Psychology, why?

Fridays in Klinik Kesihatan are generally more relaxed work-wise. Meaning there are no appointments for NCD cases. We still run the ‘special’ clinics such as Quit Smoking Clinic, TB reviews, Methadone clinics, PEKA B40 enrollments and OKU/Kebajikan applications. Sometimes we arrange for IUCD insertions to be scheduled on that day too. Case discussion meetings are also held on Friday on top of weekly CMEs. Pop up clinics are run at the nearby old folks home. Retens are counted for and other miscellaneous activities happen on Day 5 of the week. It’s about tying loose ends, closing the book, planning for the coming week only to re-open on Monday.

Last Friday, no one took leave hence we were on full manpower. This leaves me plenty of time to catch up on my part-time study modules and assignments. It was difficult not to garner attention as curious minds wondered what was keeping me busy on my laptop. I had wanted my study journey to be low-key among colleagues but eventually the news caught on. I get the usual questions and skeptical remarks on top of really astonishing comments like

” Why degree and not masters?”

“What can you do with psychology?”

“We can redirect our methadone patients to her now – she can counsel every single one of them with her psych thing”

“Why are you doing this? 4 years for a degree? Only? You should take up masters in family medicine”

“It’s good to study something LIGHT like this on the side”

That last comment set my adrenaline rushing but I managed to keep it under control. I felt like making a photocopy of my module and give Topic 1 to read. Let’s see if that person could get past Philosophy first.

But maybe it’s my fault for not being able to sell my reasons well. I see a world where in the future, people will not only go for an annual cholesterol check but also their state of mind. As in exploring what their motivators are, their stress factors, and what has changed in their life. Are the kids growing up alright? Are you aging well? Did someone die? How are you coping?

I see a future where professionals and maybe their children will drown in their intoxicating thoughts or stuck at obstacles in their personal growth. They will need someone (another trustworthy professional who gets it) to untangle the mess and help them walk through the challenge in their private time. Away from prying eyes. In fact, I see doctor friends who might need help to sort out their loved ones battling addiction or something along those lines.

I see a future where psychologists are seen on par as a medical doctor in Malaysia. The psychology union would become stronger and will get everyone certified as who they study to become – clinical psychologists, organizational psychologists, criminal psychologists, educational psychologists, etc.

I see stigma on psychological related matters decreasing. Communities are accepting this as just another clinical condition that needs attention.

I see a future where people are fighting to get into a psychology course because everything in life has got to do with psychology.

It is a grandiose thought. But it’s motivating to find myself joining this clan. On a more personal note, I want my children to see that you could become anything you want, anytime you want as long as you work hard for it. I want them to know that if something doesn’t work out for you, you can always leave and create another path to suit your circumstances. InsyaAllah, with Allah’s blessing – everything would be fine.

Despite the unwelcoming remarks, I am grateful to have the support of similar minded individuals who thinks highly of education regardless of what level. It keeps me going. Trying to get better each time. Like Liverpool. Ha ha ha.

My anecdotes surrounding my studies are blogged more on NotaMinci. Feel free to visit me there.