Ethics in Action

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Ethics in Action III-Module 6

Anthony Hall
April 25, 2011
COUN 501-D17 LUO

Module Six Questions
Segment One: Managing Boundaries
1. If this was your client, what would you say and do? Be specific. Why would you respond that way? If this was my client I would start of by restating her request. I would do this to make sure I had a clear understanding of her request to conduct group outside and away from the confines of the office. I would question her about how long she has been feeling like she would like to conduct our sessions outside of the office. I would ask her how holding group outside the office would benefit her or impact her treatment. I would let the client know that from my perspective, I would like to maintain a level of professionalism with her sessions and that remaining in the office would ensure that professionalism. I would talk to her about confidentiality and my desire to protect her confidentiality. Holding a session at the park would not guarantee her confidentiality; if she ran into someone she knew she might feel uncomfortable. Although I would not want to have a session in the park or have a picnic, as the client suggested, would explore the possibility to having a session outside; at my current office we have a courtyard on the premises of the agency. I think agreeing to hold a few sessions in the courtyard would demonstrate my willingness to meet the client halfway. 2. What do the ACA and AACC Code of Ethics say regarding managing boundaries? What is your response to this? Section C.2.a of the American Counseling Association (2005) (ACA, p.9) code of ethics states, “Counselors practice only within the boundaries of their competence, based on their education, training, supervised experience, state and national professional credentials, and appropriate professional experience. Counselors gain knowledge, personal awareness, sensitivity, and skills pertinent to working with a diverse client population.” Section I-210 of The American Association of Christian Counselors (2004) (AACC, p. 9) code of ethics in 1-210 states, “Christian counselors maintain the highest standards of competence with integrity. We know and respect the boundaries of competence in ourselves and others, especially those under our supervision. We make only truthful, realistic statements about our identity, education, experience, credentials, and about counseling goals and process, avoiding exaggerated and sensational claims. We do not offer services or work beyond the limits of our competence and do not aid or abet the work of Christian counseling by untrained, unqualified, or unethical helpers”. In response to the ACA (2005) and AACC (2004), counselors must know the code of ethics in under which they are operating. They must also practice the principles of their code of ethics. Additionally, counselors must establish and exercise proper boundaries; failure to do so causes harm to the client and the counselor.

Segment Two: The Friendship
1. If this was your client, what would you say and do? Be specific. Why would you respond that way? First of all would acknowledge the clients statement in which she stated, “I would like to continue our friendship”. I would explain to her that our time together in session should not be regarded as a friendship. I would explain to her that our relationship as counselor/counselee has been a professional relationship and should be regarded as such. I would describe the definition of a therapeutic relationship and a social relationship. I would explain that as her counselor, it would not be appropriate for us to develop a relationship outside of our professional relationship. I would talk to her about my code of ethics and explain a dual relationship. I would also talk to her about the potential risks of us forging a “friendship”. I would pose the following questions: Knowing all of the nature of the information you have divulged during your sessions, how...
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