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News Items – October 27, 2022

news items logo oneAnita Daniels is a member of NASW-NC:
Why? The most difficult question about Raleigh’s mass shooting may never have an answer
Licensed clinical social worker Anita Daniels says one red flag can be a big change in personality. “It can be that they shrink back, or it could be that all of a sudden they have so much personality and so much to say,” she said. She also points out that the brain is not fully developed until the age of 25. “This section of the brain, where we are making good decisions, that’s the last part of the brain to develop,” she said.

Kristen Lee is a member of NASW-MA:
World Mental Health Day Isn’t Enough
Psychology Today
World Mental Health Day 2022 has technically passed. Green heart and solidarity emojis flooded our feeds. The theme, “make mental health & well-being for all a global priority”, is well timed, given the soaring rates of suffering, and the critical shortage of practitioners hovering. If there was ever a time to keep a campaign going, it’s now. With so much at stake, changes are essential to ensure that global mental health is truly prioritized, not just propagated. Here are three guideposts to enact this year’s theme.

Caitlin Canto is a member of NASW-NJ:
3 Signs You Need to Learn Healthier Communication Skills
Psychology Today
Most people lack relational communication skills. No one was taught how to communicate effectively, so it makes sense that it’s a struggle. People are taught how to speak, but good sentence structure and a wide range of vocabulary words won’t always lead to being understood or understanding others—the goal of communication. Effective communication requires much more than being able to speak.

Emily Lynch is a member of NASW-CT:
What to Do About Work Anxiety: A Therapist’s Top 3 Tips
Hartford Healthcare
Quiet quitting, worker burnout, the infamous “grind”: Work anxiety is as high as it’s ever been for Americans. The question is what to do about it. Whether you’re feeling the strain round the clock or just every now and then, Hartford HealthCare’s Emily Lynch, LCSW, has advice. “Anxiety makes us second-guess ourselves to the point of thinking, ‘I can’t manage that,’” says Lynch, a licensed clinical social worker with the Primary Care Behavioral Health team. “We need to remind ourselves, ‘I can do this. It might be challenging and it might be uncomfortable, but I can do it.’”

SaraKay Smullens is a member of NASW-PA; Chris McLaughlin is executive director of NASW-ME:
Film Review: The God Committee
The New Social Worker
To say I found viewing the film The God Committee disappointing in message and confusing in purpose is an understatement. After having limited available life-saving equipment and staff protection when hit by the 2020 pandemic, promotion of a film centering on an examination of how complex decisions are made in a hospital setting when there are not enough resources for those who need them seemed beyond timely. The God Committee, based on Mark St. Germain’s play by the same name (which premiered in July 2004), features members of an organ transplant committee in an urban hospital who in essence hold life or death in their hands. In this drama, they are the decision-makers who determine who among several candidates will receive an available heart.

Claire Lerner is a member of NASW-DE:
Mom’s Response to Breastfeeding Backlash Goes Viral: ‘Let’s Educate’
Claire Lerner, LCSW, a child development and parenting expert, told Newsweek that Emma is correct in that there is nothing wrong with a mother breastfeeding her 2-year-old. “It’s totally fine to nurse a 2-year-old,” Lerner said. “As [Emma] said, the WHO recommends it—breast milk is healthy for kids. [And] in other countries, it is not only accepted but valued to nurse kids into toddlerhood.” Based on her over 30 years of experience working with children and families, Lerner theorized that the aversion to breastfeeding “beyond infancy” boils down to two things. The first is that breastfeeding has become “sexualized,” she said.

Katie Leikam is a member of NASW-GA:
What Is A Gender Therapist?
This is when working with a gender therapist can be helpful. “A gender therapist, or gender specialist, is a licensed mental health therapist [who helps] clients to explore and process their gender identity,” says Katie Leikam, M.B.A., a licensed clinical social worker who is a gender therapist herself. How does this process work? Below, gender therapists explain exactly what gender therapy is, who can benefit from it and how to find a qualified gender therapist.

Teri Schroeder is a member of NASW-TX:
9 subtle signs of domestic abuse and how to get help
Every relationship is different, and only you and your partner can decide your boundaries around sharing devices or information. That said, a partner who accesses your communications and activities without your consent is violating your trust and right to privacy. If you know your partner is snooping on your devices, you may feel unsafe communicating with loved ones or develop anxiety about how messages from your friends or family will be interpreted, says Teri Schroeder, a licensed clinical social worker and cofounder of Just Mind Counseling.

Elizabeth Dosoretz is a member of NASW-FL:
Talking to children after Hurricane Ian
Licensed clinical social worker Elizabeth Dosoretz spoke to WINK News about how parents and other adults can help struggling kids after the hurricane. “Anything that we can do to allow kids to have a sense that not everything’s changed, not everything’s gone, there is predictability in the world, there is predictability… and there’s that comfort level,” Dosoretz said. Dosoretz says whenever and wherever possible, try to create a sense of life as it was before Ian. For Santiago, that’s being with his friends at school, because with no home, his dad had to leave town to work.

Social workers group call for state leaders to make changes to gun laws after Dallas hospital shooting
The National Association of Social Workers – Texas went on to call for changes from the state legislature. “Members of our profession are engaged in challenging work and spaces, but their safety and well-being should be a priority of the organizations they work in as well as the legislature of our state.  We call upon legislators to prioritize limiting access to firearms next session.  While no policy shifts will bring these lives back, the leaders in our state can prevent future tragedies,” the statement read.

Justin Perry is a member of NASW-NC:
Your Move, Adidas: Companies Break Ties With Kanye West
WCCB asked Justin Perry, a licensed clinical social worker in Charlotte, about the mental health aspect of all this. He says, “I do not work with Kanye professionally, so I won’t attempt to diagnose him. That said, in general, multiple things can be true. Persons can have mental illness that creates delusions, distorted thinking, and behavior that is far outside their baseline functioning and thinking. That said, someone can simultaneously or independently have personality disorder traits that lead to grandiosity, behavior some of us may think of as manipulative or opportunistic, and/or lacking conventionally accepted ethics….”

Kristen Lee is a member of NASW-MA:
What is Financial Trauma? And What to Do About It
Northeastern University
With inflation rising faster than expected in September and fears of a recession on the horizon, many Americans are feeling symptoms of financial stress that are typically characteristic of PTSD. “Seeing these kinds of downturns in the economy can be very provocative,” says Kristen Lee, a Northeastern University teaching professor, clinical social worker and expert in behavioral health and resilience. People may experience “difficulty concentrating and a flooding of anxiety,” she says. “It can be hard to focus on what is possible and who we can turn to.”

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