HomePhilippine Journal of Counseling Psychologyvol. 21 no. 1 (2019)

Do Counselors Lie? An Inquiry on Dishonest Behaviors among Filipino Counselors

Estesa Xaris Legaspi | Jose Alberto S. Reyes



This study explored dishonest behaviors among Filipino counselors. Eighty-four Filipino counselors were asked to identify behaviors that they perceived as dishonest and to indicate the motivations behind these behaviors in workplace and everyday settings. Using thematic content analysis, results showed that counselors were dishonest towards a variety of targets including clients, colleagues, and superiors in the workplace. Outside the professional setting, counselors were also dishonest towards different targets. In both settings, counselors engaged in different types of dishonest behaviors such as outright lying, concealment, exaggeration, and non-verbal lying. Contents of dishonest behaviors in the workplace include counseling competencies and functions, while dishonest behaviors in everyday settings include contents such as feelings, evaluations, opinions, and others. Motives behind the dishonest behaviors were either self-centered or other-oriented. It appears that even if dishonesty is apparent in counselor behaviors, there are situations where these behaviors function to provide or promote a valuable benefit.