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A Preliminary Survey of Counseling Psychologists' Personal Experiences with Depression and Treatment

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Abstract

The fact that psychologists may not realize how much their own diagnosable emotional problems can impact their practices led to the undertaking of an exploratory survey of practicing psychologists in order to assess that notion. The results of a random sample of 1,000 psychologists indicate that women were more frequent respondents than men by a ratio of 3 to 2 and that depression (dysthymia) was the most frequently acknowledged diagnosis. Respondents felt that their emotional issues gave them more empathy for their clients; however, they also experienced an increased sense of isolation from their colleagues and lessened energy and ability to concentrate in their relationships with their clients. Recommendations are offered for self-care practices for psychologists. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)

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... Stigma affects not only the general population but also mental health professionals who are vulnerable to burnout (21,22), mental illness, such as depression (23,24), and suicidal behavior (25). Professionals' mental health knowledge does not make them immune to such conditions (26,27). ...
... Delaying seeking help can have a detrimental effect on mental health and increase the risk for suicidal behavior. For example, studies have found that 61-82% of psychologists had a lifetime prevalence of depressive symptoms (23,24,33) and 42% experienced anxiety (33). Pope and Tabachnick (23) found that 29% of therapists had suicidal ideation, and 4% had attempted suicide. ...
... In addition, we can only hypothesize about the mental health conditions and stigma among professionals who chose not to participate in the study. Several previous studies (23,24,33) have found a higher proportion of mental health professionals with experience of mental health problems than in our study. Because our sample was composed of mental health professionals and other professional profiles working in the field of suicide prevention, it is important to further explore the prevalence of mental health problems among suicidologists as a specific group of mental health experts. ...
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Background Stigma about mental illness—both public and self—is one of the most important factors hindering help-seeking. Stigma can occur during an acute episode of mental illness or be anticipatory. One group affected by stigma, but often neglected, is mental health professionals. This study examined the anticipated form of mental-illness and help-seeking self-stigma and the anticipated form of public stigma of suicidal behavior among members of the International Association for Suicide Prevention. We hypothesized that suicidologists with a history of suicidality or mental illness would anticipate greater stigma from the public and self.Methods The study received ethical approval from the Commission for Medical Ethics of the Republic of Slovenia. Data from 83 participants who completed an online survey (February to May 2020) with informed consent were analyzed using path analysis. We tested a model predicting help-seeking self-stigma based on (i) personal experience of mental illness using anticipated self-stigma of mental illness as a mediating variable and (ii) history of suicidal behavior using anticipated public stigma of suicidal behavior as a mediating variable.ResultsPersonal experience of mental illness predicted anticipation of self-stigma of mental illness (β = 0.26). History of suicidality predicted anticipation of public stigma of suicidal behavior (β = 0.29). Anticipated self-stigma of mental illness proved to be a stronger predictor of help-seeking self-stigma (β = 0.40) than anticipated public stigma of suicidal behavior (β = 0.07).Conclusions It is important to intentionally support the mental health of suicide prevention professionals, as they are not immune to mental illness or various types of stigma. Because our sample was small and diverse, further research to better understand stigma concepts in this population is warranted.
... In addition, mental health professionals who have their own mental illness have reported experiences of stigmatization from colleagues (Knaak et al., 2017;Zeruvabel & Wright, 2012;Cain, 2000). This is considering that studies have estimated 60-70 percent of psychologists have experienced some mental illness -in most cases mild to moderate depression -in their lifetime (Pope & Tabachnick, 1994;Gilroy, Murra, & Carroll, 2002;Tay, Alcock, & Scior, 2018). That said, far fewer psychologists (about 10 percent or less) reported having what might be categorized as severe mental illness, including severe depression, psychosis, bipolar disorder, more than passive suicidal ideation, or any mental illness that resulted in hospitalization (Pope & Tabachnick, 1994;Gilroy, Murra, & Carroll, 2002;Tay, Alcock, & Scior, 2018). ...
