• Quote of the Day
    "There is nothing like returning to a place that remains unchanged to find the ways in which you yourself have altered."
    Nelson Mandela, posted by Daniel

xnurse

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Hello everyone,
I have have been reading the newsletter for a few months.I am a nonworking RN (27:dimples:+ yrs) it has always been my dream to get a MS in Counseling or MFT.I am almost the big 50!! I keep telling myself it is too late I will be too old ( in class with 20 somethings).My hubby says do it!!! I do not need to work for $$$.I just feel I could help people. My brother suffers from schizophrenia so I have been inhaling books about his illness. I am thinking of Capella online(it is CACREP accredited) you have 2 residency sessions,and you do your supervised clinical hours and internships in your area. It is expensive but it is a dream I have had for a while.I can not go the traditional sit in a class all day route.I did my BS in Human Developement (online 2002) so I am familiar with online learning. Our Graduating MS Class had a lady who was 83 getting her MFT degree!!! What do you think? Is it worth all the hours of supervised clinicals? I love learning. What inspired you to become a Therapist? I love this forum.
 

Daniel

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I would think twice about Capella. Over the years, I've seen quite a number of both positive and negative comments about that university at the online degree forum:

http://forums.degreeinfo.com/

For a positive perspective:

http://minnesota.publicradio.org/di...ing__and_profitable__star_in_online_learning/

For a negative perspective:

I intentionally slacked off on a major project and didn’t fulfill most of the requirements. I was shocked and couldn’t believe my eyes when I received 100% for something I know I should have failed. At this point I’m certain that our professor doesn’t even read our papers and frankly it’s discouraging. Basically this is a self-taught program and you pay to pass.

http://www.capella-sucks.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=202\

I was in the psychology program and did complain to my state representative with limited results. I then contacted the State office of Higher Ed and they did nothing so I contacted the director with no reply as of yet. I am now onto the Govenor and Senator's office and the House of Representatives as well as their accrediting body.

http://www.capella-sucks.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=61
 

HA

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:welcome: to psychlinks, exnurse!

Of course it is not too late for you to become a therapist:! To think otherwise would be considered [GOOGLE]ageism[/GOOGLE]. The only time you are "too old" for anything is if you are operating machinery or your reaction time is too slow and would interfer with your personal or other persons well being somehow.

There is also a place called [GOOGLE]The Fielding Institute [/GOOGLE]which I know some people who are working have used. It is important to find a graduate program that is accredited by the psychological or counselling governing bodies.

I will add another link later to a Canadian university program that's online.

Cheers
 

Daniel

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Yeah, age isn't the issue. Also, I would assume that many patients would be more comfortable with a 50-something therapist than a 20-something therapist. Of course, any job can be stressful and being a therapist can take up a lot of emotional energy (including compassion fatigue):

Counselors must possess high physical and emotional energy to handle the array of problems that they address. Dealing daily with these problems can cause stress. Although the risk of litigation is relatively low, it is still prudent for counselors in all fields to hold some form of personal liability insurance. Because privacy is essential for confidential and frank discussions with clients, counselors usually have private offices.

http://www.bls.gov/oco/ocos067.htm

For at least some people, an obvious stressor would be dealing with severely depressed patients who have an inherent suicide risk.

Another issue, more so in private practice, is being on call and not being able to go on leave for months at a time:

Mental-health professionals, including psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers and nurse practitioners, may approach vacations differently, depending on their training, experience and personal preference. Typically, they will have a colleague cover for them while they're gone if patients need ongoing care or in case emergencies arise.

Robinowitz says she and other therapists who have a medical background are used to being on call for their patients.

"We believe illness and care exist 24/7. You may hear something different from people who come from other disciplines," she says. "We see people on the weekends if need be. We talk to them at night."

How to Cope When Your Therapist Goes on Vacation
 
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Daniel

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Some possible advantages & disadvantages of being a therapist:

Some Potential Attractions of Careers in Clinical and Counseling Psychology:


- Personal Fulfillment: Working with and helping clients can bring a great deal of personal satisfaction.

- Making a Difference: Unique feelings come when you see a client make changes in their lives because you have helped them.

- Being Your Own Boss: In private practice, clinical and counseling psychologists are often their own bosses and set their own hours.

- Changing Environment: Each client provides different and interesting information about themselves; therefore, the psychologist is rarely bored from doing routine work.

- Learning Experience: Clients' diagnoses and therapeutic plans tend to be at least somewhat unique, providing ongoing learning opportunities.

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Some Potential Drawbacks of Careers in Clinical and Counseling Psychology:

- Long Hours: Clinical and counseling psychologists often put in up to 12 hours a day between working with clients and the accompanying paperwork.

- High Risk of Burnout: Therapy can be very intense and emotionally exhausting, especially if clients do not respond to treatment or who threaten to commit suicide.

- Paperwork: There is an enormous amount of paperwork associated with each client. Health insurance companies alone require a lot of paperwork about clients.

- Unchanging Clients: Some disorders are easier to treat than others. It can become very aggravating and frustrating to continuously work with a client who do not make life changes.

- Intensive: Therapy is very draining because a therapist's full attention must be given to each client. There is little room for daydreaming or allowing your thoughts to wander.

http://www.wcupa.edu/_academics/sch_cas.psy/Career_Paths/Clinical/Career03.htm

Regarding the disadvantage of working long hours, there are some therapists/counselors that work part-time, especially in acute care:

http://www.indeed.com/jobs?q=part+time+mental+counselor
 

ThatLady

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It's never too late to do anything you really want to do. I've started taking classes again. I'm 46. I've already got a masters in nursing and a lot of other courses that assist me in the work I do. However, I've got a bug in my bonnet about being a Nurse Practitioner. Sooo...I'm off again. I think I may be a professional student! :D
 

braveheart

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I have done some integrative psychotherapy training. I had to leave though part way into the MA because I was in too much of a vulnerable place emotionally at the time, and the experiential groups were triggering and re-traumatising for me.
I was 35 when I left. I am 37 now. When I left, at my 'leaving session' with one of the Heads of Training, she told me that there is no reason why I can't train again in 10 years time. [now 8 years!!!] And that is my plan. Probably though in attachment based psychotherapy. There is a great course I have my eye on... anyway..
The minimum age for training in most UK psychotherapy trainings at least, is 25. So you're definitely not too late. :)
 

HA

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ThatLady, good for you! I'm so proud of you for continuing your education if that is what makes you happy. I wish you all the best with your future goals.

I think I will always being taking a course about something so will be one of those lifetime students too. It's so much fun...then again when I get overwhelmed with study and work....I wonder why I torture myself so. I never get overwhelmed with the art courses though.

Good luck with your future plans, Braveheart! When we travel down a certain path we may not always end up where we first anticipated we would be but we always end up where we are meant to be at this time along our journey.
 

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