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This content is taken from the UEA (University of East Anglia)'s online course, The Role of Personal Assistants in Disability Support. Join the course to learn more.

Skip to 0 minutes and 3 seconds Avoiding conflict arising from close relationships. In this session, we’ll look at the difficulties that can arise from working closely with a single person. We will think about some practical steps towards preventing these problems. Personal assistance usually involves working with a single person, often for prolonged periods of time, and in relatively close confines. In immediate terms, the PA may want to do as many paid hours as possible and the employer may want to rely on a particularly consistent, efficient worker. But in the longer term, this can become problematic and unsustainable. Closeness can be hard for both the PA and the disabled person. Whenever people spend all their time together, this can cause problems, even if there’s no reason for it.

Skip to 0 minutes and 47 seconds People just get irritated with each other. But it’s harder in the PA situation because the disabled person and the PA are not choosing to spend time together, like friends would. They may have different values, hobbies and backgrounds. Alternatively, the informality and friendliness of the intense and intimate PA/disabled employer relationship can lead to blurred boundaries.

Avoiding ‘proximal’ sources of conflict (closeness)

In this video Tom Shakespeare introduces this session on conflict arising from close relationships.

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This video is from the free online course:

The Role of Personal Assistants in Disability Support

UEA (University of East Anglia)