Cultural Competence in Counseling

In today’s society there Is a multitude of culturally diverse Individuals. As a mental health counselor It Is not only In my best Interest to make sure that I am aware of my own cultural heritage, but it is also my responsibility to insure that I am aware of my client’s cultural heritage. The purpose of this paper is to discuss how culturally different I am from a client in the following case study Jiao is a young Asian woman who immigrated to the United States from her homeland in China.

She is the only child and her parents own a small business and have worked very hard to be able to send her to college. Her parents want her to eventually become a Doctor when she graduates from college. Since Jiao has been In college she has become aware that she is really skilled at painting and she enjoys it a lot. Jiao studying habits and her grades has suffered because she spends much of her free time painting. Jiao has been seeing a counselor because she wants help improving her studying habits.

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She also states that she has been feeling tired this semester and that’s why her grades are not good. There are many ways In which I am culturally different from my client Gala. My client Gala Is an Aslant female who migrated from China to the united States with her parents. Her biological parents are successful small business owners that left their native country to pursue greater opportunities in the United States. I on the other hand am an African-American male born in the United States and was abandon by my biological parents when I was Just a toddler.

I do not come from parents who had a successful career In any occupation. Neither of my parents even graduated from high school, they were alcoholics and drug users, My parents did not have a career goal In mind for me, because they did not care. Gala parents on the other hand had dreams of her graduating from college and becoming a doctor. In Jiao free time she enjoys painting and attending art shows. In my free time I enjoy playing chess and watching TV shows on my laptop. Jiao is seeing a counselor because she wants help improving her studying habits.

I never have and I never will go too counselor because I need help with grades. These are Just some of the ways in which Gala and I are culturally different. Knowing the differences between myself and Jiao Is not enough to be considered culturally competent, I must also understand the worldview of Jiao (Sue ; Sue, 2014). Being knowledgeable and understanding Jiao worldview may not be enough to convince Jiao to continue coming to counseling sessions with me. I should be able to demonstrate my cultural competence to her.

For example, if Jiao started talking about her parents and the expectation that many traditional Asians have of their children, I could show my competency In this area by stating to Jiao that I understand her parents wanting her to be a successful doctor, but I would be willing to help her present other career possibilities to her parents (Sue ; Sue, 2013). This task could be a difficult one for Jiao because in many Asian cultures it is normal for parents to pick and choose a career for their children without their children input.