Saturday, January 9, 2016

Pulling Back That Curtain

     How much should a clinician tell a client about their care? Is it worth it (for the client) to lete them in on some of the behind-the-curtain goings-on of their counseling treatment? This is a difficult question and, like most of my queries, has no straight answer. It depends much on the client and if the clinician has chained himself or herself to an orientation.
     I'm trying to figure out if intelligent - that is, naturally more cognitively gifted - clients would benefit from such action. I can see it a couple of different ways. I can very easily see that opening up to clients can short-circuit the practice. Seeing where the clinician is coming from and revealing our "tricks" for what they are can cheapen the experience. It can make a clinician seem like some kind of scientist, charlatan, or mystic, depending on how they practice and the client's perspective. Taking a client further down the road without explaining the process might push the client further than needed at that moment. Showing the client the process, on the other hand, might also help them further along.
     Some theories, like CBT, to a certain degree, are less mystified and more operationalized. For a very intelligent client, the steps can be learned (and, in that theory, they are even taught). So, in this this theory, such a practice of foresight and explanation is good. But in general . . . are there positive? There could be! A client could be self-healing. We all dream of (or fear) that client that can help themselves. I would say that such a "clinical intervention" is less rote technique and more psychoeduction (which is less taxing on the clinician and also less satisfying to me, for some reason).
     I must say . . . rolling back the curtain could lead to two negative business practices. First, the client could go nowhere in therapy and quite; they could also drum up bad reviews. The other negative side - and I find this to be morally, ethically, and personally reprehensible - is that increasing the speed of a client's recovery decreases the business from that client. I don't like thinking that way, but, alas, I did. May Science have mercy on my soul. I will say, though, that increased client recovery can lead to better reviews and better business down the line.

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