Empire State - Addictions Studies

Discussion in 'Nursing and medical-related degrees' started by Kizmet, Jan 23, 2020.

  1. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator Staff Member

  2. Vonnegut

    Vonnegut Active Member

    While to each their own.... and I support those who want to help.... I'm not sure I can think of a more depressing subject matter to spend years studying, than that degree.
  3. LearningAddict

    LearningAddict Well-Known Member

    I can. Thanatology.
  4. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator Staff Member

  5. Vonnegut

    Vonnegut Active Member

    Last edited: Jan 25, 2020
  6. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator Staff Member

  7. Steve Levicoff

    Steve Levicoff Well-Known Member

    Actually, an addictions degree can be fun - and can put one in great demand, especially because the field has grown so much. It's also a field in which many (most, at some treatment centers) addictions professionals are themselves recovering alcoholics or addicts. That's just the nature of the field.

    As for the study of death and dying, that's a standard part of medical ethics (which I have taught). And we're all gonna go through it. To me, while I have no desire to rush the process, death is simply the last great adventure. The only problem is that you can only experience it once. Take this classic by Daffy Duck, for example:

  8. Vonnegut

    Vonnegut Active Member

    When I was in my younger it didn't bother me much, was just part of life. As I've grown older, I guess my perception has changed. Used to enjoy reading Eastern philosophy when I was in my twenties, which of course I imagine many people do. About the only books from that era I still keep are the Tao of Pooh... love the simplicity of it, and of course the Te of Piglet. Nothing like a bit of Asian culture from a white guy with a beard in Portland. I'll add that book to my cart and try reading through it some time.

    It never really bothered me when I was younger, even when some close family members passed away or when I was responding to incidents. A few years back, lost a son during childbirth, since than it's just been harder to deal with. Over the holiday break, I was the first responder to a patient with some serious internal injuries that I couldn't treat. Was at the point where all I could do was hold his hand as he passed and provide some dignity and respect. Still bothers me, weeks later.
  9. Steve Levicoff

    Steve Levicoff Well-Known Member

    Ah, but (speaking of a world of difference), Portland, Oregon, or Portland, Maine?
    In a weird way, that's part of the beauty of it - realizing that we are not in control and being able to accept that notion. When I first studied medical ethics (which I would end up teaching), my purpose was to know what to do if I had to make life-related or treatment-related decisions for my parents. I ultimately had to, and the preparation for that paid off big time. Then I refocused on being able to make the same decisions, ultimately, for myself, and that's put me in a good position with my physicians - many of whom were never properly trained in these areas. It still amazes me how some physicians are totally uncomfortable dealing with or even discussing death-and-dying issues.

    Of all the things I've read over the years, the one that still stands out the most is Elisabeth Kübler-Ross's 1969 book On Death and Dying - it's a classic. And I've met enough people over the years that have mastered those concepts to the point that they never had to go through the so-called five stages of death and dying.

    I always found it interesting that, although most of the courses I taught were focused on church-state issues and pastoral law, the medical ethics courses I taught were the ones that packed out the most in terms of number of students. They were also the ones that confronted students the most with the issues they would ultimately face personally.

    Yet all that preparation becomes inadequate when the unexpected happens - like when your helicopter goes down on your way to a basketball game, or any time a parent loses a child (especially when it's unexpected). You just do the best you can and move on...

    So much for waxing philosophic. :rolleyes:
  10. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Well-Known Member

    Since working as a Substance Abuse Counselor was my first big kid job I feel compelled to dispel a misconception or two. Addiction Studies is not depressing. The effects of substance abuse, on the other hand, are incredibly depressing. Helping someone overcome an addiction that has overtaken their life is simultaneously rewarding and completely thankless. You see much more relapse than success and even your success stories can be one pink slip away from relapse even years down the road.

    The place where I worked was also a hell hole that no one went to voluntarily. That did not help things. It almost certainly contributed to my burnout in studying psychology midway through my B.A. Still, the "success" stories stick out as glimmers of hope. I had former professionals who had lost their licenses and careers and families and, in the case of a former dentist who was living on the streets, their homes. The idea that you can lose it all to that extreme is, indeed, depressing. That's because addiction is depressing. Addiction studies? That's really the only hope to get away from the depressing thing.

    I would disagree that thanatology is depressing. We all die. A lot of people don't want to ever think about that. But it's fact. And we will be dead for a lot longer than we were ever alive. I often think about what my final days might be like. I've resolved that I'd like my death to be either quick or peaceful, preferably both but I'd settle for one.
    Johann likes this.
  11. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    I'd like ... make that I fully expect - to be shot by a jealous husband, at age 96. It'd be quick, clean and oh-so-justified. 19 years to go - and counting. :)
  12. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Well-Known Member

    I'm significantly younger than 96 and the thought of going out and finding a fling exhausts me today. I cannot imagine I would be more motivated at 96...

    For the record, apparently "that sounds exhausting" wasn't the response my wife was hoping for. Plus side, there will be leftover pineapple from the edible arrangement I'll need to order now!

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