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Ethics and Values

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Carla Britton-Jones

Professor Glenda Momrelle-Clarke        


February 11, 2018

Reflection Paper 1

1.        Yes, it is both possible and desirable for counselors to remain neutral with respect to their clients’ values so as to keep their values from influencing clients’ (Corey, Corey, Corey, & Callahan).  However, I will discuss three ways in which my personal values may affect the counseling process and three ways to overcome these challenges.

a.        The fear of doing harm to female clients’ who are in abusive or coming out of relationships. I was physically, emotionally, and psychology abused as a young child and as an adult. I feel that I may inadvertently do more harm than good in the helping relationship by saying the wrong thing, and project my feelings and emotions unto the clients known as counter-transference (Corey, Corey, Corey, & Callahan). I have psychological wounds that has yet to be healed and I may lose my objectivity towards the clients’ problems. I can be quite outspoken at times and ask questions that may seem harsh and /or insensitive in regards to the clients’ crisis.  I will not the clients to feel that they that are alone in this and cannot escape the guilt that comes with being abused. I believe as a child one has no choice to accept the abuse; but, as you get older and you know better you can stop the cycle. My moral beliefs are that women; no matter the situation should not allow themselves to become abused and be made to feel useless and that the situation is their fault.

b.        The tendency to assume too much responsibility for the clients’.  I fear that as counselor with a history of abuse; I will over step my boundaries with the clients’ and create an unhealthy dependency in and out of the helping relationship. I may not give the clients’ the opportunity to make decisions on their own without my input and guidance on the “Do’s” and “Do nots” in dealing with their crisis. I am the kind of person that likes to make sure that they are taking the necessary precautions to stay safe and take care of themselves.  I fear that the process of helping may be extended longer than it should and will cause me to over extend myself and cause burnout.

c.        My values pertaining to females having an abortion. I am very judgmental and vocal on the subject. I fear that I may not be able to maintain a sense of objectivity as my beliefs may get in the way of the counseling process. If the clients are teenagers; I believe that I might ask too many leading questions that might make me seem nosey in the helping relationship. I may have a hard time connecting and compartmentalizing my values instead of building trust in the relationship and working towards her goals. I advocate safe sex and believe that there are other options that clients’ can consider instead of killing a viable fetus especially if the fetus has no defects or has died inside of the womb.

To overcome these challenges in the counseling process

a.        In order to overcome my fear of doing harm to the clients’, I have to be aware of my feelings and engage in personal therapy; so that I can be an effective counselor and not impose my values and beliefs. In doing that I will be getting help in coping with my past. Also, I have to realize that I am no longer a victim of circumstance and that I am where I want to be and who I am, with that being said I have to realize that I am not perfect and to learn to control and regulate my thoughts, feelings and behaviors (Neale, 2018). In overcoming that I will be effective and be able to empower my clients. However, if I find that I cannot help the client(s) because of too much memories I will have a conversation with my supervisor and notify him/her of the situation.

b.        I will have to explain the limitations of the counseling process in and out of therapy and adhere to it. I will disclose the potential similarities that we have in common and empathize with them, promote independence and empowerment.  In doing so, I will have created boundaries so there is no creation of dependency on both sides.  If they do require help out of the office, they can call at a certain time. If it is an emergency they can call 311 or a crisis hotline.

c.        I have to compartmentalize my thoughts and realize that my values and beliefs are not those of the clients’ and that I have to be unbiased. I cannot impose my values and beliefs unto the clients.  I have to aware of myself and realize that the clients are there for guidance, unbiased information about their options, to discuss their feelings, and come to a decision without pressure or judgment.


Corey, G., Corey, M. S., Corey, C., & Callahan, P. (n.d.). Issues and Ethics in the Helpinh Professions. Cengage Publishing.

Michael C. LaSala Ph.D., L. (n.d.). (Sussex Publishers, LLC ) Retrieved from

Neale, S. (2018, February 13). Retrieved from

  1. An investment counselor who misleads clients to get a commission and who is not held accountable.  I would need to seek supervision because as a counselor he is committing a crime. According, to the NOHS codes standard 4 if there is suspected danger or harm I will have to consult the codes and then seek supervision. He has a responsibility to his clients, himself and to the profession to act ethically and professionally within the scope of his abilities. In seeking supervision, I will ask, how do I proceed with this client? Am I allowed to break confidentiality? Do I have a direct conversation colleague to colleague outside of therapy to address the situation?
  2. A teenager who is having unsafe sex and sees no problem with this behavior.  I can work this teenager effectively by finding out the reasons why she thinks her behavior is okay. Based on the answers given, I can use the psychodynamic approach to find out information about her childhood and upbringing. Maybe she was raped, maybe she has low self- esteem, and this is her way of getting people to like her or be friends with her. Maybe she has no support at home. Whatever the situation I can use Gestalt approach to help become more aware of her actions and take responsibility in understanding her present situation.  I will have to invite her mom to session so that we can talk about what’s going on in the home or reasons behind being promiscuous.
  3. A person who shows little conscience development, who is strictly interested in his or her own advancement, and uses others to achieve personal aims. I would be a challenge working with this client, as him/her behavioral problems is out of my scope of counseling. He /she is a psychopath. Psychopaths are manipulative, and can mimic emotions and has charming personalities.  I would not know how to effectively counsel such client because of their antisocial personality.
  4. An undocumented worker seeking assistance in coping with severe discrimination by an employer. I could work with this person effectively as I can help her cope with the discrimination that she is facing. One of the first things is to ensure that she takes care of her health; as she may have high stress levels. I will use a multi-interdisciplinary approach to work with her and refer her/him to medical, to a legal aid clinic and of course continuing counseling.  The use of the multi-disciplinary is meant to educate him/her about other resources that are available out there. My job is to listen, empower and motivate him/ her to focus on his/her strengths and allow him/her to make the best decisions in dealing with the discrimination.
  5. A gay or lesbian couple wanting to work on conflicts in their relationship.  I can work with this couple, as they no different than heterosexual couple in having conflicts.  According to (Michael C. LaSala Ph.D.) as with any couple you have thinking about what needs to happen for the couple to overcome their obstacles, to get them to learn to communicate with each other and negotiate conflicts-NOT who is wrong or right. (Most likely, they both are.) In moving forward, I can set goals where by they can say something nice to each other and not be insensitive; instead try to find away to move forward in the relationship and have the relationship that they want.



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