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  • Taking Home the Job

    Hey guys,

    I just wanted to ask what you tell your family and friends (if you tell them) when you come home from work and encounter a pretty gruesome or disturbing call. I would imagine that it would help relieve the stress you see everyday but I am not on the job so I wouldn't know. One more question, do you guys feel desensitized from the bad things you see? My high school CJ teacher was on the job 26 years and he says that after a while it doesn't affect him. I'm just asking if all officers feel this way.

    Thanks and stay safe.
    ks
    Sgt. Siek: Now to the rest of you, do you have what it takes to be the meanest, the cruelest, the most sadist unforgiving mother ****ers in God's cruel kingdom?
    All Marines: Yes, Staff Sergeant.
    Sgt. Siek: Will you be able to one day say, "Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for I am the baddest mother ****er in the God damn valley?"
    All Marines: Yes, Staff Sergeant.
    Sgt. Siek: We shall ****ing see.

  • #2
    I learned very early to not share the gruesome details of what I had seen the night before with my family.

    What your school teacher said is very true for me. It only took about 2-3 years for that to set in.
    The posts on this forum by this poster are of his personal opinion, and his personal opinion alone

    "Politicians are like diapers. They need to be changed often and for the same reason"

    "We fight not for glory; nor for wealth; nor honor, but only and alone we fight for freedom, which no good man surrenders but with his life"

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    • #3
      Originally posted by LA DEP View Post
      I learned very early to not share the gruesome details of what I had seen the night before with my family.

      What your school teacher said is very true for me. It only took about 2-3 years for that to set in.
      +1000, I used to tell my wife about my day when I went home to relieve stress. However, it starts to turn into them questioning things or getting upset so you just stop doing it and only tell them the exciting stuff or "made some traffic stops, wrote some tickets..."

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      • #4
        Originally posted by mikeymedic View Post
        +1000, I used to tell my wife about my day when I went home to relieve stress. However, it starts to turn into them questioning things or getting upset so you just stop doing it and only tell them the exciting stuff or "made some traffic stops, wrote some tickets..."
        Yup....I should have clarified that a bit;

        I am NOT saying to completely shut out 'the other half' from what you do.....that's a good way to end up divorced (typing from experience here), but you also do not want to share the little details of what the suicide call you handled the night before looked like.....where the guy used a shotgun to rearrange his head.
        The posts on this forum by this poster are of his personal opinion, and his personal opinion alone

        "Politicians are like diapers. They need to be changed often and for the same reason"

        "We fight not for glory; nor for wealth; nor honor, but only and alone we fight for freedom, which no good man surrenders but with his life"

        Comment


        • #5
          I understand what you guys are saying. My dad was a firefighter and I always used to ask him about car accidents, bad fires, etc. Just recently when I told him I was intrested in getting involved in LE he shared some of his stories. I now know why my mom never asked about his shift and why he would always avoid answering when i asked. But thanks for the answers.

          ks
          Sgt. Siek: Now to the rest of you, do you have what it takes to be the meanest, the cruelest, the most sadist unforgiving mother ****ers in God's cruel kingdom?
          All Marines: Yes, Staff Sergeant.
          Sgt. Siek: Will you be able to one day say, "Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for I am the baddest mother ****er in the God damn valley?"
          All Marines: Yes, Staff Sergeant.
          Sgt. Siek: We shall ****ing see.

          Comment


          • #6
            I will generally not tell Mrs Crass or the family what has occurred throughout the day...there have been times when its obvious something horrible has happened, (like watching a 9year old die), and I cant hold it in, (getting teary eyed now just thinkin about that one), but for the most part it can be dulled and desensitized over the years.

            Personally, after 10 plus years, the stuff with kids is still the worst, however I think its because I have kids so I tend to personalize those calls. Other peoples pain is another bad one, like on a death notification, but that is getting easier for me to deal with.

            Everything gets easier over the years, though...some more than others....A few years ago another officer and I were joking as I was literally PICKING HUMAN BRAIN MATTER OUT OF THE WAFFLE OF HIS BOOT WITH A NAIL.
            Dont let it get to you to the point where the effects of the job jeapardize your family, yourself or your job...most employers have a some sort of employee assistance/support program...USE IT if it gets to be too much before it destroys your life
            Last edited by crass cop; 04-02-2011, 08:37 PM.
            "I don't go on "I'maworthlesscumdumpster.com" and post negative **** about cum dumpsters."
            The Tick

            "Are you referring to the secret headquarters of a fictional crime fighter or penal complex slang for a-$$hole, anus or rectum?"
            sanitizer

            "and we all know you are a poser and a p*ssy.... "
            Bearcat357 to Dinner Portion/buck8/long relief

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            • #7
              Don't know about you guys, but I am pretty good at turning work off when I leave and not taking it home with me. That being said, I drive my girlfriend nuts when we are out and about and I'm profiling people and "being a cop". But as far as bad calls and the like, I can usually turn it off. I don't really even have many dreams about those types of things.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by crawfish963 View Post
                Don't know about you guys, but I am pretty good at turning work off when I leave and not taking it home with me. That being said, I drive my girlfriend nuts when we are out and about and I'm profiling people and "being a cop". But as far as bad calls and the like, I can usually turn it off. I don't really even have many dreams about those types of things.
                +1. The first couple of years I did share what I saw because it helped me but then I started thinking about how much people harp on this. I then started turning it off when I came home. Hasn't been a problem since. I don't tell my wife nothing and she doesn't ask. I don't get all paranoid when out, I do my scans and go about my business. I'm am starting to wonder that because its discussed so much that we feel as if we have to overcome this as a hurdle. Other words are we being conditioned to think this way?
                Disclaimer: The writer does not represent any organization, employer, entity or other individual. The views expressed are those only of the writer. In the case of a sarcastic, facetious, nonsensical, stirring-the-pot, controversial or devil's advocate-type post, the views expressed may not even reflect those of the writer [This sig stolen from Brickcop who stole it from Frank Booth].

