View Full Version : therapist- client relationship
03-24-2004, 12:52 AM
Assuming a patient and a client wanted to begin a romantic relationship, how long must they wait once the professional relationship is over? :confused:
03-24-2004, 01:04 AM
It is a bad idea and unethical to end therapy in order to start a sexual relationship. The therapist has had a position of power which remains even after therapy is ended; you will never be an equal in this kind of relationship.
It would be unethical ever. The therapist must leave the door open to the possibility of the patient's return to therapy.
Consider also that the patient and therapist have a relationship for a while and then the therapist wants to end it. The patient internally will almost always see this as rejection not only by a lover, but also by the therapist. That can be very, very damaging.
It is common for the patient, especially, to be a little bit in love with the therapist. And probably sometimes the reverse is true. But I just can't imagine a good therapist acting upon those feelings or allowing the patient to. I think that to do so can probably get the therapist professionally busted.
03-24-2004, 02:18 AM
Each state may have their own rules for their Licensed Professional Counselors. In Texas, it is not allowed:
Texas Administrative Code
SUBCHAPTER C, CODE OF ETHICS
§681.33 Sexual Misconduct
(b) A licensee shall not engage in sexual contact with a person who is:
(1) a client or former client;
(2) an LPC intern supervised by the licensee; or
(3) a student at an educational institution at which the licensee provides professional or educational services.
Although ethically wrong, there may be a loophole so that the LPC can avoid getting disciplined:
(e) It is a defense to a disciplinary action under subsections (b)-(d) of this section, if the person was no longer emotionally dependent on the licensee when the sexual exploitation began, the sexual contact occurred, or the therapeutic deception occurred, and the licensee terminated counseling with the person more than two years before the date the sexual exploitation began, the sexual contact occurred, or the therapeutic deception occurred.
Here is the link if you want to investigate further- remember, this just applies to Texas: http://www.tdh.state.tx.us/hcqs/plc/lpc/lpc_ethics.pdf
03-24-2004, 03:10 AM
Question: A legitimate, licensed therapist would almost certainly know the answer to the original question. Is the poster a client interested in his/her therapist? What is the therapist saying about the idea?
03-24-2004, 06:34 AM
Or the poster could be writing a novel. Or the poster could be curious about something they've read. Or the poster could know someone who is in love with their therapist. There's no reason to think this is anything more than a hypothetical situation.
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