From the Frontline: The View From A Veteran Caseworker
Five Super Powers I Wish I Had:
- The ability to stop time. There is NEVER enough time in the day. You end up working 12 hour days (still getting paid for 8) and you don’t have a life outside of work. Oh, and you would have time to eat!
- Predicting the future. You use your best judgment and the “skills” you learned in formal education and training. Then the real world is totally different. Your “gut instinct” isn’t something you can prove and means absolutely nothing in court, and sometimes people’s behavior defies all logic. The result is life and death: breaking up families or leaving a child in a potentially dangerous situation. You can never be 100% sure of anything.
- Teleportation. So much of your time is spent traveling and it is so frustrating. And some babies cry in cars… A lot! Visiting kids in residential treatment can be hours away, and it is exhausting to drive that much! If only you could dial a phone number and automatically arrive in body at that destination.
- Be invisible…with a recorder. You know stuff goes on behind closed doors and you know it isn’t good. You know a toddler has too many unexplained injuries that don’t make sense. You sense the tension between mom and her boyfriend but they don’t put words on it and neither can you.
- Make it all better. You wish you could make a parent stop using heroin because her five-year-old remembers the mom he had when she was sober and he only wants her back. You wish you could take the three-year-old home with you because the foster parents you just met have a house full of kids and seem short on patience.
Are you a caseworker? What super powers do you wish you had?