There came a time in my practice when, for some clients, the potential benefits of sharing a story or disclosure from my life, or responding when a client asked for a hug, seemed to outweigh the potential risks. I began, cautiously and in close consultation with clinical peers and supervisors, to introduce flexibility in my responses to some clients among those who broached the subject by asking me a direct question about my life or reaching out for my hand. In select cases where I assessed the potential risk to be relatively low that a client would become confused about the meaning, content, or intention of touch or self-disclosure, and when it seemed these might bring connection or help a client gain perspective, normalize thoughts or feelings, or reduce a sense of aloneness, I responded.


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