5 Reasons Why Being a Lawyer is Really Not as Cool as I Thought

M Walter Bitter by Numbers, Lawyer 3 Comments

1 Being a public defender is not as noble as you thought. So, you are going to be a public defender, eh? You are going to help the down and out? Your clients will come to your office, you will serve them coffee and you will rationally and logically explain to them their legal options. They will decide which path they want to take and you will represent them. They will shake your hand and thank you for helping them. LOL, you silly.

First off, your client will almost certainly never ever tell you the truth. So, this idea that they will communicate important facts to you is just pure fantasy. Secondly, your client is on drugs. So, instead of having a rational and calm discussion about the case, your client will scream and threaten you and then ask you for a hug. All in the same day. And of course when they threaten you and call you various colorful names, you can’t say “fuck you” and never talk to them again like you would with almost any other human being in the world. Instead, you will have to go home and work on their case, so you can represent them to the best of your abilities. Then you will come to work the next day and start the cycle of hugs and threats all over again.

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  • NurRauch

    Being a public defender is hard. Who knew?? Keep your chin up, author. The thanklessness of the job is part of the REASON it’s such a noble profession. Not just anybody can go to work and get spit on by the judge and the prosecutor and even their own clients every day and decide to get up in the morning and do it all over again tomorrow.

  • C.D.G

    A few issues with the article.

    1. First of all, being a Public Defender is every bit as noble as you thought. Perhaps you thought you would be representing nothing but innocent clients. Or maybe you thought that just because your client actually did what they are accused of, the case should resolve with a plea. The reality is that it is a hard and thankless job. But every time you defend the rights of a guilty client, you are protecting the rights of every person in the country of having their rights stripped away. Yes, you are often representing the dregs of society, but if they feel you are actually fighting for them, you will get a positive response.

    2. Suits don’t look good? Thats because it isn’t fitting right. I see lots of young attorneys that look like they borrowed their fathers suit. The neck is too loose, the tie is barely snugged or tied incorrectly. You don’t have to spend $1000 on a suit to look good. Just but one that fits. Suck it up and stop buying your shirts too big. Ill have you know I look good in my suits and can wear a bow tie without looking the least bit ironic or hipster.

    3. I agree with you here.

    4. I disagree with every fiber of my soul. Competition for seats at reputable law schools (I refuse to address the degree mill schools) is around 250 to 1. That means for every student admitted, 249 don’t make the cut. Out of the admitted students, a hefty number will wash out and only about half to three quarters that graduate will pass a bar exam. Of those, while they can all call themselves practicing attorneys, only a very few have the stamina, talent and ability to be successful trial attorneys. The law changes almost daily and requires constant education and updating to keep up. A good litigator will often be responsible for making the changes in the law. It is not a static, technical profession but a fluid dynamic one. While I know brain surgery is very difficult and requires alot of education, it is for the most part a technicians job. New procedures and a better understanding over time certainly has its place in the evolving practice of medicine, but the actual human body doesn’t change very much over the course of a career. The law does.

    5. Being right doesn’t mean you will win. Never does. But being right means never giving up the fight. If you lose and give up, you should never have been practicing in the first place.

  • PK

    The article states the opinion of the author and probably what he/she went through. I personally have been through the same situations probably more than a couple of times. At the end of the day, overcoming or making these situations improve is what counts. There’s no perfect job out there. It’s just whether you enjoy and want to continue your job or change jobs. If you’ve found a job that suits you, you will have less issues with it and less complaints about it.