it has to take better inventory of self and others and come up with a compensating plan. It has to figure out how to survive. If it does it will be a superior town or neighborhood, if not it will continue to be exploited. It can be a time of growth or a time of staggering crime that most are unaware of. Crime takes advantage of a community or city that does not communicate with itself to figure out how to proceed. A counselor, to be effective, has to learn their city to help their clients deal with real life situations. That is not easy as Counselors have to be non judgmental and separate their private lives from their clients to be neutral and not controlled by clients or the agencies they have to deal with. Some of those agencies try to control everyone through the government inadvertently giving criminals the advantage. Too complex, I'll try and show you.
|Posted on March 26, 2013 at 10:35 PM||comments (66)|
Schools go through about a ten year cycle. They are governed by government mandates and limits that slows down change and traditions that were built into the system to prevent the public from changing them. Mental Health agencies have similar inflexible rules from government regulations and directors are inflexible to change. Also they both are out of touch with neighborhoods as they do not mingle with them. They have to be professional and so they can not let down their hair and interact with their students and clients.
But the public, the neighborhoods and their problems change. New people move in, economic depressions happen changing their focus, people move out, the educational level and aspirations change as the population changes. But Schools and Mental Health agencies are trapped in their buildings and do not see what is going on. So the students and clients become discontent with the teachers and counselors. Students disobey and clients go elsewhere.
Teachers are not quite sure what to teach and counselors are not quite sure what to confront clients on. Teacher begin to over discipline and counselors lack insights. Teachers and counselors become increasingly handicapped, they are blind to the real world. The criminal elements in the neighborhoods are unseen and able to operate without interference. And teachers and counselors do not know how to help their students and clients avoid the dangers.
|Posted on March 20, 2013 at 10:40 PM||comments (100)|
As I said before, I had three jobs, one as a family counselor with an old well established agency, the second working with sex offenders, and the third with Native Americans. I was not prepared by college for the deep and width of the problems I found in poor neighborhoods, and families that for generations have had too much drama or drugs and alcohol. Domestic Violence and neglect was wide spread. But worst of all is the predators that prey on these neighborhoods. Crime and drug dealers who recruit the kids to do their dirty work or live with single moms and beat them. Also confused and overwhelmed state workers and social workers making decisions on their lives without knowing them as people but only as statistics could result in undue hardships. Most of all I did not realize for a while that often crooked people who want to prey on poor neighborhoods will get these state jobs to cover up their intents and use people and then turn around and blame them. I will try and explain it a bit more on subsequent posts the things that handicap the poor neighborhoods.
|Posted on February 28, 2013 at 11:15 PM||comments (423)|
You learn many useful things when you are handicapped that is of value through life. You learn to keep going when you feel uncomfortable. You learn to respect others, even if they criticize you, because you realize they are handicapped in their attitudes. You learn to appreciate little things, and to enjoy the roses. You notice more patterns then a lot of people do, you have to, and it helps you understand a lot of things. You are less bored because observation is a never ending game, and alone you have a lot to think about. You become a specialist, an expert at things others may over look. And you tend to stay out of a lot of trouble that others would drag you into but don't because you are not 'normal,' 'cool,' or you are too hard to figured out. It also gives you a basis to judge others on, how well they understand you. So you begin to pick better, more sensitive, and wiser friends. And you can pass your wisdom on to your children.
|Posted on February 19, 2013 at 11:15 PM||comments (55)|
About the time you begin to feel comfortable with Child Protective Services (CPS), you are doing everything they want you to, they have promised to return your children in a timely manner, or you think they have, you get a new worker and its back to step one. They may not even like you, and threaten to never return your children. Did I mention you should hire a really good lawyer if you can afford it? There are always bumps in the road and lawyers familiar with the agency can help you live through them. There is no easy way around it, it is emotionally exhausting. It is truly a handicapping situation. You will get first hand experience what it is like to be handicapped, and in the worse way. You live each day as if it is the first day of the horror story, and no end in view. It can feel like a kidnapping with no ransom or changing ransoms. How do you live through hell? One day at a time. Hour by hour entertaining yourself and controlling yourself, learning new things. Keep a journal, talk to your children in the journal. Someday they will be old enough to wonder what happened, why you abandoned them. They can read your journal and begin to understand. It will be healing down the road. It will also help you organize your thoughts and feelings and taking part in the reality of the future. I have never lost my children but I have lived through it with many many people. It can be a time of growth, a growth your children will need when they do return. You are handicapped and so are your children, and you will want to share the experiences with them so they can heal. When we re-experience things in safety the brain heals by letting go of the pain.
|Posted on February 8, 2013 at 1:50 PM||comments (33)|
What should we do when we are handicapped? We need to rethink everything. Our usual thoughts are the average thoughts that people think, how they see the world. But we see, feel, think, and do things a bit differently. To see the difference between us and others can give us some extra advantages, more insights, and more insights can give us more alternative actions and reactions. If we all realize we are handicapped when we do not know the politics of any situations then we begin to look deeper, feel more empathy, think it through more, and act more functionally.
