A “highly regarded” Jewish psychotherapist has been suspended from a professional association for six months over misconduct allegations.
A panel of the UK Council for Psychotherapy ruled in December that Jonathan Rabson’s fitness to practice had been impaired “by reasons of misconduct.”
Rabson was ordered to complete at least 18 sessions with a professional from the College for Sexual and Relationship Psychotherapy in light of his “inability to recognise the complexity and boundaries of working with a couple in a family context.”
A complaint was lodged against Rabson in December 2016 by a former patient who had sought help after experiencing a range of “family difficulties” relating to her marriage and children, according to the ruling, published online.
The ruling cites “growing concerns in respect of some of the children” and notes the involvement of an educational psychologist, child psychiatrist and social care team.
It also says “there had also been engagement with the court process in regard to non-molestation orders and occupation orders.”
The panel considered Rabson’s “previously unblemished record” and the apology he offered to give to the complainant. But the panel did not consider a verbal or written apology appropriate given the “vulnerability” of the patient and may “exacerbate the situation.”
Testimonials submitted by Rabson’s supervisor and colleagues showed he is “highly regarded within his community and that many consider that it will be a loss to the community if he is unable to practise,” the panel found.
Among concerns, Rabson forwarded email exchanges with the patient to her ex-husband in 2016, later asking him to delete the email chain, according to the ruling.
He is alleged to have privately met the patient’s sister without her consent or knowledge, later denying the meeting took place – and advised the patient’s ex-husband on steps he could take against her in family proceedings without first obtaining her consent.
He supplied a “grossly misleading” letter to solicitors acting on behalf of the patient’s ex-husband in June 2016 to be used in family proceedings involving safeguarding issues, according to the ruling.
The letter is believed to have made “unqualified statements” about the patient’s mental health that were neither “accurate” nor “neutral.” The ruling found it “contained opinion” beyond Rabson’s expertise and misused psychiatric language.
Jonathan Rabson said: “For legal reasons, I am advised I am unable to discuss this case.”