Respecting diversity is an ethical mandate in the counseling profession and Scripture. Yet, many
counselors assume that passion and companionship are universal marital values. Add to that
one?۪s biblically-informed values, and we can easily find ourselves imposing on clients our well-
defined notions regarding how couples should meet, develop intimacy, marry, and be a family.
For many of us, these beliefs and values about relationships are based on Western cultural and
evangelical subcultural values, and we believe they are supported by particular interpretations
of Scripture and Christian and cultural history. As professionals who conduct relationship
counseling in an increasingly diverse and complex world, how can we respond effectively? Are
there ways to minimize imposing our perspectives for the benefit of our clients?
Presented by: Fred Gingrich, D.Min.
- Identify the growing cultural differences in definitions of healthy marriages and relationships within one’s clientele
- Evaluate the implicit and explicit definitions of marriage in popular approaches to marriage counseling
- Formulate strategies to avoid imposing one’s own view of marriage on one’s clients