I'm a social worker and the majority of my close friends are social workers or therapists (with social work degrees). I've worked in child welfare, adoption, and with families who have children with special needs. The part of the job I've always loved was working with families in their homes or environments on their goals. Seeing them achieve even seemingly small goals has been really rewarding to me. I really would not suggest a social work career to anyone though. Unless you get your Master's degree and then 3000 supervised hours, etc. to become a therapist, the pay is really low. To put things in perspective, I saw my supervisor's pay stub a few years ago, and having had 15 years of experience, an MSW, and working 50-60 hours/week, she was making 38K. Of my friends with BSWs and MSWs whose salaries I'm familiar with, the majority are making in the 25k to 45k range. 45 would be at the way high end. My friends working in hospitals and schools are making more than friends working in child welfare and mental health, but they all have MSWs. The pay is just not there considering the schooling and considering the stress, long hours, etc. I have not found being a social worker (in child welfare at least) to be really conducive to having a family. I've done some contract work since my son was born, but I now have a sense of fear that I didn't have when I wasn't a mom. Obviously some of the families I've worked with have been very angry with me for various reasons. I've worked with parents and children who have histories of being extremely violent. This just hasn't sat that well with me since becoming a parent. Granted, that is just one area of social work, and there are other "safer" choices. PTs, OTs, and SLPs tend to make quite a bit more than social workers, aren't "on call" to the extent most social workers are, etc. You have to have the ability to face difficult, sickening, sad situations all day long, and then go home and somehow turn it all off. The first year or so really threw me because it can be difficult to leave work at work....not think about the tough situations people are in, etc. I wouldn't change having chosen social work as a career, because I really have a passion for it, but it isn't a super easy or financially rewarding career, and it can be super stressful.