Dellajoy asked in HealthMental Health · 1 decade ago

I have a client who I knew from way back but she is constantly calling me and driving me nuts...?

I am a home support worker. One of my clients is not much older than me and we grew up in the same small community. I help her once a week to clean her place because she has a hard time walking (she was hit by a car when she was a teen). She keeps getting depressed and so she constantly phones me to tell me what a terrible day she is having. She won't take any of my advice. Just sits in her apartment all day doing nothing except shaking and resting. Most of the time I don't answer her calls (caller ID) but then eventually I do and have to make up a story about where I was. But she is so depressing. What should I do or say without making her more depressed?


She does not pay for my services - the government does because she is on disability.

4 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    This usually happens when friends or acquaintances get into a professional or service relationship - and boundaries are not established. Social Workers, Counsellors, Psychiatrist, Doctors, Lawyers, and other groups of professionals - while obtaining their educational and training are taught and learn - that it is not good ethical practise to offer or accept services from someone that you've had some type of personal relationship. Because boundaries get crossed - expectations change - inappropriate behaviours start - exactly like the ones that you are describing now.

    I'm sure that you have a Supervisor of this agency - ask her/him how best to handle this situation. Maybe you can exchange with another service provider or you and another provider can take turns (one week you go - the next week she/he goes).

    You need to take professional, appropriate, and careful actions to resolve the breakdown of this service provider/client relationship .

    I have described it that way because that's what it is - that should have been maintained.

    By your own admission - this service provider/client relationship has gone wrong. It truly was and is your responsibility to maintain that standard - because the individual that is seeking the service is vulnerable. Now you must help to correct this with care and help from your Supervisor.

    Please don't ignore this and think that it will go away, get better, or maybe I can just ignore her calls. It's happened - resolve it professionally - because the person needing the service is the one in need - she' vulnerable - alone - feeling any number of emotions.

    This situation is why it's advised - refer to some other person, agency, or whatever - if they is a former relationship!

  • 1 decade ago

    be a bit careful

    people with depression are a bit hard to approach. however, you really should stop inventing stories about where you were and stuff. be honest with her.

    tell her what you think. the secret is: tell the truth, but do not shout or anything. do not tell her you understand her, you sympathize and everything. be precise, sharp, and calm. do not shout. do not preach. do not talk much.

    and another thing. suggest. if she wants to, she will listen . otherwise she will just sit there doing the same and there's not much you can do.

    nutritional aid: flax seed oil. (careful that it does not taste like fish or something).

    ps: i do not know if any of the above can help if she pays you. money deforms reality. if she does and you want to help her, first do not take money from her+ then do the rest.

    Source(s): worked on me. :-)
  • 1 decade ago

    How did she get your phone number? Don't give your personal phone number to clients...a big no-no... as you are finding out. You need to strengthen your personal/professional boundaries with her. Being honest is important but also setting limits with clients is huge. When you are working with her teach her about healthy boundaries and the importance of them in our lives. Explain to her why she should not call you on your personal phone when you aren't working. If she isn't able to respect the limits you set as a professional then you may need to ask your supervisor if she can be put on someone else's caseload. Be considerate of her mental health but being depressed does not excuse disrespect of others boundaries.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    It is simple, change your phone number

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