How psychotherapists address hypothetical multiple relationships dilemmas with asian american clients: A national survey
David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Ethics and Behavior 17 (2):137 – 162 (2007)
This study examined how psychotherapists address hypothetical nonsexual multiple relationships dilemmas with Asian American clients and identified predictors of conservative decisions and the use of culture-based rationales. This survey of 787 Asian American and non-Asian American psychotherapists revealed that clinicians rely on mostly their personal policies and seldom focus on the clients' cultural backgrounds. Psychotherapists who consider their clients' Asian culture have more cultural knowledge and awareness, have been mental health providers longer, and are Asian American and female. Clinicians who avoid multiple relationships tend to cite formal policies as justification and are less likely to consider clients' cultural worldviews, the therapeutic relationship, or their own values. The results are discussed in terms of specific revisions needed in the American Psychological Association Ethics Code, the benefits of more frequent consultation with colleagues and supervisors about ethical dilemmas, and recommendations for psychotherapists.
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