As a counsellor/therapist, is it OK to reveal information about yourself to your clients? If so, are there specific guidelines around if or how this can be helpful? Clinical Psychologist and Mind Expert, Leanne Hall breaks down the guiding principles of how and when to use self-disclosure in counselling.
The “rules” of self-disclosure are a little muddy. For example, psychoanalysts believe quite strongly that self-disclosure is counterproductive as it distorts client’s transference.
Conversely, Cognitive Behavioural therapists believe that self-disclosure can be a useful tool in therapy as it models and reinforces new perspectives for the client.
So basically, your therapeutic orientation is a powerful factor in determining whether revealing personal information to your clients is ok. But isn’t that confusing? Especially if like many counsellors and therapists, you move between several orientations.