Have you ever called a crisis hotline? (or answered calls for one?)
May 30, 2014 9:36 PM Subscribe
Can you please tell me about the best (and worst) things about your experience? Ideas of things to say, what NOT to say if answering hotline calls...what helped you (as a caller), or what didn't?
posted by Shadow Boxer to Human Relations (15 answers total) 24 users marked this as a favorite
I'm about to complete a volunteer certification program as a crisis counselor/advocate for a local hotline (as well as going on hospital/police/court accompaniment, but I'm mostly focusing on the hotline work for this question). My exam is on Tuesday, which includes a mock call, and I'm just looking for a bit of outside advice from people who have experience either calling a crisis hotline or answering the calls. (I can add what kind of crisis specifically if that would help but wanted to keep it more general for now). Can you please tell me about the best (and worst) things about your experience? Ideas of things to say, what NOT to say if answering hotline calls...what helped you (as a caller), or what didn't?
I feel like I have the advocate part down and a good handle on the different procedures someone who has experienced this particular type of crisis might go through, as well as all the local resources that would be available be available to them, but I feel still feel a bit shaky on the actual counseling part. The part where you calmly help someone who's in crisis instead of stumbling through all the new info you've just learned, and worrying about saying the wrong thing (hopefully I'm not as out of my element as I feel!)
So what I'd like to know is if you've ever called a crisis hotline -- what was your experience like? What was most helpful to you? What was least helpful? Obviously, this will vary person to person. or if you've ever worked for a crisis hotline, do you have any advice?
(And if this sounds weird that my exam is Tuesday and I'm asking very basic questions...the primary focus of the class was about facts/statistics/issues and local resources. It seemed to almost take for granted that the volunteers would be either be people in school studying things like counseling or people who worked in the field. I feel a bit out of my element because I have no counseling experience).
Anyway, any help would be greatly appreciated! Help me to help them!