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Therapeutic relationship

 There are few comparisons to the unique relationship therapists and clients create together.  It is professional, yet emotionally intimate. 

This subject is fascinating.  There are few comparisons to the unique relationship therapists and clients create together.  It is professional, yet emotionally intimate.  It is essentially a one way relationship, yet clients do get to know a part of us  It takes great courage to present for therapy.  It is very difficult for most of us to tell our story, reveal our vulnerabilities to a stranger. We understand this and try to make people feel as comfortable as possible.  Psychologist Carl Rogers coined the phrase “unconditional positive regard”. Most therapists use this concept as a starting place.  We trust our clients.  We know sometimes we haven’t heard the whole story. We aren’t surprised when farther into therapy, we hear new information.  We are trained to accept what client tell us at face value, meet them where they are and proceed accordingly.

While we act as therapists, we are often teachers, traffic cops, cheerleaders, surrogate parents or friends. We model good communications skills and boundaries. I once had a client who said “you be my backbone”.  She needed courage to face her abuser.  I agreed, but only temporarily. “I’ll be your backbone and help you develop your own.”  Occasionally, a client may practice with the therapist, but we don’t always know it is coming.  A client can safely express anger or pain within the therapeutic process. It’s essentially practice for real life and we provide the safety to express what they are going through. No one else may even know anything about it.

It is a very special and rewarding career. It is completely private.  We often hear things no one in our client’s life has ever heard. Therapy is a safe place to share feelings that friends or family may not understand.  We hear those thoughts and feelings and accept the client anyway. No judgement.  The privacy is, of course, essential and the law, but we work with heroic individuals who face tremendous obstacles quietly.  We get to witness how amazing our clients are and we may be the only ones.  We have great pride for our clients.  They are amazing people.

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Bel Air, MD 21014 


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Crofton, MD 21114 


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Silver Spring, MD 20910


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