Eye on Ethics: The Boundaries of Self-disclosures in Clinical Social Work
Department (Manual Entry)
School of Social Work
In addition to the clinical sequelae, social workers must also be mindful of the ethical implications of self-disclosure. Self-disclosure can introduce complex boundary issues that may lead to questionable dual relationships. A clinical social worker who discloses details about her birthday may have to deal with uncomfortable boundary issues if her client brings the social worker an expensive or intimate birthday gift. A social worker who shares personal information about his religion may have to deal with a client’s invitation to attend a local worship service.
Reamer, Frederic G., "Eye on Ethics: The Boundaries of Self-disclosure in Clinical Social Work," Social Work Today, January, 2011, available at: http://www.socialworktoday.com/news/eoe_011111.shtml