Should I look at my counsellor as my friend?
It is easiest to develop friendship and bonding with someone who is a good listener. Counsellors try to understand without judging you and that makes them our most sought after person when in a tricky situation. Hence, it would be fine to look at a counsellor as your friend, or so it seems?
It is natural to be friends with people who listen to you and not just hear you. However, a friendship to take place you need to listen from both the sides which does not take place in counselling sessions. It is you who is talking and the counsellor is listening to your worries, thoughts and situations. You cannot consider the counsellor as your friend.
How much do you know about the counsellor as much he knows about you? Chances are you only know about counsellor’s degree and designation. Surely that doesn’t qualify being friends.
Even though you’re at your worst phase of life when you meet a counsellor, you may still be behaving well. That means the counsellor has not seen your usual and casual self. You are at your lowest point of time and it is natural to feel comfortable with someone you can emotionally lean on.
Counselling sessions are uninterrupted time to discuss and resolve issues which otherwise is unlikely in any other situation as everyone is busy in today’s world. Since the time very focussed it gives opportunity to listen to and understand the patient. We should understand that this has potential for natural affinity towards our counsellors and not necessarily a forging friendship.
Counsellors are human too and are not perfect beings. They are responding to your queries with as much professionalism and with a clinical approach. Of course, they empathise with you but they also have to abide by the rule book and work within the framework of their profession.
It is best to forge a relationship based on the framework of a therapist and a patient. Since an objective view is required, anything more between the counsellor and the patient defeats the purpose of counselling sessions. It is critical to success of the counselling.
Author: Vibhuti Chhibber