“The” Counselor / Therapist

Written on April 28, 2024  Published Same Day.

I have written about this topic before.  And…I don’t think I am going to write enough about the topic.

Following a misunderstanding from a student, I was placed on paid administrative leave only to be allowed to return to the classroom TEN WEEKS LATER.  I am grateful for the student to have made an attempt to explain there was a misunderstanding between her and the administration.  Yet, her attempt was too late.

During the ten weeks, I heard from a band parent, he had a meeting with the Superintendent.  At that meeting, the Superintendent told the band parent, “Part of Paul’s ‘problem’ is he loves his students too much.  He cares about them too much.”

My response?  Put that on my tombstone.  “Her lies a teacher who cared  about and loved his students too much.”

Part of my return to the classroom was to agree to weekly therapy sessions to help with this “problem.”

I had requested a “Christian Counselor.”

The school district could not find one (FUNNY!   The district could have found any other counselor (gay / BIPOC / Muslim / etc.) but a “Christian Counselor?”  Now, that is a real challenge).

I ended up having a very nice man whose office was in a church in Dublin, CA.  A counselor whose office was in a church was the closest to the request the district could meet.

Bad Therapy

I just started reading Abigail Shrier’s “Bad Therapy:  Why The Kids Aren’t Growing Up.”  The first ten pages have been EYE-OPENING.  Here are several quotes from the book:

  • “Iatrogenesis” is the word for all of it.  From the Greek, Iatrogenesis literally means “originating with the healer.” and refers to the phenomenon of a healer harming a patient in the course of treatment.  Most often, it is not malpractice, thought it can be.  Much of iatrogenesis occurs not because of a doctor is malicious or incompetent but because treatment exposes a patient to exogenous risks.” Page 7
  • “With interventions, a good rule of thumb is:  Don’t go in for an X-ray if you don’t need one.  Don’t expose yourself to the germs of an ER just to say hello to your doctor friend.  And – just maybe – don’t send your kid off to therapy unless she absolutely requires it.  Everyone knows the first two; it’s the last one that may surprise you.”  Page 7
  • “Well-meaning therapists often act as though talking through your problems with a professional is good for everyone.  That isn’t so.  Nor is it the case that as long as the therapist is following protocols, and has good intentions, the patient is bound to get better.  Any intervention potent enough to cure is also powerful enough to hurt.  Therapy is no benign folk remedy.  It can provide relief.  It can also deliver unintended harm and does so in up to 20 percent of patients.”  Page 8
  • “Therapy can hijack our normal processes of resilience, interrupting our psyche’s ability to heal itself, in its own way, at its own time.” Page 9

And those are only several quotes from the first 13 pages!

Grateful for the Book

What this has book has taught me thus far – I AM SO GRATEFUL I AM – a Christian!  What that district-approved-therapist could have done to me?  My goodness!  Now, I am even more grateful for requesting a “Christian counselor.”  There were times when he questioned why the district was mandating this counseling for me.  However, he was getting paid.  There was no sense of urgency.

In fact when we (district leaders / me) had a “final” meeting to close this “misunderstanding,” the Superintendent, “You are still going to the counselor?”  He was surprised.  “You do know that this is costing the district.”

What an incredible state from the Superintendent.  LAUGHABLE!  It was not my choice to go the counselor.

Jesus: THE Counselor

We now go to the point  of another article from me saying, “GO TO JESUS CHRIST!”

He will be called wonderful counselor. 

Isaiah 9:6 NIV  –  For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders.  And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

Why is Jesus called ‘Wonderful Counselor?”  

Please.  Before you go to a therapist / counselor, GO TO JESUS CHRIST!

Buy THE BIBLE.  I enjoy the NIV and ESV, as well as, THE MESSAGE.

Go church shopping.  Connect with fellow “broken people.”  Everyone in that church is broken and each person is going to Jesus for “the fix.”

Beginning September 24, 2013, life has had many challenges.  There really is NO WAY I could have survived all those challenges in the last eleven years if I did not lean in on Jesus.  Believe in Jesus as my Counselor.

Have Been Blessed

When I came back from the ten weeks of paid administrative leave, the following happened:

  1. April 2014 – Took band and color guard to Chicago.  The band earned a gold medal for their performance in Symphony Hall.  Had a very good friend clinic the band and told them how proud he was they stayed in band and supported me.  Emotional experience.
  2. January 2016 – The high school jazz band received “STRAIGHT 1’s” for their outstanding performance at the Folsom Jazz Festival.  First time the high school jazz band earned “STRAIGHT 1’s” at that jazz festival.
  3. March 2016 – Took the band and color guard to Bray, Ireland.  Marched in the St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Bray, Ireland.  Won an outstanding performance award in that parade.
  4. November 2016 – The marching band and color guard earned their first sweepstakes trophy in over ten years!
  5. Most importantly?!  I kept my promise to the Class of 2017 that I would stay for all four of their high school years and modeled for them, when accused of things you didn’t do – DEFEND YOURSELF!  Following that 2016-17 school year, we moved.  Jesus Christ gave me the message time to move your “tent.”  And then…

If you need a prayer or support, send me an email  band2gether@comcast.net

YOU CAN DO IT.  Get through each day and make the next day better.  Love ya.  God bless.