Tens of thousands of miles away from his practice, a therapist accidentally discovers a new sense of purpose, unable to distinguish the act of giving from the act of love.
As a therapist these days, faced with all the grim realities of our times, it's hard to escape the admonitions about becoming more involved in community activism, social advocacy, or social justice work of some kind. It all sounds noble, praiseworthy, and important, but most of us are too busy trying to take care of our clients and keep our own heads above water to venture out to serve some larger cause. It's one thing to volunteer a few hours per week or take on some low-paying clients, but who has time to change the world when we already have our hands full trying to make a living and get through the obstacle course of a normal work week?
Nevertheless, much of the work I now do takes me thousands of miles away from my practice and my family for months at a time. I don't feel that I chose to embark on a different kind of professional pathway, nor do I have a clear idea of where I'm going next in my life. We regularly talk with our clients about the importance of making choices in life, but in my own experience, it often seems that some paths choose us.
I now spend several months each year working in remote regions of Nepal, helping lower-caste girls, who are at the greatest risk of being forced into early marriage or trafficked into sex slavery, by making it possible for them…