Not easy being blue: Fatal shootings, job stress make it hard to be a cop

Source: Ryan Wagoner, The Conversation, August 15, 2016

…How does this looming worry affect the mental health of police officers, and how might that change with some of the recent events portrayed in the media?

These are important questions to examine, even though they may not be easy to answer. One concern is officers’ well-being in the face of stress. Another concern is the effect of their stress on the well-being of others.

As a psychiatrist who studies stressors on police and other professions, I will share insights from research and offer some analysis of my own. While police historically have been shown to be a resilient group, the targeting of them for intentional killing could affect this resilience.

Also, you might be surprised to learn that a big stressor for police officers is the same as it is for the rest of us. They don’t like disagreeable tasks such as paperwork. Job dissatisfaction and conflict among coworkers are also stressors….