The patient-therapist relationship becomes a crucible of wellness for many reasons, but the most important may be because it is a kind of living laboratory of all. Your psychologist shouldn't also be your friend, client or sex partner. That's because psychologists are supposed to avoid relationships that could impair their. Why can't you turn the relationship with your therapist into a friendship? of affection between therapist and client cloud the meaning of the relationship.
Apart from all these factors, if a psychologist of therapist makes any statements or actions during the course of therapy suggesting or inviting the possibility of a post-termination sexual or romantic relationship with the patient, that is also deemed unethical according to the Ethics Code of the APA. Psychologists are not only prohibited from engaging in romantic or sexual relationship with a current patient and in most cases former patient but it is also unethical for a psychologist to terminate the therapeutic relationship established with a patient in order to pursue a social or sexual relationship with the patient.
Possible Consequences The Consumer information page of Association of State and Provincial Psychology Boards ASPPB — an alliance of state, provincial, and territorial agencies responsible for the licensure and certification of psychologists throughout the United States and Canada — states that sexual contact of any kind between a psychologist and a patient, and in most cases even a former patient, is unethical and grounds for disciplinary sanctions3.
Additionally, in some jurisdictions, such activity may constitute a criminal offense.
Can Psychologists Date Patients or Former Patients?
All psychologists are trained and educated to know that this kind of behavior is inappropriate and can result in license revocation. Why are such relationships considered unethical? To begin with a sexual involvement makes the work of psychotherapy or analysis impossible.
For this reason, A sexual involvement is unethical because the psychologist can no longer exercise beneficence in the professional relationship. Then again, the psychologist is in a position of power over the patient.
In medico-legal context, the relationship between a psychologist and a patient falls in the ambit of a fiduciary relationship. In a fiduciary relationship, there is an overarching ethical obligation not to derive illegitimate forms of satisfaction that place the patient at risk of harm. Crossing is sometimes advisable. Frequently they attribute more meaning to a relationship than the other person intends.
They mistake friendliness for friendship. The therapeutic relationship can provide practice in sharing a goal without extending the relationship to sharing a life. You are there for and paying for reaching your personal goals, not to make a new friend.
Why Your Therapist Can’t Be Your Friend
For therapy to be effective, the focus needs to be on you. Friendship requires give and take.
Yes, your therapist should be kind, compassionate and understanding. But she should not be using your hour to deal with her own feelings, issues, successes and failures. Your therapy session should only be used to help relieve your symptoms and to help you learn how to manage your life in new ways that are more effective. The only material a therapist has to work with is what you present. If you keep information from your therapist, you limit the amount of help you can get. If you feel like you want more from the relationship, do your best to talk it out, not act it out.Top 4 facts that will change your view on relationships
Positive, even romantic, feelings toward the therapist are normal and expected. But this is material for your work together, not something to act on. If you do act on it in any way, talk about it.
This will keep both you and your therapist safe. The therapeutic relationship is not a friendship. You pay for services. The therapist is doing a job for you for which she or he is paid. Marie Hartwell-Walker is licensed as both a psychologist and marriage and family counselor.
Why Your Therapist Can't Be Your Friend
She specializes in couples and family therapy and parent education. She is author of the insightful parenting e-book, Tending the Family Heart. Check out her book, Unlocking the Secrets of Self-Esteem. Retrieved on December 22,from https: