Explorations in Ethics
I don't sell other products such as essential oils, herbs or supplements only because it is more of a problem than anything. I do recommend things that I read about and try myself - and I read many health related publications. I usually preface it with " I just read about this or heard about this treatment or If I were you I'd try this". I only do this with people I know may be open to the information.
When deciding what treatment a client needs it is often difficult not to do what I want to do on them -what I think would be the best not necessarily what they may want at the moment. I practice deep tissue and Zentherapy® and have lost some clients because I think that the 10 session work would be the best for them when they just want to relax and not have to work themselves. Just because you know a certain technique or method - does that mean you can just do it on anyone? How do you keep in mind what they really need and combine the things that you know?
I often think of what treatments would
be like if I didn't charge at all for them and did them for free. Would
I be able to practice techniques that I want to that I believe are the
best for the client? Would I have to listen to what the client wants?
Would the dynamics change? for the better? for worse? These
are just a few questions for exploration.
Sex and Bodywork
I have only had one case of a male becoming
aroused during a treatment. It was when I first started my practice.
The guy requested work on the upper thigh and groin area because he said
he had a groin pull from running. He told me that he always gets
that kind of work from another respected therapist who I had heard of.
She was a teacher at a massage school that I knew and respected.
I didn't even think that it wasn't a legitimate request until I could
see the sheet rising and I knew an uncomfortable situation was at hand.
What was I going to do? I didn't really know and will never know
as the fire alarm in the building rang and I excused myself to go check
and see if we had to evacuate the building. I left and came back
about 10 minutes later and everything was all right. I finished the
treatment without further problems.
Determining your own code of ethics and examining your boundaries is an ongoing process. As your work changes, your life changes so goes your practice and relationships with clients. I don't think it is possible to have a bodywork/massage practice without some transference and counter-transference. It is whether you are aware of the dynamics and constantly improving yourself to limit the influence that crossing some boundaries has on your treatment. It is important to always be working on your own issues outside of your practice to improve your work. This is done best through taking care of yourself through practicing meditation, breathing exercises, or whatever makes you feel more alive and aware. Awareness is what will make your practice different : more effective, more successful, more fulfilling.
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