Information you share with your therapist is treated with due care and confidentiality. This is a fundamental principle in counselling and psychotherapy. However, client safety, ethical concerns and the law of the land must also be taken into consideration by your therapist. This means that no counsellor or psychotherapist can guarantee a client absolute or unlimited confidentiality.
Ethics and the Law
There are a number of circumstances in which some of the information you share may need to be disclosed to others. These circumstances include:
Client safety – in an emergency situation where the therapist is concerned for the immediate safety of a suicidal client intent on taking his/her own life,
Child protection – where the therapist has grounds to be concerned for the safety of children who she/he believes may be at serious risk of sexual abuse.
Psychotherapists, like other professionals in health, education and social policy, have requirements to meet under Irish law governing child protection and welfare i.e. Children First, 2011.
Mary will inform you of the issues relating to client confidentiality at the beginning of counselling or psychotherapy. If you have questions at any stage, please ask for further information.