So yeah, I know I said I’d post about events that brought me up to being in the mental health field but meh, I’ll do it if anyone becomes interested or even starts to read this.
So anyways…Texas state mental health…yeah, it’s frustrating. Don’t get me wrong, I love my job! The most likely reason it irritates me so much is this field, you only really enter it if you are passionate about the field. In this case, the passion lines up with helping people and hoping to make a difference. Cliche, no? But it’s the truth, this field you work directly, no screens or other barriers, with a person. I aim to provide the best skills training, rehab, community linking, etc services to my clients as humanly possible. I’m kinda like a glorified, mental health focused, life coach. The goal is for clients to become independent members of the community who can manage their mental illness by themselves.
But I digress, frustration is a major part of my life even if i wish it wasn’t. While my coworkers and I place high importance on out jobs, who doesn’t know a days, the state hasn’t seemed to prioritized it yet. Last I heard, Texas was 50th of all the states in the mental health field. Makes ya feel great right? Translate that to funding and, well you get the point, we’re the low man on the totem pole of funds it seems. Therefore the caseworkers that are hired, we have to work our butts off to meet with all our clients enough each month to provide sufficient care. FYI that’s a good amount of people! Again, don’t get me wrong, I didn’t expect entering this field to have a cake walk but the demands placed upon us are pretty high for the area I serve. Flip side, I feel ecstatic that our boss trusts us and believes that we can pull off some crazy numbers! But understand, each day isn’t solely about providing services to clients. Oh no ahaha. In that same time span, we need to travel to meet the client’s in the community (I have an office but rarely use it), update paperwork for all our clients, enter progress notes about each meeting/session, and just the meetings themselves. All this detracts me from the time I WANT to meet my clients! Heck each day, I catch myself thinking about some of my clients, wondering how he/she is doing, did he/she try my suggested skills, were there any arguments at home, or heck did he/she stay out of jail…
In the end of the day, I go home and just…hope. It’s almost a constant weight on my shoulders, am I making a difference? Is what I’m saying getting through? Am I saying it in the right way or am I the right person to be his/her case worker? The list goes on and on but you get the point. And after just writing this out, I think I see my biggest problem and best asset that helps be do my job, I care.
Psh, I think this is enough doom and gloom for today. Besides, “If you don’t become an actor, you’ll never be a factor” – Lupe Fiasco “Words I Never Said” Great words to live by and chant to myself each day.
Also, here’s a couple sites that I thought were interesting on the topic of stress management in mental health professionals:
–Que sera, sera moi komrades