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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Culturally-competent counselling with consensually non-monogamous clients : a narrative inquiry Friederichsen, Rachel May


Consensual non-monogamy (CNM) is a viable relationship practice, yet there is evidence for persisting stigma towards these relationship forms in society and in the disciplines of psychology and counselling. While clinical recommendations for counselling practice with CNM clients have been produced, it is not always clear how these recommendations ought to materialize in practice. This research project explored the following research question through narrative inquiry: How is culturally competent counselling practice achieved with consensually nonmonogamous clients? Three narrative accounts of counsellors who identify as being culturally competent to work with CNM clients were co-constructed through semi-structured interviews to gain insight into how these counsellors ensure their practice is ethically and culturally competent for CNM clients. Interview content was analyzed to identify salient themes, resulting in 40 categories and five major themes: knowledge, advocacy and advancement, affirmative integrative practice, minimization of judgment, and personal factors. The research findings reflected both existing literature on the subject and also illuminated new areas for consideration and research, achieving its aims of furthering understanding of culturally competent counselling with CNM clients. The findings serve to provoke further discussion regarding the enhancement of culturally competent counselling practice with CNM clients in the three areas most influential: knowledge, awareness, and skill.

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