CA psychologist Frederic Seldin Surrenders License After Patient Rejects "Romantic" Proposition

January 21, 2019

On December 6, 2018, the California Board of Psychology accepted the surrender of Frederic Seldin's license, on findings of gross negligence, repeated acts of negligence and violations of ethical standards. 

According to the Board's document, Seldin, whose practice was located in San Diego, CA, began providing couples counseling to patient T.V. and her boyfriend M.R. in December 2014. After the first meeting, T.V. began receiving both couples and individual therapy from Seldin. 

In December 2015, T.V. ended her relationship with M.R. but continued receiving counseling with Selding twice a week. During a session on December 27, 2015, Seldin is reported to have asked T.V. how she felt about him. He further stated that he was thinking about "rescuing" T.V. both professionally and personally. When she asked him to clarify what he meant, he proposed to T.V. that she forego medical school, pursue a Ph.D., and work as his trainee. He would become T.V.'s mentor and teach her how to provide therapy to patients. 

He then added that he had also been thinking about "rescuing" her personally and that he had dreamt about it, and thought about he and T.V. being together "in every way imaginable." He told her she could choose either option or a combination of the two. 

Two days later, on December 29, T.V. agreed to see Seldin for another therapy session. At that session, he asked her how she felt about the offer he'd made at the session two days earlier. T.V. requested clarification about whether Seldin was proposing that they become involved romantically.

He told her yes. 

T.V. stated to Seldin "how awful this proposal was," ended the session and left. 

Seldin emailed and texted T.V. following the session. She did not respond nor did she return for any more sessions with him. 

On January 10, 2017, he sent her an apology letter, offering her free therapy for three years. 

The Board of Psychology found that Seldin's file on T.V. did not include any documention of informed consent, treatment plans, goals, history, or treatment notes. 

Source: Decision and Order in the Matter of the First Amended Accusation Against Frederic A. Seldin, Ph.D., Psychologist License No. SY 20365, Case No. 600-2017-000228, July 9, 2019, Board of Psychology, Department of Consumer Affairs, State of California and Agreement for Surrender of License (same citation), November 21, 2018.

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