So if Child Protective Services (CPS) has taken your children on suspicion of abuse you want to let the workers know you are not a threat to them so they do not build a huge case against you. Remember your children, the sooner you get them home the better for them, if you a capable parent. Remember your children are going into depression and are in a very strange world. You want to be able to have as much contact as possible, so don't burn your bridges by arguing to the worker. They have to justify their jobs so they will only counter your arguments.
You have got to have empathy or you come across as unempethetic and unfit to parent. Yes, it seems unfair that you have to nurture the very people that have plagued your life. But they hold the keys to getting your children back. Not only do you have to nurture them you need to understand and nurture the whole department. If you see how they are trapped by politics you can better help them be at ease and in turn they will cooperate and help you.
The main politics is this. If they return your children and you further hurt or even kill them the headlines in the news will shake up the nation. Not only will you be the bad guy so will they. You are both under the microscope. Now, if they harm your children by putting them through tough times, well, that can be covered up and denied and even blamed on you. So if you were in their shoes what would do, remember if you take someone's children you really have no idea what really happened and are you going to trust these strangers who have been accursed of child abuse?
Once you realize the whole world is handicapped, that no one knows it all, that everyone is in blind situations, that all situations are partly blind, deaf, unfeeling, confusing, and in motion anyway, then you realize we are all on a Merry Go Round that can be dangerous if not respected it is easier to settle down into a state of watchfulness.
|Posted on February 8, 2013 at 1:35 PM||comments (64)|
When a Child Protective Service (CPS) worker takes your child because of suspected abuse the last thing you want to do is get defensive and offensive. Stop and look at the workers perspective. It is hard to even think about doing but it is very vital. Put yourself in their shoes, you go to someone's home to take their children. That is very unnatural, you will feel defensive as you know the parents will be. Both of you will be at a heightened emotional state and very defensive.
As a worker you will have to justify your every move. You will be looking for every little discrepancy or excuse to back you up. You want to back out but you could loose your job and be on the blacklist for any similar job. You will note any bad behaviors on the part of the parents and your first impressions will stick like glue.
The only area of safety is the job itself, your colleagues will back you up, if you give them evidence. Even if you are doing the wrong thing by removing the child or children they will back you up. If you back out and the child is hurt or killed you can not live with yourself. You will go full steam ahead and take note of anything negative otherwise you are trapped between the parents and fellow workers.
Remember, CPS workers are not counselors, they are not on your side, their job is not to help and understand you. You have to gently help them understand that you are a good guy after all. Do everything you can to comfort your children, make it easy on them. Do everything you can to comfort the people who have your children. The politics have just begun.
|Posted on January 31, 2013 at 3:35 AM||comments (1189)|
There is nothing so heart wrenching then to be caught up in the politics of Child Protective Services (CPS), when child abuse is suspected they may take someone's children and place them in a foster home. If they feel they have proven abuse they may keep your children for two years or never return them. If the children are tiny the chances go up that they will keep them and adopt them out. Our children do not belong to us but first to the state, unless we treat our children with their legal rights the state can take them, with the blessing of the federal government. Sounds good, we should not abuse, but between the CPS worker taking the child and returning them is a lot of time full of wild emotions and politics. People are blind to why it takes so long and turns out so poorly for everyone, workers, parents, and children. If you do not know what and why of whats happening then you are handicapped, you may do what you feel is right and responsible, but it may only make things much worse.
Usually, the very first thing people do when their children are taken is to get scared and anxious. This can make them defensive, so they get angry and tell off the workers. This only convinces the worker that you are indeed an abusive parent because you have just abused the worker. You may feel you have a right, after all you are their parent. But remember the children belong to the state. We have to be very polite, shook up is ok, its normal, but do not yell or criticize the person who, so to speak, has a gun to your head. This is only the beginning. I will talk next time about why the worker is so aggressive.
|Posted on January 22, 2013 at 11:25 PM||comments (60)|
But, again, the politics can be even worse as I found out later, at the third job. We are not taught in college about the specifics of politics. But like all human behaviors they have to be analyzed, categorized, and understood to avoid being controlled by them, especially when it can hurt your client. Clients are unaware of counseling politics or find it hard to see them clearly, so we have to protect them from it. To do that we need to know how it affects us and our out look on society because we will pass on our burden to clients.
