My self was already preoccupied with the fears and stereotypes about Kashmir, hence i was concentrating on more about the negative aspects of the place, people and their actions.
I stayed with the three floor house of the chairman of the institute. When we arrived in his house and after eating food, he “segregated” [that was I thought at that time] us in the basis of gender. He gave a room to the lady co trainee and gave guest hall to us. I even mentioned this gender discrimination to the co-trainee. Later when I thought about it, I could understand that he had good intention.

Another incident was about the food given to us. They gave us rice and some kind of cabbage leaves curry for three meals every day and hey didn't ask us whether we liked it or not. I learned to like the curry later but at that time the thought of “insensitivity” was there. They are giving homemade food for us without even taking a single penny and as a trainee I shouldn't have thought of complaining about it. They were serving food very carefully without spilling a tiny bit and I felt too much respect with the way they serve food.

One day when we went to eat, the wife of the chairman, threw a chappathi to my plate and I couldn't catch it and it fell on the cleanly kept cloth in the floor. I took it from the floor and ate it. Then I commented about this to my co trainee, “look at how they treat food, I thought they respected food”. He felt angry and we had a fight over this.

At that time I mentioned it as a mere comment with funny tone in it. But when I analyzed it later, I could understand, I was very keen to pick up of negative aspects of others. As a social worker, I should not look for negative aspects and try to blame people for what I think as misdeeds. I have to use that aspect of my personality in a positive manner.

ALSO READ: Process of Decision Making to Go to Jammu and Kashmir- The Heaven on Earth

In the period of the placement, I was upset and felt offended several times with the co workers. But I tried to adjust as much as possible with them even though we had two or three fights. This putting priority about others made me more frustrated as I could not accept what I was doing.

I was even adjusting with them, even if the faults were theirs and I was unable to express my anger. A feeling of utter disgust about my own decisions and over adjusting was all over and I needed to burst it out. I wanted to stop this work and come fast to my comfort zone. But this learned adjustment kept me going to finish the placement and I was too happy to reach back to my home.

Expression of Self

I think expressing one’s own self is essential in life and work. This placement made me understand that a social worker may have to adjust with the work environment even it is not sufficient enough for self-expression.  But working through it and reaching the ultimate goal need real courage. I believe I have very large room for improvement and I will try to change and modify as I evolve into mature social work professional.

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