The wounded healer interview series features people who’ve dealt with significant mental health challenges, and who also work in a helping role to support the mental health of others.
This interview is with Wrae Sanders of One Blog, One Day at a Time.
1) Tell us a bit about you, the helping field you’re in, and the mental health challenges you’ve faced.
I have anxiety and depression. I’m currently on medication. I also have three years sobriety from alcohol. I’m a behavioral health technician at a sober living facility.
2) What made you decide to go into your helping field? Did your mental health challenges play a role?
I like helping people plus I know what it’s like to be in a bad place emotionally. I also liked learning about why people do what they do.
3) How have your own mental health challenges influenced the helping work you do?
At one point, my depression pushed me to work harder because it was a great distraction. It also makes me more empathetic.
4) Do you think you’re a more effective helper because of your own mental health challenges? How so?
Yes. I’ve been in some of the same situations so I can put myself in someone’s shoes.
5) Have you chosen to share your own mental health challenges with any of your patients/clients? What influenced that choice?
I have to an extent- it really depends on the situation. I think it helps the patient/client realize they’re not alone and that we go through things too.
6) Has your training or experience in your helping field changed how you approach your own illness or mental health challenges?
Yes. I know that there is a stigma of having mental health issues but it’s okay to get treated. I have seen what happens when you don’t.
7) What advice would you give to someone who has faced mental illness or other mental health challenges and is thinking about entering your helping field?
Make sure you’re ready to share your story because it might help someone. Of course, use appropriate boundaries.
Visit Wrae on her blog One Blog, One Day at a Time.