Friday, December 19, 2008

Mutual Attraction Between Therapist and Patient

Bird Dog sent me this post from Dr Joy Bliss over at Maggie's Farm who wrote a piece about a column in the Psychiatric Times from Dec 1 about a female psychiatry resident who developed romantic feelings towards a patient.  The resident's supervisor's reaction drew scorn in Joy's post for blaming the resident for the sin of being human:
"Well, I am glad she finally got to Dr. Gabbard, because he is one smart guy. Still, I found her supervisor's reponse deeply disheartening and soulless - if not neutered.

Fact is, as everybody knows, humans are prone to affection, attraction and attachment and there is nothing necessarily different about whether that occurs in a shrink's office, or between a businessman and his secretary, teacher and student, clergyman and congregant, trainer and client, doctor and nurse, lawyer and client, classmates, or business associates and office colleagues. Romantic feelings in offices (like many other emotions) are ubiquitous. Sometimes it's mutual... 
When you put people together, things of all sorts happen. Analysts and psychotherapists have the peculiar and challenging task of figuring those things out rather than acting on them."
She got help and referred the patient out, but I thought the post deserved attention so am linking it here. Interesting to read in the comments about the attempt to contact said psychiatrist, a Dr Lindsay Raymer at Baylor.

Thanks, Bird Dog.