Planned Obsolescence

I gave a lunchtime talk yesterday for our acute care department on how to treat separation anxiety in children.  My agency is severely understaffed for all sorts of therapists, and I am the only one who knows how to work with children.  We have an abundance of people seeking therapy for their children, and I can’t see all of them.  I plan to retire in two years, and it doesn’t look promising to find a replacement for me who knows how to do child therapy.  I need to make myself obsolete.

The dear folks in our acute care department are good social workers and counselors, but they are unaccountably terrified of treating children. They admit they are afraid of saying the wrong thing and ruining the child for life. That is irrational thinking on the staff’s part.  I decided that I need to train as many of them as I can before I leave so that they can feel comfortable treating children, and so that children’s services can continue after I leave. Separation anxiety is really easy to treat if you know how, and I thought it was a good place to start. They enjoyed the talk today, and want to know about Oppositional Defiant Disorder and Conduct disorder next month.  I can hardly wait to give them the skinny on elimination disorders.

What would you like to teach people to do or to know about?

33 thoughts on “Planned Obsolescence”

  1. So glad I’m not in your shoes, Renee. That has to be an awful position to be in, knowing how important that work is, and how badly needed, but also being aware that it may not continue after you retire. Is there a shortage of therapists that specialize in working with children in general, or are they just loath to move to your area of North Dakota? I’m also wondering about the prevalence of mental health issues in children. Are they more common now, or how we just become more aware of such issues and/or better at diagnosing them early on?

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I think there are fewer people who want to work with children, and there are fewer people who want to work in a rural area. There are a few more private providers in town now, but not enough to pick up the slack or see low income families with limited insurance. My agency operates on a sliding fee scale.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. i would think that would qualify as negligence and abuse by the state of north dakota.

    sorry you have needs that are life challenging and the impact of not being looked after will have terrible consequences but we don’t want to find pay for or deal with it.

    i think now that we realize the impact of having children be left to figure out the way to deal with the crap life hands them , not handeling it should be punishable by a major whack. jail time, being replaced as the responsible decision maker etc

    you should make yourself available for children like your husband does 3,days a week after retirement but charge for it as a consultant with travel expenses factored in. $2000 a day is about right.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. We have plans to contract with the State to do psychological evaluations after we retire. The State is trying desperately to hire, but no one is applying. I believe it has to do with the rural nature of the State.

      Liked by 2 people

        1. All the money they’ve been saving by saying that they’re not able to hire people for the last five or 10 years because no one wants to apply for the job should begin to cover it

          Liked by 1 person

      1. A psychologist biz that focuses on rural areas could be a thriving business model. Get a little airplane or a fleet of them and send the hires out like they are in a weekly milk route but with needed help for children. What would it cost? What is the cost of not doing it?

        Liked by 1 person

        1. You make it sound so simple. I have the same problem with scenic design. I get stuck in the details before I get the design finished. I’m violating all sorts of design rules when I do that; gotta let the ideas flow before squashing them. But still. Airplanes? A fleet?? But… how??
          (I’m not trying to sound snotty about this; it’s a serious question and a serious discussion).

          Liked by 3 people

  3. How to read a blue print, prepare a subfloor to receive flooring but mostly how to be on time. The people I’m trying to educate are chronically late. I’ve offered a wake-up call service, threatened and cajoled to no avail. Young’uns just wanna sleep in.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. My outdoor buddy is an emergency room doc in Helena. He is employed by a clinic that includes less than a dozen physicians. As long as I can remember his group has struggled to attract new partners. The money isn’t great, especially when set against what physicians are paid in metro areas. Winters can be hard in Montana. As much as anything, the rural lifestyle seems to put off potential partners. Helena is a lovely city but has few cultural amenities to lure in new docs.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. my dads buddy moved to helena because it’s the best place in the world for an outdoorsman hunter fisherman sort. trout pheasant elk deer duck goose mountains streams and all this for a guy who grew up in fargo
      you say they got nothing? he’d say you’re crazy


      1. You misunderstand, tim. I share my friend’s love of all the outdoor splendors of that region. My friend’s physician group tries to use that as a recruiting tool. Sadly, few applicants put the same value on outdoor recreation that my friend and I do.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. I’m currently trying to teach two things in preparation for when I will be out of commission: how to deal with the household paperwork and how to access my digital photos. The first one is not going very well.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. We need more lighting people in this area. I train some college students but they leave town for bigger colleges. There’s only about 3 people in town that are actually practicing lighting design and up on the latest technologies. And two of us have jobs. The third guy just retired and is doing more lighting.
    It’s hard to get people interested and keep them interested. Partially because you need some other job that has to have the flexibility to allow you to do lighting and some other way to pay the bills. Lighting design around here isn’t a full time job.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. YES! I’m in the middle of that now. I’ve heard I’m being talked about and rumors are running about me but not one of the people has actually said anything to me yet. And I’ve also heard they’ve been told by at least two other people “Just talk to him!”. Yes, please. No one likes confrontation, but it doesn’t have to be nasty; it’s OK to disagree and we HAVE to keep it civil and we HAVE to talk it out and figure out how to work around whatever *it* is. But please, can we just talk??

      (When I was told someone quit because of an email I wrote I said If that’s all it takes I’m sending an email to Drumpf! ) 🙂

      Liked by 5 people

    2. There are several incidents with extended family that come to mind, one on our recent road trip, but I have also been guilty of the same… can’t think of a particular one that would be fun telling. : )

      I also notice at committee and board meetings, when we spend the time someone is explaining his/herself, planning our response. Again, notice the we.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. i have lots of things i’m interested in getting out there
    my top of the list item is my givcuz company where people support the cause they care about with dollars they were going to spend anyway.
    buying gas, groceries, oil changes, pizza, life’s everyday stuff from a business that’s willing to give a percentage of each transaction to your cause … is an idea i’ve been working on for years . it’s finally ready and i’m going to be pushing it for the foreseeable future

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I should have mentioned earlier, Renee, that the inability of the state to replace you with a similarly gifted therapist is tragic. I’m sure your work is important and is a godsend to the families and the little folks you help. I sure hope they do find a good person to carry on this good work.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. The older I get, the less ambitious I am to teach anyone anything. Besides, I can’t think of a thing that I know or know how to do, that anyone would be interested in learning.

    I wish I could convince myself that procrastination is not a virtue worth perfecting, alas it seems like a rut I’m stuck in. Just today I finally picked my Medicare supplemental plan and sent in my application. I fretted about that more and way longer than I should have.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I would like people to know more about resources, how to fix things instead of buying new things, and how to avoid buying products in packaging that doesn’t get recycled, even though most people think it’s being recycled. Single use plastics are a big topic right now. I really try not to take the styrofoam cup or the straw or whatever it is that is being held out in the name of convenience. It takes real dedication, though.

    Liked by 1 person

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