Compassion fatigue describes the stress experienced by those who work with people with trauma. It’s more common in helping professions, such as counseling, nursing, teaching, clergy, and social work. Details of the trauma often surround professionals who assist people dealing with the consequences of trauma. Hearing stories about people’s darkest, most horrendous moments can take a toll on professionals. Hearing these stories can cause mental distress, which can trickle into physical problems.
Therapist interventions for compassion fatigue include working on setting boundaries, ensuring there is the proper time for self-care, and disrupting negative thought patterns with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), mindfulness-based stress reduction tactics, and group therapy.