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Danger to Self: On the Front Line with an ER Psychiatrist
This book is in the top five books I've read in the past year.
This is not quite an entertainment, so those who look for "hot stories about crazy people" will probably be a little disappointed. The author does not display people in distress like the human circus; he tells their stories in a calm and compassionate manner with respect for who they are and where they come from.
Psych ER is a highly stressful environment with insanity pushed to its limits; patients represent a danger to self, or others, and to keep oneself not just calm and professional but respectful and sensitive to others' pain is a gift.
I like how Dr. Linde places main focus on his patients and the hospital/city environment, not himself; this allows seeing unfolding dramatic stories in a context of a bigger picture of current medical/urban reality. At the same time there is a strong author's presence in this book, and his personality gradually reveals itself through little phrases, observations, and humor.
I enjoyed every story and I highly recommend this book to those who are in the process of becoming mental health professionals or just curious what it is like to be a psych doctor in ER.
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Posted September 15, 2010
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