The Secure-Base Hypothesis: Global Attachment, Attachment to Counselor, and Session Exploration in Psychotherapy
ABSTRACT This study explored J. Bowlby's (1988) secure-base hypothesis, which predicts that a client's secure attachment to the therapist, as well as the client's and the therapist's global attachment security, will facilitate in-session exploration. Volunteer clients (N = 59) and trainee counselors (N = 59) in short-term therapy completed the Experiences in Close Relationship Scale (K. A. Brennan, C. L. Clark, & P. R. Shaver, 1998) as a measure of adult global romantic and peer attachment orientations; the Client Attachment to Therapist Scale (B. Mallinckrodt, D. L. Gantt, & H. M. Coble, 1995) as a measure of attachment to counselor; the Working Alliance Inventory (A. O. Horvath & L. Greenberg, 1989) as a measure of working alliance; and the Session Evaluation Questionnaire-Depth Subscale (W. B. Stiles & J. S. Snow, 1984) as a measure of session depth. In line with Bowlby's hypothesis, the findings suggest that session depth is related to the client's experience of attachment security with the counselor and that counselor global attachment moderates the relationship between client global attachment and session exploration. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2010 APA, all rights reserved).
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ABSTRACT: This article focuses on the future of attachment-based psychotherapy research and begins with a brief summary of the research that has been done and then explores 8 predictions for the future. The main emphasis of these predictions is the growing complexity in our research needed to capture the mechanisms that facilitate or hinder the therapy process for patients with different attachment styles. Future researchers will focus more on the interactions between the patient and therapist within the sessions, will apply more complex statistical analyses to study the dyad, and will integrate different research methods. In addition, attachment researchers will focus studies on the changing landscape of psychotherapy and explore how attachment can inform Internet-based treatments and misperceptions of attachment based on the patients' culture. All in all, attachment researchers will start to tackle the more practical issues clinicians face, and their work has the potential to significantly improve psychotherapy treatment. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).Psychotherapy Theory Research Practice Training 03/2015; 52(1):12-18. DOI:10.1037/a0036504 · 3.01 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Working alliance has been shown to be important in influencing the outcome of therapy. Research evidence suggests that characteristics of both clients and therapists impact on the development of the working alliance. Although attachment theory is well researched, there is relatively limited research on the relationship between both therapist and client attachment style and the working alliance; traditionally, research has placed greater emphasis on client characteristics. The current study examines the extent to which both client and therapist self-reported attachment styles are related to the working alliance. Thirty clients and 42 therapists were recruited from primary care psychology services. Thirty client-therapist dyads were examined. Participants completed self-report measures of anxiety and depression, attachment style and working alliance at a single time point. Client and therapist attachment security were not independently related to working alliance. However, there was a significant association between therapist insecure attachment and alliance in more symptomatic clients. There was also some evidence that therapists and clients with oppositional attachment styles reported more favourable alliances. The study suggests that the relationship between therapist attachment style and alliance is not straightforward. It is likely that the complexity of clients' presenting problems, coupled with interaction between client-therapist attachment styles, influences the therapeutic alliance. Therapist insecure attachment may negatively affect the therapeutic alliance in more symptomatic clients. It is important to consider the interaction between client and therapist attachment and how these interactions influence the therapeutic alliance. Therapists should be aware of their own personal attachment style and reflect on how this might manifest during the therapeutic process. Copyright © 2015 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.Clinical Psychology & Psychotherapy 02/2015; DOI:10.1002/cpp.1944 · 2.59 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: In diesem Beitrag werden erste Ergebnisse einer Studie zur Kompetenzentwicklung bei angehenden Psychotherapeuten in Deutschland vorgestellt. Im Speziellen wurden die aktuelle mentale Verarbeitung früher Beziehungserfahrungen und aversive frühe Kindheitserfahrungen bei 90 Ausbildungskandidaten von drei Psychotherapieverfahren zu Beginn ihrer Ausbildung untersucht. Die inneren Arbeitsmodelle von Bindung und aversive frühe Kindheitserfahrungen wurden mittels des Adult Attachment Interviews (AAI) erhoben. Die quantitative Datenauswertung wurde durch qualitative Inhaltsanalysen an 4 Interviews ergänzt, um das Verständnis für die Verarbeitung traumatischer Erlebnisse verbunden mit der Berufsmotivation explorativ zu untersuchen. Aktuell liegen Ergebnisse zu den aversiven frühen Kindheitserfahrungen für alle geführten AAIs vor. Die Analyse der AAIs in Bezug auf den Bindungsstil ergab nach bisherigen Auswertungen von 50 Interviews eine Überrepräsentanz sicherer Bindungsmuster (78 %) und somit einen deutlich höheren Anteil sicherer innerer Arbeitsmodelle im Vergleich zu Vorstudien. Psychotherapeuten in Ausbildung scheinen hinsichtlich aversiver Kindheitserfahrungen ähnlich belastet wie die Normalbevölkerung. Die qualitative Analyse lässt einen hohen Grad an selbstwirksamkeitsfördernder Parentifizierung vermuten. Die Ergebnisse werden im Zusammenhang mit vorangegangenen Eigentherapieerfahrungen, therapeutischer Schulenzugehörigkeit, Alter und Geschlecht der Ausbildungskandidaten diskutiert. Abstract In this paper first results of a study about competence development of psychotherapists in training in Germany are presented. In particular, the current mental processing of early relationship experiences and adversive childhood experiences of 90 trainees from three psychotherapies were examined at the beginning of their training. The internal working models of attachment and adversive early childhood experiences were assessed with the Adult Attachment Interview (AAI). The quantitative data analysis was supplemented by qualitative content analysis of four interviews to examine how trainees have dealt with adversive experiences and to work out if and how those are related to their decision to become psychotherapists. The AAIs analysis with respect to the attachment representation revealed by a first analysis of 50 interviews an overrepresentation of secure attachment patterns (78 %) and thus a significantly higher proportion of secure internal working models in comparison to former studies. Psychotherapists in training seem as burdened as the general population in terms of adversive childhood experiences. The qualitative analysis suggests a high degree of self-efficacy-enhancing parentification. The results are discussed in relation to previous psychotherapy experience, therapeutic school, age and sex of trainees.Psychotherapie Forum 03/2014; 19(1):2-12. DOI:10.1007/s00729-014-0005-4