As a mental health case worker in Seattle, "I have 25 years of people's stories in my head," said Karen Langer, president of the American Mental Health Counselors Association.
"Day-after-day, you're holding everyone else's garbage," she said. "You try to leave it at work but when someone tells you about a horrendous rape, how do you not take it home?"
Langer's first counseling job was helping convicts in work-release programs. She saw 30 clients a week, continuously hearing about drug abuse, alcoholism and crimes.
"Good counselors have to care about clients -- but be in their own space," she said.
A CNNMoney analysis of Census data shows these jobs -- which have roughly the same amount of men and women workers -- have little disparity in salaries.
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