When working as a homeless service provider, remember that forming a trusting relationship does not mean that you have to share your personal life. This boundary can be difficult to maintain over time. The professional relationship may begin to seem like a friendship. It is natural to form this strong relationship, but make sure that it stays professional.
Here are a few behaviors to watch out for when consumer/staff relations are going beyond professional:
- reciprocal discussion of private lives
- non-work related social meetings
- expressions of love or intimate feelings
Both consumers and providers are susceptible to these behaviors. Take time to be aware of how your relationships are progressing and make sure that they remain professional.
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