Recruiting, Selecting, and Retaining Direct Service Workers to Provide Self-Directed HCBS

Boundaries When Your DSW is Family or a Friend

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A DSW and a person with a disability entering a home. The DSW is supporting the person by holding their arm.

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Boundaries may be hard when your DSW is family or a friend.  Talk with them about how their role is different when they are providing your supports and when they are not.  Suggestions for achieving a professional relationship when your DSW is a friend or family member:

  • Everybody needs privacy. It is okay to ask for more privacy if you need it.
  • Communication is an important piece of establishing boundaries.
  • Establishing boundaries can be very helpful and will reduce your stress as well as stress for your DSW.
  • Be upfront about telling people what you want or need.