Play Through the Pain? - The Impact of Forbidden Knowledge on Security and Intelligence Professionals presented at SourceDublin 2017

by Richard Thieme,

Summary : The real cost of professional intelligence goes far beyond dollars. It is measured in families, lives, relationships, mental and physical well-being. The divorce rate is as high among them as among medical professionals, for good reason - how can there be relationships based on trust when one's primary commitments make truth-telling and disclosure impossible?
Richard Thieme has been around that space for years. He has listened to people in pain because of the consequences of their actions, the misfiring of imperfect plans, and the burden of - for example - listening to terrorists slit someone's throat in real time, then acting as if they had a normal day at the office.
The bottom line is, trauma and secondary trauma have identifiable symptoms and they are everywhere. Living as a "social engineer," always trying to understand the other's POV so one can manipulate and exploit it, erodes our core selves. This challenge is not abstract or philosophical, it's an existential challenge, and people in "the agencies," deep inside, are vulnerable to these assaults on their authenticity and integrity. Sometimes their sanity is at stake, and sometimes, life is at stake, too.
Richard presented this talk at SOURCE Boston 2016 along with a complimentary workshop, and it was very well received.