The Dynamics and Processes of ‘Ending’ in Clinical Supervision

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While there is a growing number of papers in academic and professional nursing journals that focus on clinical supervision, there remain unanswered questions and unresolved issues. One such issue where there is a distinct paucity of theoretical or empirical work is that of ‘ending’ within clinical supervision. Accordingly, this article examines key issues and dynamics of ending within clinical supervision. These key issues are summarized as: ending when the supervisor is reluctant to let go; parallel processes in ending in clinical supervision and ending in clinical relationships; the different ending dynamics of different approaches to clinical supervision; endings in group supervision; ending as a form of bereavement; healthy endings in clinical supervision; and endings as an opportunity for growth and celebration. The authors posit that an understanding of these processes can help facilitate a ‘healthy’ ending in clinical supervision. Furthermore, there may be particular merit in considering dynamics that, when present, create the best chance of all parties experiencing a healthy ending, namely: the ending is negotiated; the ending is gradual rather than sudden and all parties work towards the ending; the supervisee retains (wherever possible) a degree of control over the timing of the ending; and both supervisor and supervisee achieve a sense of closure.


To acquire a personal use copy of this work, contact John Cutcliffe at john.cutcliffe@wright.edu.



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