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Thread: Hypervigilance

  1. #21
    tapout's Avatar
    tapout is offline keepin it gangsta'
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    i should tell my wife about this theory, maybe shell understand why i dont feel like re staining the deck...

  2. #22
    Sleuth is offline SS/A (Ret.)
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    It's not about giving of themselves. It's more of self identity. I never defined myself solely as an officer. I am a husband, horse owner/rider, gun collector, shooter, writer, firefighter, grant writer, etc. etc. I/we had a plan for post retirement. I have not set foot in any office of my agency since the day I retired. That was then, this is NOW.
    Survival is the only Victory!

  3. #23
    Magnum440 is offline Older Than Dirt
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    After retirement, I have not been back to my headquarters one time. I do keep in touch with other retired guys I worked with. Did I absolutely love my LEO job? Better believe it. Never discussed things with my wife, and she, wisely, never asked. Never carried an off duty weapon, and stayed away from my beat while not working. When I left headquarters, I was no longer a police officer although department policy was 24/7 which is crap. Easiest way in the world to get hurt. Never socialized with other LEOs on my platoon, family to family. Might go have a beer with them after duty hours. Off duty hours consisted of working on the farm, camping with family, hunting, and having family over.
    As to hypervigilance, sorry guys/gals, some of the stuff never leaves you. When I go in a public place I always look for the loud mouth in the bunch, and try to position myself where we are face to face, and the whole crowd, as much as possible, can be seen. Can still spot a DUI as quickly now as during my active days. Observation skills just don't dry up when retirement comes. Skepticism remains.

    Stay safe, have fun, and enjoy retirement when it comes.
    Facta non verba
    "The good Lord set definite limits on man's wisdom, but set no limits on his stupidity and that's not fair!" Konrad Adenauer,

  4. #24
    Jks9199 is offline The Reason People Hate Cops & Causer of War
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    Quote Originally Posted by kimby
    I've been reading Emotional Survival for Law Enforcement and have been getting a whole new perspective. If I'm understanding correctly, officers can have problems in their personal lives because the extremely exciting hypervigilant state they experience while they're at work affects the rest of their lives.

    Apparently you guys can go from a state of very high autonomic arousal at work to an almost catatonic condition when you're off duty, and that can make you think of your time off as a low point in your lives. It sounds like when officers are off-duty all they want to do is recover and they have little energy or motivation left to take care of their personal lives. I can definitely see how that would cause social and relationship problems.

    I was wondering what everyone's thoughts are on this. Is there a ring of truth to it, or is it a lot of psychological mumbo-jumbo?
    Dr. Gilmarten knows what he's talking about. He's been there/done that.

    It's very easy for us to go home, plop ourselves in front of the tube (even though it's becoming a computer as often or more often than a tv), and turn our mind off. It's really easy for us, off duty, to let stuff slide and ignore stuff and just sometimes literally get walked over because we're unengaged off the clock.

    It's ESSENTIAL that a cop learn a solid balance if he's going to survive emotionally.
    Last edited by Jks9199; 05-06-06 at 08:30 AM.

  5. #25
    1*girl Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by kimby
    Oh yes, now I remember you saying something about that earlier. Maybe that's what gave me the idea.

    It sounds like officers need more preparation even before they start the job, in order to avoid problems at retirement. But I guess rookies aren't going to be very receptive when they're told not to give too much of themselves to the job.
    I agree, but do have to say I'll be one rookie that's willing to listen to that advice (and use it). My father has been an officer for almost 30 years and is nearing retirement. He's a prime example of those that define themselves as solely a "cop". We really have no relationship and it's not due to the job, but due to him. I guess you could say I have firsthand experience from the sidelines when it comes to leaving the job at work (which I know is extremely hard, but it's not impossible). I'm not sure if he refuses to believe he's this way, or if he just doesn't realize it, but out of all the great advice he gives me about LE, I hear a lot of the "your family won't understand and will resent you for it", and about the high divorce rates, and all the negative things about life away from the beat. Personally, I'm all for keeping my "normal" friends and family around for as long as possible and won't mind any training or what have you on how to do that!

  6. #26
    Sleuth is offline SS/A (Ret.)
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    It's a choice, and you get to make it. All my friends are shooters, but few are officers. We tend to agree on social issues, but there are bankers, a lawyer (yes, a lawyer), truck drivers, ditch diggers, postmen, cowboys, a wide range of people we call friend.
    The other element of hypervigalence Dr. Gilmarten talks about is the emotional high on the job, and the actions some cops take off duty because they are addicted to the high. They are the 'action junkies'.
    Survival is the only Victory!

 

 
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