Self –disclosure and my understanding of it.
If you ask me should we self-disclose I would say :yes and no.Why?
Very simple if you are working with clients and are familiar with their problems and mindset it really is irrelevant if you are addict or an alcoholic.What really does matter is your eagerness to provide best professional services ,being ethical and readily available for your clients.If they do ask me point blank if I am one I do answer yes,however if they don’t I don’t have to go into the details of my life. In the end it is all about them ,not me and we all know if you’re talking about the problem you can not possibly be talking about the solution.And even when I do share I only talk about the way out and clear cut directions I undertook to get better.
Another thing is being appropriate :if I have clients that meet me outside I don’t act unless they make first contact or just say hi as a casual encounter.Once a client is always a client and I got that ingrained in my mind.War stories do not help we can share them forever that is called socializing,if we are to have professional approach we are to lead by example and that has to do with everybody:either you’re a recovered garbage bag or someone that never had a problem with drugs and alcohol. I live in ten,eleven and twelve on a daily basis,but I never sponsor clients that is a conflict of interest,they will never get my cell phone number and I wont invite them to my house.I would break bread with them ,but wont accept gifts other than a thank you letter.I will crack a joke with them ,but will never become their financial advisor and family counselor,I wont tell them how to act with opposite sex,but I will always offer a great book or meeting to visit.If my clients are at my home group meeting where I share so be it I will welcome them in the end we all have choices that is what recovery is all about changes in mindset and ability in making clear choices.
It is true that sometimes the fact that you have survived coma and numerous overdoses might be a catapult in reinforcing somebody’s desire to move forward with treatment ,but in the end unless a client has an intention and a at least a glimpse of willingness no matter what I would say will come in one ear and come out the other.
There’s a great saying:You can never say a wrong thing to a right person and and no matter how many right things you will tell the wrong person you will always miss the point.