The role of emotion in group cognitive-behavioral therapy for binge eating disorder: When things have to feel worse before they get better

Louis G. Castonguay, Aaron L. Pincus, W. Stewart Agras, Charles E. Hines

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

65 Scopus citations

Abstract

The goal of this study was to investigate the client’s emotional experience in group cognitive-behavioral therapy for binge eating disorder (BED). Sixty-five individuals meeting the DSM-IV criteria for BED completed a 12-week manualized treatment conducted by experienced therapists. As predicted, the client’s emotional experience was characterized by both positive and negative emotions. Also as expected, the experience of negative emotions was most prevalent in the middle phase of therapy. The client’s emotional experience also discriminated between treatment responders and nonresponders. As predicted, the results suggest that the prevalence of positive feelings (e.g., hope, relief) and perception of positive group climates (e.g., stimulating, affectionate) was related to client change. The findings also suggest that the lack of negative feelings (e.g., worried, upset) in the beginning of treatment and, paradoxically, the perception of negative group climates (e.g., depressed, discouraged, inhibited, tense) in the middle of therapy was associated with positive treatment response.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)225-238
Number of pages14
JournalPsychotherapy Research
Volume8
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1998

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Clinical Psychology

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