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Casual Encounters for Off-the-Cuff Advice: Managing a Professional Problem

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Publication Date: December 1979

Publisher(s): Jewish Communal Service Association of North America)

Author(s): Moshe HaLevi Spero

Series: Journal of Jewish Communal Service, 56-2

Special Collection: Berman Jewish Policy Archive

Topic: Social conditions (Psychology)

Keywords: Psychology; Orthodox Judaism; Professionalism

Type: Report

Coverage: United States


The author discusses a common problem for therapeutic professionals: casual, off-the-cuff requests for instant advice or diagnoses when encountering the professional in a social situation. People asking therapists for instant diagnosis on the go may be dismissive of the seriousness of their question, writes the author, or even disrespectful of the profession of psychotherapy. The author argues that professionals should neither take offense to these off-putting emotional self-defense mechanisms nor try to answer such questions in such a casual setting. Rather, he says, the professional should positively encourage the would-be client to make an appointment.

In Journal of Jewish Communal Service, v.56 no.2, Winter 1979.