The simplest reason is the profound fact that our impact doesn’t always match our intention. In the example described in this article, the therapist’s intention was to set good and ethical boundaries with her client. The impact on the client, as you will see, was that she felt hurt, abandoned, betrayed, confused, and wrong.
Other reasons include cultural differences, impact of the power differential, projection, shame, and trauma responses. These are subjects for another article.
In the paper the other day, I found a letter in the “Dear Abby” column that was a painful example of how good intentions plus lack of skill and awareness of impact can cause more harm.
Read the rest of the article on GoodTherapy.org
Please note: I am a regular contributor to GoodTherapy.org, an association of mental health professionals from over 30 countries worldwide who support efforts to reduce harm in therapy. GoodTherapy.org is ranked as one of the top therapist directories on the web.