... This is considering that studies have estimated 60-70 percent of psychologists have experienced some mental illness -in most cases mild to moderate depression -in their lifetime (Pope & Tabachnick, 1994;Gilroy, Murra, & Carroll, 2002;Tay, Alcock, & Scior, 2018). That said, far fewer psychologists (about 10 percent or less) reported having what might be categorized as severe mental illness, including severe depression, psychosis, bipolar disorder, more than passive suicidal ideation, or any mental illness that resulted in hospitalization (Pope & Tabachnick, 1994;Gilroy, Murra, & Carroll, 2002;Tay, Alcock, & Scior, 2018). As far as this author knows, this paradoxical relationship between psychologists' own mental illness and their stigmatizing attitudes toward others with mental illness has not been explained in the literature. ...
... Interestingly, the most commonly reported negative impact on the psychologists' collegial relationships was a sense of withdrawal and isolation from colleagues while being depressed. The experiences of psychologists with depression reflects a typical occurrence for those with depression; people with depression in general often deal with negative attitudes, rejection, and devaluation from others including psychotherapists (Gilroy, Murra, & Carroll, 2002). ...
Thesis
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This was the first study in 18 years to assess licensed psychologists in the United States for their own mental illness and mental health treatment history. It is the only known study linking U.S. psychologists’ own mental health to stigmatizing attitudes toward people with mental illness. The primary hypothesis, based on Allport’s contact hypothesis and Pettigrew’s intergroup contact theory, that increased levels of contact with people with mental illness would predict lower levels of stigma, was not supported. Instead a complex relationship between psychologists’ own mental illness, current psychological distress, and mental health stigma emerged. Despite the past finding that psychologists with their own experiences of mental illness and adversity experience stigma from other psychologists, in the present study the majority of the 143 participants reported personal experience with mental illness. In fact, 73% reported experiencing a mental illness and 76% reported having sought treatment for a mental illness in their lifetimes – findings similar to past studies. In contrast, over 75% scored in the nonclinical range on current psychological distress. Despite past life experiences, when psychologists had higher levels of psychological distress their self-stigmas of seeking help and mental illness increased and they identified less with other psychologists. Furthermore, the less psychologists identified with people with mental illness the more they personally endorsed stigma against people with mental illness. I suggest that, instead of stigmatizing psychologists with past and current mental illness, we as psychologists instead strive for openness and support in order to encourage growth and resiliency among colleagues.
... with mental health concerns, such as depression, may have a negative impact on therapists' work, such as negatively affecting their ability to concentrate in therapeutic relationships (e.g., Gilroy, Carroll, & Murra, 2001;Gilroy et al., 2002). Research also suggests that personal psychotherapy may result in greater personal distress while in training (Kumari, 2011). ...
... We hypothesized that the majority of faculty participants would recommend that students not disclose either type of history. However, given the fact that more mental health professionals endorse previous psychotherapy use than a history of depression (Bike et al., 2009;Boyd et al., 2016;Gilroy et al., 2002), we hypothesized that faculty would be more likely to recommend disclosing psychotherapy use than a history of depression. ...
... Last, in the YES depression/YES psychotherapy condition, the applicant described having experienced depression in the past and having sought psychotherapy to work through it. A history of depression was chosen for the applicant given that depression is the most frequently endorsed mental health disorder for professionals in the field (e.g., Bike et al., 2009;Gilroy et al., 2002). ...
... This guidance reflects the research literature showing that the majority of practitioners face personal and professional challenges to their wellness, such as depression, personal or family illness, relationship issues, financial issues, emotional exhaustion, compassion fatigue, secondary traumatic stress, and burnout (Cummins, Massey, & Jones, 2007;Deutsch, 1985;Norcross & Prochaska, 1986). Of particular relevance study, the personal problems of the practitioner may significantly influence the quality of the services they provide (Gilroy, Carroll, & Murra, 2002;Guy, Poelstra, & Stark, 1989;Sherman & Thelen, 1998). A survey of clinical psychologists identified that 60% of respondents acknowledged having worked when too distressed to be effective (Pope, Tabachnick, & Keith-Spiegel, 1987). ...
... A survey of clinical psychologists identified that 60% of respondents acknowledged having worked when too distressed to be effective (Pope, Tabachnick, & Keith-Spiegel, 1987). Similarly, Gilroy et al. (2002) found that depressed counseling psychologists reported they had reduced energy, were more distracted, had less patience and confidence, and decreased emotional availability for their clinical work. ...
... The results support the finding that the personal problems of counselors influence the quality of the counseling services offered (Gilroy et al., 2002;Guy et al., 1989;Sherman & Thelen, 1998). Participants found their unemployment experiences to be professionally debilitating, that they were at times not engaged with or under involved with clients, while at other times they could be over involved and enmeshed with their clients. ...
