Originally Posted by Berties_Horse
Is there a thin line in your experience between objectivity and empathy?
I don't think I understand your question. Could you elaborate on what you mean and I'll do my best to answer?
Originally Posted by wexie
Presumably from the OP you've worked or at least been involved with in the prison system.
Has this been from an assessment or treatment angle?
Is there (in your opinion) much of an effort being made in the Irish prison system with regards rehabilitation? Would it be useful?
I haven't worked within the Irish prison system, I must confess. But in the forensic system I did work in (it was a secure hospital, not a prison, just to be clear), I have worked in both assessment and treatment. Emphasis was most definitely on treatment and rehabilitation, and the ultimate goal, where possible, was always to try
and get someone back into the community.
Aiming for rehabilitation is always the best approach, in my view. It might not always be possible, but it's important to treat someone like a human being who has worth. Many people in the prison system have had truly impoverished lives - not always in a financial sense, but in terms of love and human connection and feeling wanted and valued. As odd as it sounds, secure services could and should be a place where time is devoted to instilling a sense of worth in people. Research tells us that punishment doesn't stop people doing bad things, it just makes them more careful about being caught. But care and compassion and helping people get their needs met in safe or legal ways will be much more powerful in reducing the odds of ongoing offending behaviour.
Sadly, I don't think the resources are there right now, but I hope in the future we'll continue to move towards more of a model of positive rehabilitation.
(Oh, one more, from what I understand pretty much anyone in Ireland, regardless of education or qualification can call themselves counselor or therapist, how do you feel about this?)
This drives me nuts! Technically, it's the same with "psychologist" - it's not a protected title and anyone with a psychology degree could call themselves a psychologist.
There are varying levels of qualifications, and it's so important for anyone considering going for therapy to check the qualifications
of the person they go to. Any therapist worth their salt will be delighted to be asked. You could go on a weekend-long course in "Counselling Skills" and set up a practice if you wanted. The potential for damage is huge. At the other end of the spectrum, you have Clinical and Counselling Psychologists. Both will have completed an undergraduate degree and a doctorate degree, and may have further specialised training in certain therapy modalities, such as Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT). So always check!
Originally Posted by bobwilliams
I appear to have almost no empathy.
Been to concentration camps etc...zero effect.
Seriously,would this be considered healthy in your opinion?
I suppose the reason for the question is the fact that I've read that a lot of violent criminals can exibit such traits or is that moreso a lack of self control and self conscience?
Thanks in advance.
There are so many reasons that a person might not feel a level of empathy that they would expect to, and I couldn't possibly even begin to scratch the surface of that here. I would say, if you're truly concerned, a quick chat with your GP would be the best first step.