We have all felt the pings of depression, that overwhelming feeling of severe loss and of all hope. Animal advocates that are fighting-the-good-fight can fall prey to what is termed compassion fatigue. The following is an article that will help you recognize the symptoms of compassion fatigue. If you are an animal advocate please know that your work is valuable and you are never alone! read on:
Compassion Fatigue from In Defense of Animals by Deborah Brister, June 4, 2014
Do you know someone (perhaps yourself) who has suddenly awakened to the reality of animal exploitation and abuse in the meat, dairy, clothing, cosmetics, or entertainment industry? It is wonderful to observe these people as their internal light bulbs turn on; they vigorously work on the front lines of animal rescue, attend animal rights events, and amp up their advocating presence on social media. Animal rights is their main topic of conversation and their passion is undeniably admirable.
But after awhile, a strange thing happens. Many of those same advocates suddenly become despondent, the fire subsides, and a degree of complacency covers their energy like a wet blanket. What happened? Burnout? Maybe. Or it could be Compassion Fatigue. Ever heard of it? Also known as Vicarious Traumatization and Secondary Traumatic Stress Disorder, Compassion Fatigue is the negative, deleterious effect of working with those affected by trauma and suffering. Compassion Fatigue can have similar symptoms to burnout, however the onset of Compassion Fatigue can occur more rapidly than burnout, and it can resolve itself more readily. [to read full article click HERE]