Confidentiality is a fundamental tenet of the therapeutic relationship. It allows both parties to openly discuss their thoughts and feelings without fear. It assures what they cannot reveal anything outside of the therapy room. As therapists, we should keep our clients’ private information private. However, a therapist can break confidentiality if there are some extenuating circumstances. In this blog post, I am going to explain how therapist-client confidentiality works!
- 1 What Is Therapist Client Confidentiality?
- 2 Importance of Therapist Client Confidentiality
- 3 Rules of Therapist Client Confidentiality
- 4 Benefits of Therapist Client Confidentiality
- 5 Reasons For Breaking Therapist Client Confidentiality
- 6 How Therapist-Client Confidentiality Affects You?
- 7 Precautions To Protect Therapist Client Confidentiality
- 8 Conclusion
- 9 A Word From Mantra Care
What Is Therapist Client Confidentiality?
Therapist client confidentiality means that your therapist cannot share any information about you with anyone else without first receiving authorization from you. This includes parents, significant others, law enforcement officials, or other therapists outside of the treatment relationship.
Furthermore, This confidentiality is to protect you from those who would want access to the information.
This type of confidentiality is one of a therapist’s first priorities and they do everything in their power to ensure that your information does not get into the wrong hands. It can be devastating for other people, even ones you love or trust if they hear about things going on inside the session without being able to benefit from it as well because this confidentiality protects everyone involved except yourself.
Importance of Therapist Client Confidentiality
You cannot overstate the importance of therapist-client confidentiality cannot. However, it is one of the most important aspects of the therapeutic relationship and allows for an open and safe space in which to explore difficult issues. If you are not comfortable with sharing information about yourself with your therapist, it is likely that therapy will not be effective.
Make sure to discuss any concerns you have about confidentiality with your therapist so that you can make an informed decision about whether or not to seek treatment.
Rules of Therapist Client Confidentiality
There are some rules that your therapist should follow when it comes to confidentiality. If they ever break these rules, this is a sign that the relationship has broken down and you may want to seek out another therapist or health care professional.
Rule No. 1: Your therapist cannot share anything you say outside of the treatment room. This means that your therapist will not discuss details about you with their spouse, friends, family members, or other therapists.
Rule No. 2: If law enforcement officials come to them requesting information on a specific individual without first getting authorization from that person, your therapist can refuse to provide any information and contact appropriate legal authorities if necessary.
Rule No.3: If your therapist is subpoenaed to testify in a court case, they can only share information that has been previously discussed with you and they cannot reveal any new or confidential information.
Rule No.4: If you decide to terminate the therapeutic relationship, your therapist is still obligated to keep all information about you confidential. They cannot discuss anything that happened during sessions with anyone without your authorization.
Benefits of Therapist Client Confidentiality
These are some of the major benefits of therapist-client confidentiality.
This is the most obvious benefit of therapist-client confidentiality. It ensures that you are able to share sensitive information without any fear.
However, if someone were to get their hands on information about your therapy sessions, they could use it against you in a variety of ways. This could include blackmailing you, harassing you, or spreading rumors.
The therapeutic relationship is built on trust and respect. If this trust is violated by revealing confidential information, it can damage the relationship irreparably.
When you feel safe and comfortable sharing personal information with your therapist, it allows for healing to take place. If you do not feel confident that your privacy will be protected, you may be less likely to share information that is important for your therapist to know.
Helps Therapist Work Effectively
It is important for therapists to be able to hear and understand the things that they share with them. If your therapist cannot keep the information confidential, it can prevent this from happening which will ultimately hinder their ability to help you heal.
Reasons For Breaking Therapist Client Confidentiality
However, there are many reasons for breaking therapist-client confidentiality. The most common are as follows:
Therapist Is No Longer Qualified To Treat You
If your therapist feels that they are no longer able to help you, they may refer you to another therapist or health care professional. In this case, they would be required to share information about the therapeutic relationship with the new therapist in order for them to provide effective treatment.
You Are Danger To Yourself
If your therapist believes that you are a danger to yourself or others, by law, they can break confidentiality and report their concerns to appropriate authorities.
Relationship Has Ended
When the therapeutic relationship ends, both parties are typically released from any obligations of confidentiality. This means that your therapist can share information about the sessions with anyone they choose.
In some cases, there may be reasons for breaking confidentiality. If this is the case, your therapist will discuss it with you and get your authorization before taking any action.
How Therapist-Client Confidentiality Affects You?
The way that therapist-client confidentiality affects you largely depends on the level of trust that you have in your therapist. If you do not feel confident that your privacy will be protected, it can prevent you from sharing important information and hinder your healing process.
This means that you should choose a therapist who can uphold the ethical and legal standards of confidentiality. If your therapist does not feel comfortable keeping information about you confidential, it may be beneficial to find another one that can.
Precautions To Protect Therapist Client Confidentiality
Furthermore, there are many precautions you can take to protect your privacy during therapy sessions. Some of these include:
Remain Anonymous Whenever Possible
If possible, remain anonymous when attending appointments with your therapist. This will ensure that no personal or identifying information is written down and recorded anywhere within their office or on any paperwork they provide.
Avoid Sharing Sensitive Details
Your friends and family members might mean well, but sharing details about your therapy sessions outside the therapeutic relationship can be harmful. Unless your therapist gives you specific permission to do so, avoid discussing the details of your sessions with anyone else.
If you need to contact your therapist outside of the session, ask them to keep all communications confidential. This includes emails, text messages, and phone calls.
Be Aware of Everything
Many therapists record their sessions for review purposes or to document the progress made by their patients. If this is something that makes you uncomfortable, let them know and take steps to ensure that no sensitive information is captured on any recording devices.
Make Sure Therapist Understands Confidentiality
It is important to confirm that your therapist understands the importance of confidentiality. You should know if he/she will keep it. If you ever feel that they are not doing a good job at this, consider seeking professional help from someone else who can provide you with effective treatment in a safe environment.
Therapist client confidentiality is an important part of the therapeutic process. If you are considering seeing a therapist, it’s important to know about their policies on privacy and confidentiality before starting therapy sessions with them. A good place to start would be by asking what they do if someone makes threats or attempts suicide, as these events can happen in any profession. You should also ask how much time therapists spend with other patients outside of appointments; this may make deciding between different practitioners easier for you depending on your preferences. It’s worth noting that many therapists will offer free consultations so that you can learn more about them before committing to treatment programs–this gives both individuals time to decide whether they want the same thing out of therapy sessions together.
A Word From Mantra Care
Your mental health — your psychological, emotional, and social well-being — has an impact on every aspect of your life. Positive mental health essentially allows you to effectively deal with life’s everyday challenges.
At Mantra Care, we have a team of therapists who provide affordable online therapy to assist you with issues such as depression, anxiety, stress, relationship, OCD, LGBTQ, and PTSD. You can take our mental health test. You can also book a free therapy or download our free Android or iOS app.