Article
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Many person-centered therapists provide their services on a voluntary basis wishing to enrich and expand their experiences as individuals and counselors. However, while rewarding, volunteers may also be affected by the difficulties of long-term unemployment. In this study, nine volunteer person-centered counselors in Greece aged 22–65, holding a Diploma in person-centered counseling, were interviewed. Participants were asked about how their experiences of not finding paid work might be affecting both themselves and their client work. The results indicated that long-term unemployment substantially reduces the counselors’ belief in their knowledge, skills, and counseling abilities while at the same time introducing doubts about their choice of profession, and even the very nature of the person-centered counseling process.
... Like burnout, depression is highly prevalent among psychologists. A study of 425 psychologists found 62% identified as being depressed (Gilroy et al., 2002). Pope and Tabachnick (1994) reported that 61% from a sample of 476 psychologists had experienced symptoms of clinical depression. ...
... Personal burnout is particularly problematic as it is associated with increased cynicism and depersonalisation (Maslach, 2003), which can lead to the psychologist distancing emotionally and mentally from their work and clients (Maslach & Jackson, 1981) and in turn compromising client progress (Bearse et al., 2013). Depression in psychologists is linked to an increased sense of isolation and withdrawal from colleagues, whilst associated symptoms such as reduced energy and concentration can detrimentally impact clinical delivery (Gilroy et al., 2002). What may be underlying findings of elevated burnout and depression extends beyond the scope of this study and further research is required to ascertain causal factors. ...
... A qualitative study of Australian psychologists identified barriers as difficulties accessing support and stigma (Turnbull & Rhodes, 2019). Help-seeking barriers identified by other studies were time constraints, inadequate education, financial costs, the client's needs being perceived as more important than the therapist's, and confidentiality (Barnard & Curry, 2011;Bearse et al., 2013;Gilroy et al., 2002;Hammond et al., 2018;Turnbull & Rhodes, 2019). ...
Article
Objective: The primary aim of this research was to explore the relationship between burnout and depression among Australian psychologists, and to investigate the role of self-compassion in this relationship. Method: A sample of 248 psychologists (average 41 years old; 81.1% female) currently working in Australia completed an on-line survey including measures of burnout (Copenhagen Burnout Inventory), depression (Depression Anxiety Stress Scale), and self-compassion (Self-Compassion Scale – Short Form). Results: In total 69 psychologists (27.8%) met criteria for burnout, while 42 (16.9%) reported at least mild depressive symptoms. Burnout and depression were significantly associated with each other (r = .44), while negative medium associations were found between self-compassion and burnout and depression (r = .48), respectively. A hierarchical regression analysis revealed self-compassion moderated the relationship between burnout and depression; psychologists with high levels of burnout and low to moderate levels of self-compassion reported significantly higher levels of depressive symptoms. Conclusions: The current results indicate that self-compassion may act as a protective factor against the effects of depression and burnout. Given elevated burnout and depressive symptoms reported by Australian psychologists, the development and promotion of self-compassion focused self-care practices for psychologists may be beneficial and warrants further research. KEY POINTS What is already known about this topic: • Burnout and depression are highly prevalent among psychologists. • Self-compassion is associated with enhanced psychological health and well-being. • Self-compassion can buffer against negative states. What this topic adds: • Psychologists who are more self-compassionate experience lower levels of burnout and depressive symptoms. • For psychologists with high levels of burnout, the practice of self-compassion can significantly lower the severity of depressive symptoms experienced. Self-compassion may be a useful self-care tool to reduce psychological distress.
... This compares with a 43% lifetime prevalence of mental health problems in the general adult population in the UK (Mental Health Foundation, 2016). Furthermore, in a survey of 425 counselling psychologists in the USA (Gilroy et al., 2002), 62% self-identified as depressed, and in another USA survey of psychologists (American Psychological Association, 2010), 18% of 602 respondents reported they had had suicidal ideation while dealing with personal and professional stressors or challenges. In a recent systematic review involving 8808 therapists, primarily psychologists, the prevalence of moderate to high work-related stress and burn-out was 55% (Simionato and Simpson, 2018). ...
