Therapist interpretation, patient-therapist interpersonal process, and outcome in psychodynamic psychotherapy for avoidant personality disorder

Alexander J. Schut, Louis G. Castonguay, Kelly M. Flanagan, Alissa S. Yamasaki, Jacques P. Barber, Jamie D. Bedics, Tracey L. Smith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

30 Scopus citations

Abstract

The authors examined the link between interpretive techniques, the therapeutic relationship, and outcome in psychodynamic psychotherapy. Two independent teams of judges each coded one early session from patients diagnosed with avoidant personality disorder. Results revealed (a) an inverse association between concentration of interpretation and favorable patient outcome; (b) that small amounts of disaffiliative patient-therapist transactions before, during, and after interpretations were reliably or meaningfully associated with negative patient change; and (c) concentration of interpretation was positively associated with disaffiliative therapy process before and during interpretation and negatively associated with affiliative patient responses to interpretation. The results suggest that therapists who persisted with interpretations had more hostile interactions with patients and had patients who reacted with less warmth than therapists who used interpretations more judiciously.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)494-511
Number of pages18
JournalPsychotherapy
Volume42
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2005

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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