An example is funding sources, they add their politics to the arena. When people want other sources to pay for their counseling, lets say state medical coupons because one is on the State Welfare roles. If you are clearly a victim of a crime the politics are minimal, but if they think you are a perpetrator of a crime, lets say they suspect you have committed domestic violence, the politics can be fierce. Counseling can be scary for the client as they think you are tied into the state when they were court ordered to do the counseling. They fear you will report them if they are honest. And, yes, we have to report any real and legal abuse.
What clients often do not understand is that we counselors see the world very differently from the law. The law is handicapped by stiff rules and regs and definitions, we are not. Counselors can be much more flexible and realistic about what has happened. The law must look at only the suspect, we can look at the situation from the angle of everyone involved, if we know about them, and the source of actions such as perceptions, emotions, thoughts and assumptions, and from what really happened. So, yes, a husband hit his wife, but she hit him first, but she was defending herself, and he was drunk, and she was drunker, and both were on medication that when mixed with alcohol make you crazy…… etc.
We can help untangle the mess and see if the sources of the problem were circumstantial, personality disorders, or one time bombs of anxiety that most likely will not be repeated, especially if causes can be eliminated or modified. In other words, we are more sympathetic to the realities. We must convey this to the client or they will not be honest with us. That is no easy task. If they are honest we can help them, if they are not they have wasted their money and we have let them, and that is not ethical. So we must try and convince them and often that means we must help them understand the politics that affect them and us. We must be honest and expand their world as best we can. We teach them the method of inquiry so they can do it on their own.
I was handicapped, others would treat me badly at times thinking I was lazy rather then unable to do certain things. So we are all handicapped with the law just as our clients are, just as the law enforcers are, once we understand each others handicaps we can better see the dynamics and make better choices that will give us a better chance of solving our problems to the betterment of self and others, including the law. These types of situations are the rule rather then the exception.
We all become handicapped with ignorance. The unseen can be confusing and I was use to that. Our client are a temporary extension of us, and we have to figure out what is happening with and to them, whether they are caught up in the legal system or their own family or job systems. As a counselor we are learning as much as our clients, we learn with them and add our past lessons to the pot, the pot of understanding and dignity to all, or it becomes quickly a pot of something else.
|Posted on January 16, 2013 at 11:10 AM||comments (88)|
I knew I could not compete for a supervisory position because of the extra paperwork. But I loved hands on counseling. I could of became a licensed psychologist and gotten much more money but again, it would of been a lot of report writing and for the courts. And I could not have been honest, as to be competitive required loyalty more to a group of people making political decision then to be loyal to the purity of the profession, of helping people better their lives.
One thing I have learned in the field of counseling, there is no big money in honesty, ethicalness, and equality to all. I was a Sex Offender Treatment Provider for thirteen years, and soon learned that where ever there is money in counseling, there is corruption. Why there is money in treating felons with court cases is your client is trapped, he/she has to come and he/she has to pay. And if someone makes a deal, illegal, with a prosecutor or government agency to write reports that can win in court, the counselor has a steady and growing income. And with the political backing they can start certifications that require others to take their classes, and even say that if others take their classes they need little education, that they can do the counseling with out the time and energy required for degrees. Again, Golden Boys and Girls appear and the standards are lowered.
Having struggled so hard to get where I was I could not be unethical. I could not put another person at a disadvantage. I could not join the growing circle of people in the money that to me was selling clients down the road. I am not saying I thought sex offenders should get off easy, I am saying that in the name of politics they were not getting the highest standards in help. When a counselor can make money without high standards the standards begin to drop. That is the way of all human endeavors, give the kids cookies whether they do the chores or not, they soon do not. Then they hoard them from the other kids, they are spoilt. The problem with some of the regulatory agencies is they do not know what the standards are, they are not counselors, and they can follow the wrong groups, especially early in the game before educated people can challenge the politics. It is human weakness.
|Posted on January 9, 2013 at 5:10 PM||comments (92)|
When I graduated, I took on three part time jobs, one full time, the other two ten to twenty hours a week. I was a new counselor and very idealistic, I wanted to keep up high standards. What a shock I was in for.
On one job they did mostly family counseling. Yes, I needed some additional theory beyond what I had received. That would of been wonderful, interesting, and productive. But to teach me they had me sit in with a master level counselor, which in itself would of been ok, but he was not well trained and eventually gave up the profession. I learned what he had to give and analyzed the dynamics of some of the males wanting and having a 'Golden Boy,' and he was not their only one. The theory of these men was that males have more dynamics then women, that only a man can teach it to boys, and only men can really understand it. The golden boy displays this talent without training or experience. Their golden boy eventually couldn't fight his way out of a wet paper bag. But the next golden boy they had only had a bachelors, the 'natural counselor,' they called him, 'wonder boy.' He too gave up the profession, I think because he, like the other, could not meet their unrealistic expectations.
