1 answer

Do psychologist ever feel that their job is to much to handle/ too overwhelming?


I ask because I've heard the job can be emotionally draining and I can be a sensitive/emotional person. #counseling-psychology #therapy #psychology #psychologist #stress

1 answer

Daniela’s Answer

Updated State of Goiás, State of Goiás, Brazil

Hi Zalyia,

According to Tyger Latham, a licensed clinical psychologist, practicing in Washington, DC:

"Therapists can benefit from being in therapy as much as their patients".

Therapy can be an important component of our professional as we learn from our own therapists. In doing so, we are forced to look at our own base instincts and empathize with our clients all too human wishes and impulses. 

The therapist who is able to identify and work through these personal conflicts is far less likely to "act out" with their clients in ways that can potentially be destructive. In fact, some have argued that therapy should be a requirement for anyone entering the profession. Indeed, this was what Sigmund  had intended when he wrote (Freud, 1912):

"Anyone who wishes to practice analysis should first submit to be analyzed himself by a competent person. Not only is the purpose of learning to know what is hidden in one's own mind far more quickly obtained and with less expense of affect, but impressions and convictions are received in one's own person which may be sought in vain by studying books and attending lectures... That analyst, however, who has despised the provision of analysis for himself will be penalized, not merely by an incapacity to learn more than a certain amount from his patient, but by risking a more serious danger for others".

While I concur with Freud that being in one's own therapy can be personally enlightening and informative, I do not believe it can or should be mandated of all therapists. With that said, I would hope that anyone called to this profession would understand the maxim that in order to help others you must first help yourself.