Caring for the carers

For many professionals in the so-called caring fields of nursing and psychiatry, compassion fatigue can be a sign of secondary traumatic stress, writes Arlene Harris

23rd December, 2018
3
Niamh Hannan, chartered counselling psychologist, Mindworks Pic: Maura Hickey

She has always been a caring person who others sought out when times were hard, but two years ago, Maria O’Connor reached breaking point.

It wasn’t that she had lost interest in helping others, but physically and mentally she couldn’t take any more. She began to show signs of compassion fatigue.

“Ever since I was a child, I’d loved looking after people,” says O’Connor. “First it was helping my...

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