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Ethics violation?

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Ethics violation?

Postby metanerd278 » Wed May 04, 2022 2:06 am

Let me see if I can provide enough background and context for this to make sense..

So, my son's mother and I are in a custody battle. We were never married, so by default she has full custody. He's 7 years old. In court, last year, I brought up concerns to the Judge regarding parental alienation, and other things. The Judge ordered that my son get in with a therapeutic provider until further order of the court, or until a provider no longer deems it necessary.

My son saw 3 in-person therapists last year. His mother pulled him from his first therapist because she got upset that we talked one on one (about my son), but rationalized pulling him from her to me by saying that she "hadn't provided theoretical advice". After only 3 sessions with her. My son's other two therapists had to leave their practice for unrelated reasons.

This year, my son's mother began him with a virtual therapist (as an attempt to minimize my involvement and cut me out). The therapist had virtual play therapy with my son mostly at his mother's house for about 3 months. Only two sessions were done at my house, under the knowledge of his mother.

Well - after my son's last session at my house, his mother got upset again. I live with my fiance and her daughter. Well, the therapist wanted to know my son's whole world in order to better help him - which includes them as well. So, she talked to them for part of his session, and him, and asked questions about our family dynamic.

My son lives with his brother, grandmother, and mother in their apartment - and the therapist did the same with them.

I don't know exactly my son's mother's reasons for what she does, because she lies a lot, but she abruptly discontinued my son's sessions because she got upset that the therapist changed it from "individual to family counseling" without her consent (she was upset that my fiance and daughter were included, whom she is always extremely rude to at exchanges). She told me she is postponing his sessions until she provides her findings about his diagnosis and how to move forward, and then that she "must consider my son's privacy and how his medical information is being protected." In short, to me - she's trying to find some loophole and rationalize getting my son out of therapy somehow.

A while after she told me all of this, my son's mother said that she "refused to provide a summary and a plan. Per Georgia guidelines for her field, she was not performing ethically and her services were ended." This was after she sent the therapist a letter questioning her credibility and ethics. The ethics violation she understands is the therapist not providing "clear and informed consent" about a treatment plan.

The therapist responded to her, and my son's mother sent me a redacted copy of that letter which only included what she wrote about his diagnosis. The therapist and I spoke on the phone about the letter. She did not support my son's mother's position at all. She told me the contents of her letter, which included:- Her thoughts on my son's diagnosis.- That my son should NOT be out of therapy.- That she still recommended a psych eval (recommended to mom last month but not acted on).- That she conducted her sessions ethically and including my fiance and her daughter was not in violation.- That a parent shouldn't be allowed to dictate my son's sessions and how they go.- That she doesn't think her actions would be looked upon favorably in the face of court proceedings.

What are your thoughts on all of this? Did the therapist violate any ethics? My son's mother sent me this link, which she also sent the therapist:

https://www.clinicalsocialworkassociati ... SWA-Ethics

The therapist is a LCSW with over 20 years of experience..

Thank you, in advance.
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Re: Ethics violation?

Postby Snaga » Wed May 04, 2022 7:04 pm

Hello and welcome to the forums!

I'm not sure anyone would be here who can definitively answer that, and since dispensing legal or medical advice from an authoritative position would be against forum rules anyway, I'm not sure anyone could give you a cut and dried answer.

If it were me, I think I'd be inclined to call the judge's office and just let them know one of us (not me!) keeps throwing roadblocks up in the way of that court-ordered therapy. Up to and including accusing therapists of being unethical because she doesn't want your new family involved. I would leave that last bit out, but yeah I think I'd let the court know one of the parties is repeatedly finding fault with therapy and derailing it. Judge may not appreciate that.

But that's just me. Not saying you should do that. It's already hard enough on the kid; my parents divorced when I was 10 or so and I can tell you right now it sucks big time. My way of coping included some very uncharacteristic vandalism on my part. Kid needs his therapy but this is a sticky situation, isn't it?
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