My Own Private Hasan

November 18, 2009

The foster care orientation was well attended, like 30 or 35 people. We were the only obviously gay people there and only one of two white couples. Definetely in the running for the youngest. A foster parent spoke, which was cool, particularly because she was a former foster kid. She was upbeat and thoughtful and cheery. It was nice. She talked at length about co-parenting with kids’ biological parents, which I really dug. As it pertains to us, we can’t even submit an application, or lift a finger toward the myriad requirements, until we’ve had residency for 6 months. So the earliest we could imagine applying would be next November.

I called a realtor yesterday and she hasnt returned the call. I’m also about 30 percent finished rolling two old 403Bs into my new 401K. That’s right, a lot of important, adult stuff happening down here in the basement.

Finally, I am beginning to wonder if one of my coworkers is mentally ill, in a personality disorder kind of way — think narcissistic features — which is bad, since he and I are mental health professionals working with families who are dealing with mental illness, so shit’s starting to get . . . kind of ill. I’m in a real swirl about it and all of the coverage of Nidal Malik Hasan isn’t helping — or maybe it is.

He complains that he doesnt like my tone of voice, that I condescend and “therapize” him. His energy is tight and thick. He has a tick. I dont like being alone with him. He is smarmy and schmoozy one second and condescending and sarcastic the next second, and toots his own horn every third second. He responds to criticism with disdain and resistance and says that he feels he is being humilated. Not good signs.

He’s the kind of guy that makes you wanna document. everything.

I’ve told my supervisor that I think he has mental health problems and she said simply, “I’m working on it,” which hopefully means, “I know, youre right and he’ll be out of here by the time you get back from San Francisco.” I bring my concerns about his clinical decision-making and our interpersonal challenges to two different group supervisions during which he is present. I’ve met with him individually twice.

My agency has a fantastic system of group and peer supervision. We’ve done a good job of addressing problems in a very transparent and cooperative spirit, but in my gut I feel like we are avoiding the real problem and that the real problem is dangerous. Worst case scenario — something violent happens. Middle case scenario — a family gets sick of us and drops out of treatment. And lastly, best case scenario — I reach the brink of total emotional collapse two days before taking maternity leave.


3 Responses to “My Own Private Hasan”

  1. A. said

    Aaaaaaaaah I have been in workplaces with awesome collaborative supervision where sometimes the problem was that everyone was too hellbent on being awesome to actually confront hard issues. I am happy your workplace seems nominally supportive but this is some hard shit; a scary co-worker is so effin’ draining in these scenarios. Take care of yourself lady, and ENJOY YOUR VACATION. 🙂

  2. A Basement said

    […] that there is no doubt that I will get the raise that goes with my license. Hey. You remember that weird co-worker I mentioned? He was fired the third week of November after making veiled threats toward me. And, […]

  3. […] But, at this job, I have to say bit is shannanas! […]

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