APA Codes of Ethics: 3.05 Multiple Relationships

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APA Codes of Ethics: 3.05 Multiple Relationships
The relationship between a therapist and their client is a very important. However, too many relationships with a client can be potentially harmful to the client as well as the therapist. American Psychological Association (APA) Codes of Ethics 3.05a deals with how to ethically handle multiple relationships. A dual or a multiple relationship exists whenever a counselor has other connections with a client in addition or in succession to the counselor–client relationship (Moleski & Kiselica, 2005). A multiple relationship occurs when any of the following happens: a psychologist enters into a professional role with a client and (1) and at the same time enters into another role with that client such as friend, sexual partner, or teacher, (2) or enter in a relationship with a person that is related or closely associated with the client, or (3) promises to enter into a relationship in the future with the client or a person closely associated or related to the client.
APA Codes of Ethics 3.05a states that a psychologist refrains from entering into a multiple relationship if the multiple relationships could reasonably be expected to impair the psychologist’s objectivity, competence, or effectiveness in performing his or her functions as a psychologist, or otherwise risks exploitation or harm to the person with whom the professional relationship exists (APA). This ethical code suggests that psychologist should not form multiple relationships with their client if it would hinder the job performance of the psychologist or harm the client. Ethical Code 3.05a improves the profession by helping limit the harm that can be expected when confidential information has been shared be...

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... of contact with their client even if it is to be a friend outside of the session. Sometimes the extra support outside of the session is more beneficial to the client than just in session support. It is important to be open to the roles that are presented to the psychologist as well as to be cautious of these roles.

Works Cited

American Psychological Association.(2010).Ethical principles of psychologists and code of conduct. American Psychologist, 57, p 6.

Dalleasasse, S. L. (2010). Managing nonsexual multiple relationships in university counseling centers: Recommendations for graduate assistants and practicum students. Routledge: Taylor & Francis Group, 1-11. doi: 10.1080/10508422.2010.521440

Moleski, S. M., & Kiselica, M. S. (2005). Dual Relationships: A continuum ranging from the destructive to the therapeutic. Journal of Counseling & Development, 83, 1-11.
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