Counselors need to adopt culturally humble approaches with clients from different cultural backgrounds. According to Myers & Salt (2019), it is vital to be non-assuming, open, curious, and respect the different cultural identities. For example, Arab clients may present as indecisive, dependent, or nonverbally emotional. Such clients may be termed resistant in the mainstream context since they do not demonstrate common or valued Western societal behaviors. Cultural orientations such as requiring a spouse or family member during treatment among Arab clients may contribute toward such conduct. Therefore, in such cases, I will be keen to understand the client’s cultural background and refrain from making premature assumptions.
I will be keen to assess any cultural markers during counseling sessions, create opportunities to discuss the differences, and integrate them into the program. I will be careful to avoid assuming anything but come up with a hypothesis regarding the possible culturally based behavior or statements that clients might share during treatment. Involving the clients’ families with their consent can lay the foundation for future cooperation between a counselor and client (Koç & Kafa, 2019). It will also be vital to verify actions and statements by asking a client to explain, consulting family members, or involving colleagues in reviewing a case. In this regard, I will avoid making wrong assumptions based on the client’s cultural inclination.
I will also seek information regarding a family, including the community. According to Myers & Salt (2019), understanding information about help-seeking patterns and family involvement in the maintenance of problems can be a critical starting point for counselors. Other cultural factors like strong family ties among culturally diverse clients should be integrated into the treatment process. Therefore, the above considerations are likely to make the client feel safe and ready to be part of the treatment process.
Koç, V., & Kafa, G. (2019). Cross-cultural research on psychotherapy: The need for a change. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 50(1), 100-115.
Myers, P. L., & Salt, N. R. (2019). Becoming an addictions counselor: A comprehensive text (4th ed.). Burlington, MA: Jones & Bartlett Learning.