My longest stint as a care worker has been as a prostitute, but nearly every job I’ve ever held has involved what Arlie Russell Hochschild termed “emotional labor.” No one who’s known me as an escort, a nanny, or a waitress is surprised to see me going to nursing school; emotional labor gives the most back to me, despite whatever complications it brings up…
Emotional labor, like all work, takes its own peculiar tolls. In the world of commodified caring, the greatest risk to professional longevity is burnout, the stultifying feeling of not being able to keep up with the emotional demands of the job.
Story length: 3,804 words
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