tween therapist and client in having a sexual relationship, even though the law required a Ph.D. for that title and the therapist did not have a Ph.D. Aubrey. I am horrified that so many television shows and movies depict romantic relationships between therapists and clients as though they were. Couple's therapy attempts to improve romantic relationships and resolve interpersonal conflicts. .. Couple therapy may include helping the clients feel more comfortable and accepting of same-sex feelings and to explore ways of incorporating (link) CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link); ^ Resnikoff R ().
For me, dual relationships are one, largely avoidable area where harm could foreseeably occur. This is particularly true in relationships where there is a shift from the relationship serving the emotional needs of the client only, to emotional needs of both parties being met within the relationship.
A major benefit of therapy is that the client need not worry about having to hold the emotional energy of the therapist. As soon as the relationship requires two-way emotional holding of the other, there is a shift in the dynamics which is unlikely to meet with the expectations of either party.The Therapeutic Relationship as the Vehicle for Transformation and Change
When this gap between expectation and reality presents itself, there is great potential for hurt to occur, and potentially for this to taint any positive outcomes achieved in therapy. I find the idea of therapists forming sexual relationships with clients or former clients particularly troubling. Where an additional business relationship occurs, it is equally important to consider the potential harm to the therapeutic alliance and therefore to the client.
Is such a relationship completely necessary? I would think very rarely, and if there is another option, in my view it should always be perused before a dual relationship is arranged.
If a dual relationship is unavoidable, like anything, it needs to be discussed carefully with the client to manage boundaries and reduce the risk of harm. Relationship influences are reciprocal: A viable solution to the problem and setting these relationships back on track may be to reorient the individuals' perceptions and emotions - how one looks at or responds to situations and feels about them.
Perceptions of and emotional responses to a relationship are contained within an often unexamined mental map of the relationship, also called a love map by John Gottman. These can be explored collaboratively and discussed openly. The core values they comprise can then be understood and respected or changed when no longer appropriate. This implies that each person takes equal responsibility for awareness of the problem as it arises, awareness of their own contribution to the problem and making some fundamental changes in thought and feeling.
Dual Relationships, During and After Therapy
The next step is to adopt conscious, structural changes to the inter-personal relationships and evaluate the effectiveness of those changes over time. Indeed, "typically for those close personal relations there is a certain degree in 'interdependence' - which means that the partners are alternately mutually dependent on each other. As a special aspect of such relations something contradictory is put outside: But it depends on the specific developing duties of each partner in every life phase and maturity".
Each helps couples learn a method of communicating designed to create a safe environment for each partner to express and hear feelings. When the Munich Marital Study discovered active listening to not be used in the long run,  Warren Farrell observed that active listening did a better job creating a safe environment for the criticizer to criticize than for the listener to hear the criticism.
The listener, often feeling overwhelmed by the criticism, tended to avoid future encounters. He hypothesized that we were biologically programmed to respond defensively to criticism, and therefore the listener needed to be trained in-depth with mental exercises and methods to interpret as love what might otherwise feel abusive.
His method is Cinematic Immersion. After 30 years of research into marriage John Gottman has found that healthy couples almost never listen and echo each other's feelings naturally. What's more, Gottman noted, data from a Munich study demonstrated that the reflective listening exercise itself didn't help couples to improve their marriages.
Couples therapy - Wikipedia
To teach such interactions, whether as a daily tool for couples or as a therapeutic exercise in empathy, was a clinical dead end. Emotions bring the past alive in rigid interaction patterns, which create and reflect absorbing emotional states. As one of its founders Sue Johnson says, Forget about learning how to argue better, analysing your early childhood, making grand romantic gestures, or experimenting with new sexual positions.
Instead, recognize and admit that you are emotionally attached to and dependent on your partner in much the same way that a child is on a parent for nurturing, soothing, and protection.
The basic principles for a counselor include: Provide a confidential dialoguewhich normalizes feelings To enable each person to be heard and to hear themselves Provide a mirror with expertise to reflect the relationship's difficulties and the potential and direction for change Empower the relationship to take control of its own destiny and make vital decisions Deliver relevant and appropriate information Changes the view of the relationship Improve communication Set clear goals and objectives As well as the above, the basic principles for a couples therapist also include: To identify the repetitive, negative interaction cycle as a pattern.