chapter  3
17 Pages

Traumatically Overwhelming Professional Settings

I remember some of my ‰rst professional settings in snapshots. While still in graduate school, I worked at two Veterans hospitals and one New York State hospital. What is the personal and professional legacy of these early career experiences? Did they prepare me to bear the incessant losses that are inherent in a clinical career? On the whole, did this powerful introduction to professional life inoculate me, strengthening my ability to witness suffering? Or did it somehow weaken my capacity to withstand the “ ordinary” losses and the other stresses of a life doing clinical work?