Self-Disclosure Essay

1729 Words Feb 13th, 2007 7 Pages
Therapist Self-Disclosure 1


Therapist Self-Disclosure 2
The effects that counselor self-disclosure can have on group members and the appropriateness of when to use self disclosure will be explained in this paper. The author will discuss the ethical dilemmas that may arise when counselors divulge too much information, as well as a discussion of what the client's perceptions may be of such disclosure and the positive and negative effects that this may have on therapy.

Therapist Self-Disclosure 3
The Pro's and Cons of
Self-Disclosure and Other Boundary Issues In mental health practice, a commonly held view is that therapist self-disclosure
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Such disclosure alleviates the patient's shame and embarrassment, provides positive modeling, normalizes the patient's experience, and provides hope (Wosket 1999). However, when a therapist discloses their experiences to the client fully, then the mystery that the therapist once was to the client decreases, and the person the client once thought the therapist to be changes enormously with some obvious consequences. The client may learn the extent to which the therapist and client are similar and to what extent they differ in thoughts, hopes, and the past. The client may learn of the therapists needs, enabling the client to decide to help or to ensure that the therapists needs not be met. The client learns the extent to which a therapist's morals and ethical standards deviate from their own leaving them vulnerable (Hopps & Pinderhughes 1999). Although burdening the client with the therapists thoughts, expressions and feelings would not be helpful, the therapists should be aware of their own feelings and then decide rather it needs to be expressed or is even appropriate to express (Wosket 1999). Listening is really the key to group facilitating. Listening should not mean simply waiting for a turn to talk or trying to think about what to
Therapist Self-Disclosure 6 say next. Do not jump in to direct the conversation or change the focus from what the group member is saying. Try to figure out

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