... In a recent systematic review involving 8808 therapists, primarily psychologists, the prevalence of moderate to high work-related stress and burn-out was 55% (Simionato and Simpson, 2018). Mental health problems in therapists may have a negative impact on therapist effectiveness, including an inability to maintain focus with patients, memory problems, fatigue, and lack of energy and motivation for therapeutic work, which can lead to boundary and other ethical violations (American Psychological Association, 2010; Gilroy et al., 2002). Several factors have been suggested as contributing to mental health problems in therapists working in psychiatric health care services. ...
Article
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Mental health problems are prevalent among therapists and may have a negative impact on therapist effectiveness. To counteract such problems, therapist self-care (for example, striking a balance between personal and professional demands and seeking personal therapy), has received increased attention. Conceptually, self-care can be considered as part of a personal practice model, focusing on techniques that therapists engage with self-experientially with a focus on their personal and/or professional development. However, studies of the self-application of specific treatment techniques are lacking. We aimed to explore the use, and perceived usefulness, of cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) techniques for self-care to prevent or treat own mental health problems among practising therapists. Participants were therapists ( n = 228) of various professional backgrounds in Sweden. Data were collected using a web-based survey. Descriptive statistics were calculated, and non-parametric analyses conducted to investigate associations of 13 CBT techniques with therapist characteristics. Use of CBT techniques for self-care was highly prevalent among participants, and they perceived the techniques as useful, irrespective of characteristics such as gender, age, profession, years since graduation, clinical experience, level of training in CBT, and previous experience of personal CBT. The high prevalence among therapists of the use of treatment techniques for self-care is very encouraging. Therapist self-care, including the self-application of treatment techniques, may be an important factor for therapist effectiveness, which calls for further development of personal practice models with respect to self-care, and future studies investigating associations between therapist mental health, self-care, effectiveness and patient outcome. Key learning aims (1) Therapist self-care using cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) techniques to prevent or treat own mental health problems may influence therapist effectiveness. However, studies of self-application of treatment techniques are lacking. (2) In the present survey study, the use of CBT techniques for self-care was highly prevalent among practising therapists, and they perceived the techniques as useful, irrespective of characteristics such as gender, age, profession, years since graduation, clinical experience, level of training in CBT, and previous experience of personal CBT. (3) Almost all therapists believed that it was a good idea to self-apply CBT techniques for their own sake and for the benefit of their patients.
... Self-awareness and actively working on one's own recovery, either individually or in therapy, may put therapists in a better position to understand their clients' experiences and promote their healing (Hayes, 2002). Mental health professionals themselves report that their lived experience makes them more empathic (Boyd, Zeiss, et al., 2016;Gilroy, Carroll, & Murra, 2002) and is a driving force behind their passion to help others (Alexander, Diefenbeck, & Brown, 2015). ...
... At the same time, mental illness on the part of mental health professionals can interfere with their ability to practice psychotherapy, such as by interrupting their ability to concentrate (Gilroy et al., 2002), or leading to problematic experiences of countertransference (Gelso & Hayes, 2007). Vicarious traumatization and secondary traumatic stress impact therapists who treat trauma survivors (Newell & MacNeil, 2010) and may be particularly vivid among therapists with trauma histories of their own. ...
Article
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The purpose of this study is to explore the experiences of mental health professionals who self-identify as having a mental illness by analyzing how they describe their experiences in their own words. Twelve therapists volunteered to be interviewed for a larger study of working professionals living with mental illness that focused on perceived prejudice and discrimination in the workplace, revealing versus concealing one's mental illness on the job, and how having a mental illness impacts one's identity as a professional. This article reports on how these themes relate to practicing psychotherapists who are typically careful about with whom they share their mental health information. The results highlight that expressions of prejudice toward people with mental illnesses were commonplace among these mental health professionals and may contribute to an inclination among therapists to reveal their mental health history selectively, if at all, on the job. When it comes to sharing with clients, therapists tended to be thoughtful and deliberate about self-disclosure, only using it when they believed it would be beneficial to the client rather than to themselves. Regardless of whether they shared with clients, most of the therapists emphasized that having direct experience with mental illness enhanced their capacity to empathize with their clients, although sometimes empathy could trigger their own symptoms. The implications of these results for psychotherapists are discussed, including how psychotherapists with mental illness should care for themselves and how psychotherapists without mental illness can be more sensitive to their colleagues. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2020 APA, all rights reserved).