This may make you very skeptical that I would be saying such bold things and was so new at the business. At the time I was in the dark, but with more and more time and work behind me it became more clear. Some people need saviors, someone that can justify their doubts about themselves or their craft and prove that the miraculous can happen. I think it happens mostly with people that are not well enough educated to figure out what they are doing, we never really can, but they are even more in the dark. They are competitive but unable to compete because of education and experience, but if they possess a miracle, a natural talent, they can compete without the sweat of time and education. But they can not last if they are truly not golden. I have yet to see anyone golden.
I would always be suspect to these men because I was female and had more education. They wanted to justify paying me less and not allowing me to advance. They had a psychiatrist challenge me in one of the meetings, but when he confronted me about being emotionless, a myth the guys had spread, and tears came to my eyes and I answered him the best I could the political games ended. I was then on the accepted list as a good therapist and the golden boy age, of a couple of years, went away.
I had told a young man at one of my other jobs, a job ran by a woman, that his ambitions and male structuring and stances were not working because it was not a male system. I told him about the other job and said he should apply there. Not only did he join us in the other job he went up the ladder quickly to clinical director and from then on I was protected from anymore politics. He knew I was his equal and at times more.
This job, of the three jobs, was the healthiest and most stable. But all organizations go through cycles of start, success, and demise. Demise would come, but not yet. When it did it was a real eye opener, unexpected. Next I will tell you how the egos of ambitious men can destroy even the best of agencies.
|Posted on January 3, 2013 at 10:25 AM||comments (36)|
I did not know what to expect on the final step, a meeting with faculty that determines if you get the degree you spent years to prepare and complete. Like the prelims, four days of testing, I did not know what to expect. What could go wrong? It would last about two to four hours. I was petrified. I never heard of not passing and being able to try again. It might be possible, I did not know. I was at the mercy of others whims, not a good feeling when you fail at common easy tasks, like remembering someone's name, or the grocery list.
The day came, they were all in a room. I was brought in. How intimidating. a bunch of men, some I did not know. I soon found out they were from the Child Clinical part of the Clinical Psych department. They were there to defend or challenge me.
To be honest, I can not really remember much. They fired a bunch of questions at me, I answered but can not say what. I think I was numb. Years of preparation, set backs galore, tons of time and money all balancing on the whims of a group of men.
In a fog I remember them saying my degree was awarded or granted or something. I knew I had made it. I was breathless. I couldn't breath. I was so glad when they all left and i stood in the hall alone, a new Ph.D. The first thought that came to my mind as tears came to my eyes was I knew I did not have to do Kindergarden all over again, nor first grade when I got sick and returned to discover I did not know what my box of words were, that I had forgotten what I had learned, when I could not even find the bathroom, or lunch room, when everything became strange and unknown and very very difficult. That would never go away, but I did not have to start over from the beginning anymore. I could now compete at an equal level with others. I had three jobs already, but I had not been validated by a school like this final validation. The nightmare was over and the dawn had begun.
Now the jobs had become my next challenge. I never realized how hard it would be to insist on high standards and quality that I had gotten at the Ph.D level. Politics can be devastating, much worse then getting a Ph.D.
|Posted on December 25, 2012 at 10:05 PM||comments (32)|
My advisor would send back my disertation with corrections. I would make them and send it back. It always came back with more. I started to notice that a lot of them were the same corrections, he would say to spell it this way, then that way, then the way it was spelled the first time. It was an enless game of ping pong, only the ball was grammar and spelling, or the where comas go.
I knew that I had to figure out why the game playing. My first move was to go the Ethnographer and ask why. He was triely one of my unsung heros. He had the gift, talent, or skill of observation of the dynamics of the university. He said it was because my research had gone beyond my advisors expertise. He was responsible to judge me but he did not know hwo. So he was stalling. He said I needed to go to the Clinical Psychology department and have them look at it and approve it if it was ok and then have them let him know. I promptly did that and they said it was good and let him know. At last the game came to an end.
We have to build our future, but we have to know what is happening now if we are going to change things. It never hurts to ask questions and patiently. Once we understand we know what to do, until that time we are all handicapped. If we know what works it is only a matter of follow through. Ignorance is our ONLY handicap, if we know how to get what we need it is only a matter of follow though.
The next hurrtle would be the meeting of the department, a two or three hour interview in which I have to justify my research, if I pass the degree is awarded. I was waiting for the usual set back.