What if a client tells you they had sex with their last psychotherapist?

By David Joel Miller, MS, Licensed Therapist & Licensed Counselor.


Photo courtesy of pixabay.

Sex is not the cure – Morning Question #19.

Ethically this is never considered acceptable. If the client was a child we would report this as child sexual abuse. If they were adults they need to report this to the licensing board. In California, we have a nifty little book called “Professional Therapy Never Includes Sex.” We are supposed to keep this book handy and give it to anyone who tells us they had sex with a previous therapist. What they do about the situation is up to them.

One reason sex with patients is not considered acceptable is the trust clients put in their therapist to help them sort out emotions. Getting into a relationship other than the therapeutic one is likely to result in the therapist taking advantage of the client.

What to do about this situation generally is up to the client, not the new therapist. Laws could, of course, be different where you live but second relationships with clients are considered unethical most everywhere.

More on this is here and info on what counseling should be is at Counseling as a novel relationship.

Staying connected with David Joel Miller

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Bumps on the Road of Life. Whether you struggle with anxiety, depression, low motivation, or addiction, you can recover. Bumps on the Road of Life is the story of how people get off track and how to get your life out of the ditch.

Casino Robbery is a novel about a man with PTSD who must cope with his symptoms to solve a mystery and create a new life.

SasquatchWandering through a hole in time, they encounter Sasquatch. Can they survive? The guests had come to Meditation Mountain to find themselves. Trapped in the Menhirs during a sudden desert storm, two guests move through a porthole in time and encounter long extinct monsters. They want to get back to their own time, but the Sasquatch intends to kill them.

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For more about David Joel Miller and my work in the areas of mental health, substance abuse, and Co-occurring disorders see my Facebook author’s page, davidjoelmillerwriter. If you are in the Fresno California area, information about my private practice is at counselorfresno.com.