Confidentiality is a big part of what makes counseling so effective. Being able to trust that the information discussed in session is private allows for honesty and a thorough examination of the issues at hand. I will review confidentiality policies with you before we begin, but it is important for you to know that what we discuss in session is confidential. I will not share information about you with anyone else without your permission. This policy is mandated by my professional counselor ethics as well as by the law.
HOWEVER, there are a few exceptions to this confidentiality guideline. We will discuss this further when we meet. I may share information discussed in session if you reveal:
- Suspected child abuse or dependent adult or elder abuse. I am required by law to report this to the appropriate authorities to protect vulnerable people.
- A threat of serious bodily harm to another person/s. I must notify the police and inform the intended victim as a duty I have to warn potential victims.
- Intent to harm yourself. I will make every effort to enlist your cooperation in ensuring your safety. If you do not cooperate, further measures may be taken in order to ensure their safety, such as notification of the crisis hotline, EMS or police.