... For instance, in a large survey of psychologists, over 80% reported having received psychotherapy at some point, and almost 30% reported having felt suicidal at some point during therapy (Pope & Tabachnick, 1994). In a more recent study of counselling psychologists, over 60% reported experiencing depression during their time providing clinical services, and 42% of those who sought treatment for mental health concerns reported some experience of suicidal thoughts or behavior (Gilroy, Carroll, & Murra, 2002). Further research is needed to clarify the extent to which psychologists have lived experience of NSSI, and how these experiences might impact professional practice in research and clinical domains. ...
... Although specific prevalence rates of NSSI among psychologists have not been documented, there is no reason to expect NSSI to be any less prevalent than other mental health concerns, which are common among psychologists (see Gilroy, Carroll, & Murra, 2002, Pope & Tabachnick, 1994. Second, NSSI is unique amongst psychological difficulties, which are typically considered concealable stigmatized identities (Bos, Kanner, Muris, Janssen, & Mayer, 2009), in that scarring is common, making an otherwise invisible identity apparent (Lewis, 2016a;Lewis & Mehrabkhani, 2015). ...
Article
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The science and practice of psychology are improved by fostering an inclusive environment for professionals with lived experience of mental illness, sometimes referred to as "prosumers". Non-suicidal self-injury (NSSI) is an increasingly prevalent behavior that occurs across the spectra of mental disorders, and that is associated with greater stigma than many other mental health concerns. Further, individuals with lived experience of NSSI may face unique challenges, for instance, due to the visible nature of NSSI scarring. In this commentary, we describe the negative consequences associated with stigmatizing and excluding people with lived experience of NSSI from the profession of psychology, both for impacted individuals and for the field as a whole. We then provide recommendations to individuals with and without lived experience of NSSI to facilitate inclusion of people with lived experience of NSSI in clinical, research, teaching, and leadership domains. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2021 APA, all rights reserved).
... A key feature of the crisis support service model is empathic engagement with callers to foster a connection that will provide emotional support and facilitate the help seeking experience. However, empathic engagement with others who are highly distressed and suicidal can lead helpers to experience elevated symptoms of psychological distress [9][10][11][12], help-negation [13][14][15][16], functional impairment [17,18] and to deliver sub-optimal care to patients [19][20][21]. To date, research has focused on helpers in registered professional roles (e.g., mental health and medical professionals), suggesting that the impact of frequent empathic engagement with distressed others on workers performing non-professional roles, including telephone crisis support workers, may have been overlooked. ...
... Research has identified a number of personal and shift factors which increase helpers' risk for distress. Personal risk factors include younger age [16,38,39], female sex [9,16,39,40,41], regional/rural location [42,43], lower levels of educational attainment [11] and experience in helping roles [11,28,44,45], lived experience of mental health issues and suicide [38], and self-rather than other-oriented motivations for helping [46]. Together with their frequent engagement with highly distressed callers [4,5,8], these factors may increase telephone crisis support workers' vulnerability to personal distress. ...
Article
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Research suggests that frequent empathic engagement with others in distress places helpers in registered professional roles (e.g. medical practitioners, psychologists) at risk of functional impairment related to symptoms of psychological distress, including the delivery of sub-optimal care to patients. Preliminary research suggests that telephone crisis support workers may also be impacted in a similar way. This repeated measures study is the first known research to examine telephone crisis support workers’ functional impairment related to symptoms of psychological distress before and after speaking with callers in crisis. A representative sample of telephone crisis support workers from Lifeline Australia participated by completing three surveys: 1) directly before; 2) directly after; and 3) one week after completing a shift on the national crisis line. Surveys included standardised measures of functional impairment, psychological distress, lived experience of mental health issues and suicide, motivations for volunteering, coping strategies and help-seeking. Categorical items were used to assess personal and shift-related factors. Repeated measures analyses of variance were used to identify changes in symptoms of psychological distress and impairment across time points. Structural equation modelling was used to test relationships within a hypothesised model of impairment. A significant proportion of participants reported functional impairment related to symptoms of psychological distress. Significant differences in functional impairment and symptoms of psychological distress were detected, and were associated with different mechanisms, across time points. An important outcome of this study is empirically-supported models which explain how telephone crisis support workers come to experience functional impairment in relation to their TCS role, as well as other work/study, home/family and social/leisure activities. Results warrant the deliberate development and/or modification of existing service strategies to optimise telephone crisis support workers’ psychological wellbeing and functioning, including by structuring the work environment and emphasising certain messages during training and supervision.
