(Closed) Bees in helping/therapy professions – especially with lower income folks…

posted 9 years ago in Rings
Post # 17
Member
9048 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2010

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@j_jaye:  which if you read my reply is what I said in the first place… that it never occurred to me not to wear it, besides when I’m touching people that are covered in blood.

Post # 18
Member
2898 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

I’m a public defender, and I’ve noticed that clients often look at my ring while I’m interviewing them. I think it’s a combination of the jewelry-store-esque lighting in the interview booths, which makes my ring ridiculously sparkly, and the fact that I tend to prop my head in my left hand while I wrote with my right hand. I don’t think it’s a barrier to forming a good lawyer-client relationship, though… If anything, I hope they assume that I’ve got some bank because I’m such an awesome lawyer. 🙂 

Post # 19
Member
1367 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

j_jaye Whoaaaa first of all, that’s rather rude of you to mock someone’s economic reality like that! FYI I do not own even own a car and I still manage to get myself to work, and guess what, I do wear thrift store clothes. What is wrong with that? Talk about making assumptions and being judgemental!

Personally, I definitely would find it distasteful if someone drove their luxury car, wore a large blinged-out ring, etc. to volunteer or work with the underprivileged. That’s just my opinion, but I don’t see how it doesn’t create a barrier.

It doesn’t have to be your “main” concern, but spare a thought to it! All of your consumer choices do send a message, and I do think they can be alienating. Because guess what, buying cars and clothes and a diamond ring is an action. It communicates your opinions and values.

Post # 20
Member
411 posts
Helper bee

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@j_jaye:  what you wear can absolutely create a barrier (although i don’t think an engagement ring would). would i wear the tailored suit i wear to client presentations while handing out sandwiches on the dt eastside, or delivering gifts and food to an adopted family for christmas? absolutely not – it makes me look unapproachable, and either intimidating or like i think i’m superior (or an idiot). i might not check the brand name on my jeans when i volunteer, but i definitely dress down. and especially since the op said she’s in a therapy-type position (vs lawyer where intimidating is a good thing) – you want them to trust you, and nothing builds trust like building rapport and highlighting commonalities over differences. it takes mere minutes to intuitively conclude whether you like someone, and a lot of that is subconscious. is dressing “appropriately” the only thing that matters? no. and it’s absolutely not the most important thing. but it definitely helps.

Post # 22
Member
225 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2014

Yeah it kind of just matters to what population that you work with, my kids think its cool that I am engaged, and they like to know somewhat personal things about you, and it helps create relationships with them.  I do things and wear things in order to build the relationships with them, I have pretty nails (I keep them pretty short) but the teenage girls love them, and I have small gauge earrings that they think are cool, and I wear similar clothing to them because they feel like they can trust me and get along with me. 

I am also getting my masters degree in social work.  EVERYTHING you do (your actions, what you look like, your tone of voice, etc.) has an affect on your clients.  Obviously everyone judges people, look at how people on this board are judging eachother just by what they are typing…

Post # 24
Member
225 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2014

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@BartenderPlease:  Haha yes! The girls love the accessories haha, my nails are always really glittery and even new clients want to see them and talk to me.. I don’t have to find a way to make a connection with them, because they approach me first.  Its a win-win! haha

and to bring the convo back around, I feel like my nails are flashier than my ring is haha

Post # 25
Member
204 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2017

I do! I’m a victim advocate and young compared to others in my office. I’m 24 and the 2nd youngest is 30 then the rest are all 45 and up. So i feel victims take me a little more seriously based on the fact I’m obviously in a committed relationship and I dress very professionally. Our area is not overwhelmingly low income but there is quite a bit. My jewelry (which is not overly expensive looking) does not seem to make much difference.

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