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Can I become a counselor?

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  • Can I become a counselor?

    Of course I'd have to go back to school and get a master's degree in Counseling or something, but I do want to help children overcome traumatic situations. Though, how do I know if I would be capable of handling that or not? Maybe I shouldn't have listened to the people who discouraged me from going into social work for thinking I would not handle it.
    If it weren't for the Resurrection of Jesus, we'd all be in DEEP TROUBLE!

  • #2
    It would never hurt to learn some psychology. I have a book by frankl i want to read. Maybe you would enjoy and learn from it.
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    • #3
      You can do it. I know it's a bit cliche', but.... just remember - they don't care what you know til they know that you care.
      "Neighbor, how long has it been since you’ve had a big, thick, steaming bowl of Wolf Brand Chili?”

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      • #4
        I suggest getting your feet wet to find out. Pursue an internship or part time work with an organization that helps children in traumatic situations. Hopefully you'll have a chance to work directly with the children some, but even if you don't you're likely to gain a sense of what the organization deals with. When you start to hear the stories of the children involved and see how they cope, you'll be about as close as you can to actually doing the therapy/counselling work yourself. Additionally, you'll be gaining valuable work experience that'll help in a job application should you decide to work full time in the field.

        If you live in the US, I'd suggest finding your nearest Children's Advocacy Center. I work closely with a local branch of this organization, and they really do a LOT to help kids who are victims of physical and sexual abuse. There are also all kinds of other organizations that work with children, so do some research and find out what's near you.

        You also don't have to actually be a counselor to help children in traumatic situations. There are niche jobs like Multi-Disciplinary Team Coordinators, full-time Forensic Interviewers, Child and Family Advocates, and more. Feel free to PM me if you have more questions.
        "If you believe, take the first step, it leads to Jesus Christ. If you don't believe, take the first step all the same, for you are bidden to take it. No one wants to know about your faith or unbelief, your orders are to perform the act of obedience on the spot. Then you will find yourself in the situation where faith becomes possible and where faith exists in the true sense of the word." - Dietrich Bonhoeffer, The Cost of Discipleship

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        • #5
          I have a B.S. in Psychology already.
          If it weren't for the Resurrection of Jesus, we'd all be in DEEP TROUBLE!

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          • #6
            You might consider starting by volunteering for Make a Wish - you won't immediately work with the kids but will probably work with the families - if you can handle getting your toes wet that way, then you can find something more direct.

            I've dealt mostly with teens and adults but I'm wired differently than you. You have qualities (just from here on Tweb) that will either make you great or will kill you - it's okay to try and I wish you all the best. But if you get to where you can honestly say 'not cut out for this' that's okay, too. Don't go for it just because others say you can't; don't stick with it just to prove them wrong. Don't give up because it's tough; don't keep bailing when the boat is underwater.

            I'm going to stop rambling uselessly now. Love ya!

            "He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose." - Jim Elliot


            "Forgiveness is the way of love." Gary Chapman

            My Personal Blog

            My Novella blog (Current Novella Begins on 7/25/14)

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            • #7
              I'm only upset to not be able to do anything against the injustices of the world. And pretty sure therapists are supposed to go to therapist support groups or something.
              If it weren't for the Resurrection of Jesus, we'd all be in DEEP TROUBLE!

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Christianbookworm View Post
                I'm only upset to not be able to do anything against the injustices of the world. And pretty sure therapists are supposed to go to therapist support groups or something.
                I was an 'advocate' in my thread where I helped Jim get a driver's license, ss card and birth certificate. When he started having severe anxiety and paranoia, I knew I was not qualified to help him - I have some certifications in counseling and mental health, but those are not my strong points. I helped guide him through the system to get the help that he needs, even advancing from 'advocate' to 'affiant' in a warrant to get him into HMHR treatment.

                You have, apparently, more formal education in this area than I do.... If you haven't already done so, I'd encourage you to take Myth up on his offer. I'll be glad to help, too, but it sounds like Myth has this together.

                (What I'm saying is, if a guy like me can make a difference, I have no doubt you can! )
                "Neighbor, how long has it been since you’ve had a big, thick, steaming bowl of Wolf Brand Chili?”

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Christianbookworm View Post
                  I'm only upset to not be able to do anything against the injustices of the world. And pretty sure therapists are supposed to go to therapist support groups or something.
                  Sit down and write up a list of what you think a counselor can do to help then write up a list of what they can't do. Wait a week and write up a list of your own skills, talents, characteristics - both good and bad - anything that would possibly affect your ability as a counselor. Wait another week and compare the lists - does what you have to offer mesh with what you expect to be able to do? Are your expectations for counselling realistic? Are your expectations for yourself realistic?

                  In the mean time, Myth is right - get the toes wet. Real world isn't like classroom -and using that classroom to good advantage isn't always easy.

                  Remember, you may not be able to help the whole beach - but it may just be your job to help a starfish or two.

                  "He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose." - Jim Elliot


                  "Forgiveness is the way of love." Gary Chapman

                  My Personal Blog

                  My Novella blog (Current Novella Begins on 7/25/14)

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Christianbookworm View Post
                    I'm only upset to not be able to do anything against the injustices of the world. And pretty sure therapists are supposed to go to therapist support groups or something.
                    Actually, any counseling profession, within the behavioral health field, recommends therapists to attend their own therapy sessions. Mainly, there is a lot of toxicity you are having individuals dump on you.

                    It is great working with kids and there are a lot of children from homes where substance use disorder is very prevalent. My recommendation is to find out what your state license requirements are. Here in Washington state, you are required to have a master's degree and then work within an agency for practicum (sometimes it is up to six months of unpaid internship). You also have to do certain amount of hours to go from a Licensed Mental Health Counselor associate to a Licensed Mental Health Counselor.

                    Also, you may want to consider the fact that most counselors are to understand diversity cultures in that you will be required to work with people who live a lifestyle that may be disagreable with you. However, there are some Christian Counseling associations one is able to align with and work through various ministries and churches.

                    It really depends on what you do and what type of population you are wanting to serve. I work as a counselor in a Medical Clinic that provides Counseling and Medically Assisted treatment with Suboxone and Methadone. Been in the field for over six years now.

                    Also, be ready to take ongoing continuing education classes and workships as there maybe requirements to take certain classes. For me, I have to have at least 40 CEU's every two years, one of them being in Law and Ethics.
                    For a Christ-Centric Recovery and Mindful Christian Living - Damascus Way Recovery

                    For Latter-day Saint Christian, Political, and Social Commentary and Apologetics - Mormon Apologia

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