The stigma that was attached to drug addicts and alcoholics a few years ago seems to have moved on to their counselors as well. Given below is a small list of some of the major reasons why counselors these days stay away from handling substance abuse issues:
1. The chances of success with your patients are extremely low.
2. Almost everyone you work with is a criminal.
3. Your patients won't really be interested in quitting.
4. Your clients will manipulate facts and lie whenever they can to get themselves out of a tight situation.
5. As a substance abuse counselor, you won't be well respected in society like regular counselors.
6. It's not going to make you a millionaire anytime soon.
These are just 6 of the main reasons why most professionals shy away from becoming substance abuse counselors. But this doesn't mean that you should do the same. Given below are a few reasons why becoming a substance abuse counselor might just work out:
1. The first reason isn't really something that would push you towards this job. In fact it might just do the exact opposite. But the fact of the matter is sometimes people are just looking for something challenging to do in life. There is nothing which can compare to the satisfaction of succeeding at something which most others consider impossible is there? And just think of how happy you will be when you see someone who you have helped put their lives back together.
2. You will never have to worry about job security with this job. The number of people that are hooked on drugs and alcohol aren't going to reduce anytime soon. And as long as there are people out there that are addicted to substance abuse, you will always have something to do. The only way you can be left without a job is if you manage to cure every single person's drug or drinking problems. And that is something that definitely won't happen.
3. While others might view your patients as people that are addicted to certain substances this might not always be the case. There might be some deeper, underlying issues which they aren't expressing that are causing them to resort to drugs. Maybe it's the stress of life? Maybe it's something else? It is your job, as a counselor, to find out why exactly they are using drugs. This will help you gain respect for your patients as well.
4. And lastly, substance abuse counseling is a considerably new type of counseling and therefore offers quite a lot of opportunities for career growth. After all, when there aren't too many people in the industry, how difficult can it be for you to become to best in the field? I'm sure it's a lot easier than becoming the best lawyer in the country. So why not give it a shot.