Encyclopedia of Couple and Family Therapy

2019 Edition
| Editors: Jay L. Lebow, Anthony L. Chambers, Douglas C. Breunlin

Ethics in Couple and Family Therapy

  • Colleen M. PetersonEmail author
  • Marj Castronova
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-49425-8_525


Ethics in couple and family therapy is based on the long-held understanding that the therapeutic relationship between client and therapist is one of safety and trust, with therapists bearing the responsibility for ensuring that they are protecting that relationship and acting in the client’s best interest. A successful therapeutic relationship depends on clients being able to openly and honestly discuss things that are very personal and private, putting them in an extremely vulnerable position. The safety and protection of clients engaged in therapy are so vital that very specific expectations and requirements for therapist professional conduct have been developed in the form of professional Codes of Ethics and laws regulating the practice of licensed therapists. Unique to the ethics in couple and family therapy is the notion of the family or couple system; everyone is impacted both individually and relationally. At times this creates ethical dilemmas in that what is best...

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of NevadaLas VegasUSA
  2. 2.Relational Wellness InstituteLas VegasUSA

Section editors and affiliations

  • Rachel Diamond
    • 1
  1. 1.University of Saint JosephWest HarfordUSA