... Unfortunately, little data were obtained on the types of mental health difficulties (if any) that led to therapy attendance. Likewise, in a U.S. sample of practicing counseling psychologists (N = 425), 60% reported major depression, but other types of mental disorders were not assessed (Gilroy et al., 2002). In perhaps the largest survey of American psychologists' experiences with psychotherapy, conducted over twenty-five years ago (N = 476;Pope & Tabachnick, 1994), 84% of respondents reported having attended therapy as a client, most commonly for self-reported depression. ...
... Indeed, one key strength of this project was the ability to differentiate between individuals who reported mental health difficulties, broadly defined, and those who had been diagnosed with a mental disorder by a professional. To our knowledge, prior survey research in this area has exclusively relied on self-reported mental health difficulties, without asking about formal diagnoses (Gilroy et al., 2002;Grice et al., 2018;Pope & Tabachnick, 1994;Tay et al., 2018). This approach has several benefits, as a large proportion of people with diagnosable mental disorders do not receive treatment or a formal diagnosis (Wang et al., 2005). ...
Preprint
How common is mental illness among applied psychologists? This question is paradoxically neglected, perhaps because disclosure and discussion of lived mental health difficulties remains taboo within the field. This study documented high rates of current and lifetime mental health difficulties and diagnoses (MHDD) among faculty, graduate students, and others affiliated with accredited doctoral and internship programs in clinical, counseling, and school psychology. Over 80% of respondents (N = 1,395 of 1,692) reported lifetime mental health difficulties, and nearly half reported a formal mental health diagnosis. The most commonly reported lifetime MHDD were depression (over 55%), generalized anxiety disorder (over 50%), and suicidal thoughts or behaviors (over 40%), while bipolar (< 2%) and psychotic disorders (< 1%) were among the least reported. Most respondents with MHDD (90%) reported mild or no impairment in professional domains due to MHDD. Graduate students were more likely to endorse MHDD than faculty and were more likely to report professional impairment. Overall, lifetime rates of psychopathology within clinical, counseling, and school psychology faculty and trainees were similar to or greater than those observed in the general population. We discuss the implications of these results and suggest specific directions for future research on this heretofore neglected topic.
... Unfortunately, little data were obtained on the types of mental health difficulties (if any) that led to therapy attendance. Likewise, in a U.S. sample of practicing counseling psychologists (N = 425), 60% reported major depression, but other types of mental disorders were not assessed (Gilroy et al., 2002). In perhaps the largest survey of American psychologists' experiences with psychotherapy, conducted over twenty-five years ago (N = 476;Pope & Tabachnick, 1994), 84% of respondents reported having attended therapy as a client, most commonly for self-reported depression. ...
... Indeed, one key strength of this project was the ability to differentiate between individuals who reported mental health difficulties, broadly defined, and those who had been diagnosed with a mental disorder by a professional. To our knowledge, prior survey research in this area has exclusively relied on self-reported mental health difficulties, without asking about formal diagnoses (Gilroy et al., 2002;Grice et al., 2018;Pope & Tabachnick, 1994;Tay et al., 2018). This approach has several benefits, as a large proportion of people with diagnosable mental disorders do not receive treatment or a formal diagnosis (Wang et al., 2005). ...
Preprint
Full-text available
How common is mental illness among applied psychologists? This question is paradoxically neglected, perhaps because disclosure and discussion of lived mental health difficulties remains taboo within the field. This study documented high rates of current and lifetime mental health difficulties and diagnoses (MHDD) among faculty, graduate students, and others affiliated with accredited doctoral and internship programs in clinical, counseling, and school psychology. Over 80% of respondents (N = 1,395 of 1,692) reported lifetime mental health difficulties, and nearly half reported a formal mental health diagnosis. The most commonly reported lifetime MHDD were depression (over 55%), generalized anxiety disorder (over 50%), and suicidal thoughts or behaviors (over 40%), while bipolar (< 2%) and psychotic disorders (< 1%) were among the least reported. Most respondents with MHDD (90%) reported mild or no impairment in professional domains due to MHDD. Graduate students were more likely to endorse MHDD than faculty and were more likely to report professional impairment. Overall, lifetime rates of psychopathology within clinical, counseling, and school psychology faculty and trainees were similar to or greater than those observed in the general population. We discuss the implications of these results and suggest specific directions for future research on this heretofore neglected topic.
