MEMORIES OF A RURAL COUNTRY SHRINK (Soft Cover)
by Dr. Verdun Trione « View this author's BIO
Fresh out of graduate school I lost my academic virginity when I took a job in the rural and coastal area of northern California. I felt I was oriented to bring psychological services to schools and agencies. I had grown up among the vineyards of the Sonoma Valley. Cultural shock hardly describes what followed.
I was getting a haircut with the barber I had not seen in ten years. Seated in the adjacent barber chair was a psychiatrist who had just opened a new clinic in the area. He interviewed me while we were getting our haircuts. He hired me on the spot. I would be subcontracted to agencies.
It was a jolt when I began visiting schools in small communities. Over the next several years, I was referred to as 'nutcracker', 'mind-reader', 'crystal ball gazer', 'shrink', and 'brain mechanic', to name a few.
Such was my introduction when I brought psychological services to small rural communities during the period of 1950 to 1959. I survived due to the amalgam of my early rural years, thirty months overseas with the military, and a year's internship in the ghetto schools of Chicago. I was convinced a psychologist could influence change. William James had cautioned: 'What such audiences need most is their faiths be broken up and ventilated, then the northwest wind of science should get into them and blow their barbarism away.'
Memories is the personal anecdotal recollections of a rural country psychologist among the farmers and timber people of Northern California in the 1950s.
The author visited homes without curtains, but their pickup trucks had them. He ate out of salad bowls that had Cool Whip printed on the side. He was served food from a buffet table that was also an ironing board.
This is the story of how a young, naïve psychologist gave services to such communities and trusted he edged these communities ahead a few years.
Philosophically, Dr. Trione realized his efforts were those of a Humanist (the application of reason and science to solve human problems).