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Breastfeeding mum put back to the bottom of counselling waiting list after male therapist refused her an appointment

(37 Posts)
LSNMedia Thu 13-Nov-14 18:32:06

Quite unbelievable that this could happen:
"A VULNERABLE mum has been sent back to the bottom of the waiting list for counselling because her therapist was ‘uncomfortable’ with her possibly needing to breastfeed during a session."

Ihatechoosingausername Thu 13-Nov-14 18:36:16

I think he could do with a bit of therapy himself

Pixel Thu 13-Nov-14 19:39:20

I think she should look on it as a lucky escape. He doesn't sound mature enough to be giving advice to anyone.

Fisharefriendsnotfood Thu 13-Nov-14 19:40:38

Fucking hell shock

Booboostoo Thu 13-Nov-14 20:28:56

Surely this is grounds for dismissal!

BoneyBackJefferson Fri 14-Nov-14 18:16:27

If the councilor wasn't comfortable then this was best for the both of them.

Booboostoo Fri 14-Nov-14 20:38:13

Boney if the counsellor was uncomfortable with her being gay/Muslim/black would it be better for both of them if she went to the bottom of the list to see another councillor? Discrimination is wrong in every circumstance but particularly abhorrent when practiced by a health care professional and it affects patient care as a result.

BoneyBackJefferson Sat 15-Nov-14 08:45:46


Ignoring the "isms" counselling will not work unless both parties are entirely comfortable in the presence of each other.

It isn't a good situation but I would question how productive any counselling would be if both parties are not at ease with each other.

littleducks Sat 15-Nov-14 08:56:05

So why was she put to the bottom couldn't she have been at the top waiting for a different councillor?

SevenZarkSeven Sat 15-Nov-14 09:04:26

What little ducks said.

SevenZarkSeven Sat 15-Nov-14 09:07:35

Not just the bottom, but the bottom and a female councillor which could take even longer. As the woman says, why does it need to be a woman? Of the patient is happy with either.

msrisotto Sat 15-Nov-14 09:11:07

I don't believe she would be put at the bottom of the list. That part sounds like the paper made it up.

Booboostoo Sat 15-Nov-14 10:12:37

boney if a person has hang ups that effectively make him discriminate in the care he offers others then counselling is not the right profession for him. Doctors, nurses and all other health care professionals have a duty of care towards their patients and they can't overcome their prejudices to treat their patients based on need they are in the wrong profession. This applies to other professions as well, can you imagine a teacher refusing to teach a child because he felt uncomfortable with the child's race, appearance, religion, etc and therefore couldn't establish a relationship of trust?

BoneyBackJefferson Sat 15-Nov-14 10:39:24


Can you imagine a doctor, nurse or pharmacist not giving someone the MAP because of their beliefs?

It happens. If someone is uncomfortable with the actions of another person whose rights should come first?

LittleBairn Sat 15-Nov-14 10:43:20

I feel he probably needs some therapy himself and face disciplinary action.
Whilst I agree with Booney it is best she wasn't seen by someone who would judge her and make her uncomfortable. I do not see why this should mean she is placed at the bottom of the list?

LittleBairn Sat 15-Nov-14 10:45:52

If a Dr, Midwife or pharmists refuses to involve themselves in abrotions etc because of thier beliefs it doesn't mean the patient is denied or delayed treatment they are immediately passed onto another member of staff.

Booboostoo Sat 15-Nov-14 10:47:58

Conscientious objection has very limited applications in the health care professions, usually relating to abortion and with the clause that the objector must refer urgently to another doctor.

The clinical ethics committee I was involved with once had to adjudicate in the case of an A&E doctor whose religion forbid him from touching women. He was fired as his religious beliefs were incompatible with the duties of his position. The rights to medical care of sick female patients clearly trumped his religious rights.

msrisotto Sat 15-Nov-14 11:18:27

Therapists are human....everyone has hang ups and if something makes them uncomfortable, it is better to refer the person to a different therapist. It isn't like administering a pill (which Drs are allowed to do).

Pixel Sat 15-Nov-14 17:33:59

It wasn't even definite that she would need to feed the baby. She could probably have fed him beforehand and chances are he'd have slept through the whole thing. How long is a counselling session anyway?

LittleBairn Sat 15-Nov-14 18:09:33

He may be human but he still has to abide by professional standards and sex discrimination laws.

CelesteToTheDance Sat 15-Nov-14 23:15:35

You're not going to get much therapy done with a six month old hanging off you and causing constant distraction. I can't blame the therapist for not wanting to deal with that. As for the breast feeding, well he'd be in an enclosed space directly in front of her, where is he supposed to look? It's not like he can turn around or leave the room. If that would be uncomfortable for him then he's right to say it. Not everybody wants to see that. Especially with an older baby whose going to be looking around, moving and potentially giving the therapist an unwanted eyeful.

I wouldn't like to see that either if I couldn't look away, it would turn me off my lunch.

SirChenjin Sat 15-Nov-14 23:21:41

Whilst she should not have been pushed to the bottom of the queue - absolutely not - it's not inappropriate for a counsellor to refuse to see a patient. In order for a session to be productive, the relationship between both parties has to be comfortable and open, and if he felt it wouldn't be then he has every right to refer her to another counsellor.

Btw - he's not necessarily a health professional. He's a counsellor attached to a GP practice, which usually means that his services have been bought in, as opposed to a CPN or other professional from NHS mental health services.

Gunpowder Sat 15-Nov-14 23:31:49

Celeste would it really put you off your lunch? confused

minifingers Sun 16-Nov-14 07:43:41

Celeste that's a hideous comment.

Booboostoo Sun 16-Nov-14 08:19:46

Celeste have a biscuit in case you've been 'turned off' your lunch.

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