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Fri Jun 10, 2016, 08:41 PM

Therapy question.......

Last edited Sat Jun 11, 2016, 03:19 PM - Edit history (1)

I drive a psychologist to work. She's attending a conference today & tomorrow, so we've had a chance to talk. She had a question she couldn't quite get answered today. I told her I would ask here.

My passenger understands the need to not be in a relationship with her patients and has never done so. She has a patient who she has been seeing for quite some time. That patient is getting married, both she (patient) and her fiancÚ want my passenger to attend the wedding, but not have the patient end her therapeutic relationship. She has told them no, but the fiancÚ has stated "if it wasn't for you, we wouldn't be marrying".

What do you think?

18 replies, 1254 views

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Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 18 replies Author Time Post
Reply Therapy question....... (Original post)
mrmpa Jun 2016 OP
MADem Jun 2016 #1
rurallib Jun 2016 #2
elleng Jun 2016 #3
TexasBushwhacker Jun 2016 #16
nolabear Jun 2016 #4
UTUSN Jun 2016 #5
Chan790 Jun 2016 #6
DawgHouse Jun 2016 #7
mrmpa Jun 2016 #8
hibbing Jun 2016 #9
Lars39 Jun 2016 #10
Generic Brad Jun 2016 #11
Fla Dem Jun 2016 #12
oberliner Jun 2016 #13
kairos12 Jun 2016 #14
WiffenPoof Jun 2016 #15
Skittles Jun 2016 #17
mnhtnbb Jun 2016 #18

Response to mrmpa (Original post)

Fri Jun 10, 2016, 09:23 PM

1. Wish them well, do NOT attend the wedding.

There are lines that should not be crossed--that's one of 'em.

The patient should understand this, and not let the whole transference thing take hold. The therapist should stick to her guns and not attend.

If it hadn't been that therapist, it would have been another one. The happy couple can celebrate just fine on their own--they don't need the therapist blessing every moment.

If it's too awkward and the patient won't say no, the therapist should lie and say they have a valid reason for not attending (another wedding, or an anniversary party of a relative, or a doctor's appointment--whatever). But if the patient is really that much of a noodge, maybe they shouldn't be getting married just yet!

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Response to mrmpa (Original post)

Fri Jun 10, 2016, 09:24 PM

2. that is a good question

OK - real answer - I would say stay away

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Response to mrmpa (Original post)

Fri Jun 10, 2016, 09:24 PM

3. I think your passenger should feel free to attend,

not a 'romantic' relationship, just social, but I'm not familiar with the professional ethics issues for psychologists.

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Response to elleng (Reply #3)

Mon Jun 13, 2016, 12:14 AM

16. I agree n/t

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Response to mrmpa (Original post)

Fri Jun 10, 2016, 10:30 PM

4. Most of us wouldn't attend, but would appreciate being asked.

It's really hard to explain who you are...or not to. And it's not too hard to show how happy you are for someone while kindly saying no.

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Response to mrmpa (Original post)

Fri Jun 10, 2016, 10:41 PM

5. No. The relationships is professional/ not personal. nt/

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Response to mrmpa (Original post)

Fri Jun 10, 2016, 11:16 PM

6. I'm going to answer this from the other side...

 

I'd end a theraputic relationship with anybody who was so hands off that they would not attend my wedding. How she feels is valid, but it's not the only valid perspective...and it may be worthwhile to go, just to avoid the conflict disrupting the theraputic relationship.

I mean, she could go to the wedding but not the reception and if anybody asks who she is, just say she's a friend of the bride's from around town.

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Response to mrmpa (Original post)

Fri Jun 10, 2016, 11:24 PM

7. I think she should not attend.

It seems that it would be a supportive thing to do but it crosses a professional boundary. They are not friends, her patient is a client. I think it's a bad idea to blur the line between friend and therapist.

http://kspope.com/ethics/boundary.php

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Response to mrmpa (Original post)

Sat Jun 11, 2016, 12:04 AM

8. I will advise her of these...........

replies in the morning.

Thanks to all!!

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Response to mrmpa (Original post)

Sat Jun 11, 2016, 12:14 AM

9. Not attend

I'm not involved in the profession at all, but I would say not go.

Peace

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Response to mrmpa (Original post)

Sat Jun 11, 2016, 08:58 AM

10. She runs the risk of looking like she's angling

for more 'business' if she attends and is introduced as the bride's therapist and given credit as described in OP. Kinda puts the spotlight on her instead of the happy couple too.
Weddings are emotional events so there is a fairly good chance she would be introduced this way.

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Response to mrmpa (Original post)

Sat Jun 11, 2016, 10:09 AM

11. It crosses a line

Twice in 20+ years I have attended milestone gatherings for employees of mine - not patients, mind you, but employees. Both times the professional relationship eventually went off the rails. Skip weddings, house warmings, watching the big game, dining together, etc. Not a good idea if the professional relationship is going to continue.

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Response to mrmpa (Original post)

Sat Jun 11, 2016, 11:02 AM

12. Agree with the majority of the responses here. She should not attend.

Certainly let her patient know she is appreciative for the gratitude of her patient. But she needs to lead her life without her therapist being a part of her personal relationships. How could a therapist go to a function and meet all those people in her patients life that have been discussed over the years. Very awkward and may taint the therapist's perspective in future sessions.

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Response to mrmpa (Original post)

Sat Jun 11, 2016, 11:14 AM

13. Do not under any circumstance attend that wedding

 

Would be my advice.

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Response to mrmpa (Original post)

Sat Jun 11, 2016, 12:51 PM

14. It is not appropriate for her to attend.

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Response to mrmpa (Original post)

Sat Jun 11, 2016, 12:54 PM

15. Do not attend...nt

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Response to mrmpa (Original post)

Mon Jun 13, 2016, 12:35 AM

17. she must send her best wishes and decline the invitation

it surprises me she even needs to ask

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Response to mrmpa (Original post)

Mon Jun 13, 2016, 07:23 PM

18. My husband is a psychiatrist/psychoanalyst of 40 some years in practice.

We've been married 31 years.

Over the course of that time he's been invited to several weddings of patients/former patients. We attended one together--but the therapeutic relationship
had been terminated--and we only went to the ceremony, not the reception.

Once he attended a wedding on his own--I refused to go--and stayed for part of the reception. I was too uncomfortable with it
because I didn't want to be asked "how do you know the couple".

He declined attending another wedding because we were going out of town.

Personally, I think it's professionally inappropriate for her to go as long as the professional relationship hasn't been terminated.

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