If you are a care-giver, therapist, health professional or you work in an environment where there are a lot of negative emotions, you might not be surprised to learn that you could be suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) or to put it another way Compassion Fatigue.
According to Susanne Babbel, Ph.D., MFT, “the helpers symptoms, frequently unnoticed, may range from psychological issues such as dissociation, anger, anxiety, sleep disturbances, nightmares, to feeling powerless. However, professionals may also experience physical symptoms such as nausea, headaches, general constriction, bodily temperature changes, dizziness, fainting spells, and impaired hearing. All important warning signals for the caregiver that need to be addressed or otherwise might lead to health issues or burnout.” Highlitghting that you do not need to be a soldier to suffer from (PTSD).
Authors and researchers Babette Rothschild hypothesizes that it is the unconscious empathy, the empathy outside awareness and control that might interfere with the well being of the caregiver. Maybe this can give us further insight into (PTSD). When they read the client examples put forward in The Saboteur Within, they will find even more evidence to support their claims.
The great Russian psychologist Lev Vygotsky, believed that thought and talk, although they have different roots, they converge when we are children and every aspect of our cultural development appears twice, first on a social level, between people (interpsychological), and then inside ones self (intrapsychological). In a nutshell what he means is, all the higher psychological functions originate as actual relations between human individuals. If Vygotsky is right, then is it any wonder that Compassion Fatigue happens outside of our conscious awareness?
The key to overcoming (PTSD) , therefore, would appear for you to transform the meaning of what you are doing on a day to day basis and remembering who you are at an identity level. It may sound simple but all to often when the unconscious mind gets involved with new learnings, it can become automated, so we would seek to re-engage you to you, yourself, your mind, body and spirit.
Are you a Carer or Health Facilitator? Here is the link to Psychology Today