Are Mental Health Practitioners Allowed To Be Vulnerable? A Talk At Bath University
What a lovely lot on the Bath DClinPsy course. The first of autumn talks to bash the stigma of having lived experience of distress as a mental health professional ... ie being human and not 'othering' vulnerability.
We may any one of us experience mental ill health. Personal experience has been shown to be helpful for compassionate engagement in this work. Anyone feeling vulnerable must be met with compassion.
These trainees are about to go out into the world and I hope they can feel allowed, as helpers, to be vulnerable if they feel so, to understand experiences of their own distress as a gift to help learn more about themselves and helping others.
Here's to post traumatic growth and serious resilience for those who have gone through difficulty and come out the other side... and many of those are rightly in our helping professions now helping others.
Can the organisations and professions within the mental health scene meet practitioner humanity with anything other than a 'risk monitoring' mirror to their experiences of distress? Can we take this further to understand the growth from adversity and also the inherent humanity of our workforce? Can in2gr8mentalhealth, that holds this platform of solidarity for those practitioners with lived experience, ever cease to exist because actually the mental health scene has been able to open enough to integrate this within where it belongs?
This isn't anything to do with a staff wellbeing policy (too often asking individuals to soothe away the ills of toxic services), this is engaging with the reality of who we are. It's much much bigger.
We are on shifting sands since this began and conversations and research are growing.
Keep going! From feedback I get, people are beginning to really listen.