Vol. 21 No. 1 (2017): Journal of Nursing Pensar Enfermagem

Therapeutic relationship and emotions: nurses emotional involvement versus detachment

Paula Diogo
Professora Adjunta; PhD, Escola Superior de Enfermagem de Lisboa

Published 2017-11-02


  • nurses,
  • nurse-patient relations,
  • emotions,
  • stress,
  • professional burnout

How to Cite

Diogo, P. (2017). Therapeutic relationship and emotions: nurses emotional involvement versus detachment. Pensar Enfermagem, 21(1), 20–30. https://doi.org/10.56732/pensarenf.v21i1.132


In the paradigm of nursing integration-interaction, nurses integrated approach of holism in their care, enhancing the emotional, social and spiritual needs cared for, and at its heart close relationships. However, relationship-centered care has raised issues related to the emotions of nurses and clientes interaction, for all the relational process is impregnated with emotions. The main objective of this conceptual reflection article is the discussion about the influence of the emotions in the relationship of nursing care, the relationship management strategies and the styles of emotional involvement /detachment adopted by the nurses in the therapeutic relationship in nursing. But it is mainly a stimulus to the scientific debate about the characteristics of the therapeutic relationship, focusing on the influence of the emotions of the protagonists of this relationship. In the scientific evidence consulted there is no consensuality about the adequacy of the emotional involvement / detachment in the therapeutic relation in nursing, being pointed several advantages and disadvantages for the nurses and for the clients. The focus of this "discussion" highlights the importance of nurses' emotional competence (emotional management skills) in complex and demanding relationships in which the client experiences an intense and disturbing emotionality associated with health-disease processes, avoiding stress and burnout in the nursing practice.


Download data is not yet available.