When I was in the fourth year in the colledge, my uncle asked me about which speciality in medecine I like. When I answered : PSYCHIATRY, my uncle's face turned into yellow and he took a long time of silence as if something dangerous or wrong has happened. Then he told me that no one will visit me to my clinic if I will be a psychiatrsit. That was not strange especially if you know how people in Iraq look to this speciality.
I remember one of the best doctors whome I was working under his supervision, I liked him very much, and respect his point of view . When he knew about my decision to be a resident doctor in psychiatry he was surprised and told me : but Sami listen, what you gonna do for crazy people? they do not need you.... they got the street open to them to run in it....no one will come to your clinic!
A friend of mine who also chosed psychiatry as a career told me about the minute his father knew about his choice of studying psychiatry, his father told him: if you chose this branch of specialization, I will no more be your father!
And that obliged my friend to postpone his studies for one year so that he will not lose the love of his father, and fortunately during that year he succeeded to change his father's point of view. In Iraq it is considered very bad to make your parents discontent about you.
As you see from the above story, in Iraq , the picture of psychiatry is still not clear to peolple and many think that the psychiatrists themselves got some kind of mental illness.