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                • #9
                  I turn it off whether I want to or not. I think I block about 90% of my day when I take my uniform off. It's a little protection and a lot "don't care."

                  As far as desensitizing and cynicism and the rest that comes with it, I was all that well before police work.
                  LOST:
                  Individual Responsibility
                  If found, please return to society.

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                  • #10
                    I don't tell my family about this stuff. I don't want them having that view of humanity. What good can come of telling them? Unless there is some personal safety value, I just stick to the funny, the crazy, and the typical job related stuff (bosses in your arse, issues with co-workers, stuff anyone can relate to).

                    If you don't learn to tune this stuff out it will drive your insane. You can't make every tragedy your own personal tragedy. This isn't cop specific. I'm sure nurses at nursing homes or hospices learn the same coping skills dealing with death constantly.
                    I miss you, Dave.
                    http://www.odmp.org/officer/20669-of...david-s.-moore

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                    • #11
                      Although I'll add to this:

                      People are naturally curious about our jobs. People don't understand when we say "I don't wanna talk about it" or "it was a boring night" when the news reports all kinds of actions. The biggest issue I have isn't turning off the job, it's dealing with "never beens" and "wanna be's" that want to do nothing but talk about shop when they've got no idea what its really like. you know the kind I mean:

                      -quote movies/tv shows like they were personally involved or that they represent the real police world
                      -say stupid stuff like "man it'd be cool to get into a gunfight"
                      -ask stupid legal questions when all you wanna do is unwind and chill
                      -tell you stories of how they called in a tip and why they should be a narc

                      It really is easy for me to turn off the job. I'm losing my patience in dealing with the above listed people. I have a family member who is a wannabe and recently at a family gathering they were touting how "awesome" it'd be to "cap someone" in home defense. I snapped and simply asked (insert knife hand pointing at them) "How many shootings have you been in? I've been involved in one and can tell you that there is nothing cool or fun about it. It smells like sweat blood and fear and if I go my entire career and never have another I'll be happy."

                      They just don't get it.

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                      • #12
                        I'm lucky in that if I need to share I can. I don't go into great gory detail all the time but can if I need to. My wife was an RN & some of her stories turned MY stomach. Between these professions & day to day life on a small ranch, our dinner conversations would gross most people out. When I was in investigations, my wife could tell when I was working a child abuse case, or something else was eating at me. Our youngest son is an officer now, so alot of shop is talked when he stops by. With him it's more rookie excitement or dealing with supervision. But it is neat to hear him talk, and it kind of rekindles some of what I got into this job for in me.

                        My high school CJ teacher was on the job 26 years and he says that after a while it doesn't affect him.
                        I speak with 27 years on, and feel that it is more that you learn coping skills to where it doesn't affect your performance. If you see things like we see & it don't affect you; you ain't right. And yes, among these coping skills is the gallows humor.
                        Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God MATT 5:9

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                        • #13
                          I don't generally talk about calls with the wife, but I do sometimes talk about some of the office politics with her. She's the only person I trust who I can talk to and it won't get back to the chain of command, lol.

                          There are lots of nut suckers in my dept. (who want to move up or protect what they've got) who wouldn't hesitate to drop me in the grease, or anyone for that matter. Given this, I prefer to vent with the wife if I feel like I need to.

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                          • #14
                            My wife is one of our medics so my life is generally exponentially easier. We've been on scene's together that were horrible to a level I don't care to discuss. When we make it home together in one piece that's what matters. We are close enough that we don't really have to talk about something job related unless it's a necessity.
                            Sometimes, doing the right thing means p***ing off the bosses.

                            "And shepherds we shall be, for thee my lord for thee."

                            Originally posted by dontknowwhy
                            I still think troopers and deputies who work in the middle of no where with essentially no back up are the 'men among men' of the LEO world.
                            Originally posted by weinerdog2000
                            as far as your social experiment, if we cant film you then you cant film us, we will arrest you for obstruction of our freedom.

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                            • #15
                              My husband hears about everything. Why wouldn't he? I told the ex as well (when we were married). I don't know if it's a mars/venus thing, but I don't feel the need to protect my spouse by NOT telling them what I went through. This topic has been discussed several times and I can't help but wonder why men think their wives can't handle hearing about stuff. So my questions is whether YOU don't want to discuss it or you think she can't understand it? I would garner many of your wives are made of stronger stuff than that and Lord knows the world isn't a 'nice' place so I doubt you'd be busting any sort of lifeisgreat bubble.

                              I don't know. I don't think I understand the POV with regards to this particular topic. Perhaps it is nothing more than a gender issue.
                              sigpic

                              I don't agree with your opinion, but I respect its straightforwardness in terms of wrongness.

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