... Later on, Pope and Tabachnick (1994) conducted a similar survey, with 29% of psychologists reporting they had been suicidal before and 4% of psychologists reporting a non-fatal suicide attempt previously. Likewise, Gilroy, Carroll, & Murra (2002) surveyed a large group of psychologists and revealed that 62% of respondents self-identified as depressed and 42% of those reported experiencing some form of suicidal ideation or behavior. Finally, in a 2009 APA Colleague Assistance and Wellness Survey, 18% of MHPs acknowledged they had suffered from suicidal ideation while dealing with personal and professional stressors or challenges (American Psychological Association, 2010). ...
... Most MHPs deal with suicidality frequently; 30-80% of clinicians have lost one or more clients to suicide-and suicidality of patients, depending on the work setting, can be a daily, weekly, or monthly occurrence (Finlayson & Simmonds, 2018;Grad et al., 1997;Greenberg & Shefler, 2014;Landers et al., 2010;Rothes et al., 2013). Moreover, many MHPs have also been confronted with suicidality within a personal context, struggling with suicidality themselves, or through friends or relatives who have a history of suicidality (Gilroy et al., 2002;Pope & Tabachnick, 1994;Swain & Domino, 1985). In addition, Swain and Domino revealed that MHPs with lived experience, albeit related to themselves or friend/relatives, were more accepting of suicidality and better able to recognize signs of suicidality (1985). ...
Article
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Objective Client suicide, used to refer to situations where a mental health practitioner (MHP) is exposed, affected, or bereaved by a client’s suicide, is known to have a profound impact on MHPs. The current study investigated (1) the short- and long-term impact of client suicide and (2) to what extent gender, years of experience, therapeutic background, and exposure to suicidality predicted impact. Methods An international sample of 213 mental health practitioners completed an online survey on the impact of client suicide. Results and Conclusion Overall, results indicate MHPs are significantly affected by client suicide. A two-factor model in which impact of client suicide was predicted by two latent variables, MHP Characteristics and Exposure to Suicidality, explained 43% of short-term, 69% of long-term emotional, and 60% of long-term professional impact. Whereas MHP characteristics did not significantly predict any of the three impact variables (ps >.05), Exposure to Suicidality significantly predicted all three outcome variables (ps <.001). Interestingly, lived experience or exposure to suicidality of friends/family members predicted more impact, while exposure to suicidality at work predicted less impact of client suicide. Implications for both research and clinical practice are discussed. • HIGHLIGHTS • MHPs are significantly affected by client suicide; • Previous exposure to suicidality predicts the impact of client suicide; • MHP characteristics do not predict the impact of client suicide.
... It has been speculated that "if therapists did not believe that they themselves can benefit from the therapeutic tools of their profession, they have no business practicing them on others" (Williams, Coyle, & Lyons, 1999, p. 554). As Gilroy, Carroll, and Murra (2002) found in their study of female psychologists who have dealt with depression, "greater faith in the therapeutic process" (p. 403) ranked among enhanced empathy, more patience and tolerance when progress is slow, and increased sensitivity to the hard work of therapy, as the ways personal therapy had a positive professional impact on them. ...
... A 20-question survey was constructed using questions and findings adapted from Gilroy, Carroll, and Murra (2002) and Dearing, Maddux, and Tangney (2005). As neither of the surveys were included in their respective published articles, they were used with permission of the authors. ...
... Pope and Tabachnick (1994) found, in a sample of 800 clinical psychologists from the 42nd Division of the APA (Psychologists in Independent Practice), that 61% had experienced at least one episode of clinical depression; 29% reported suicidal thoughts, and 4% had committed self-harm. In this vein, Gilroy et al. (2002) identified that 62% of psychologists from Division 17 (Counseling) identified themselves as depressed, with 42% describing suicidal thoughts or behaviors. More recently, the British Psychological Society (2019) reported that 40% of NHS psychotherapists informed feeling depressed. ...
... However, its vague operationalization has hampered it empirical study • Although most of professionals providing psychological services do not experience significant stress associated with providing psychological services, some of them develop clinically significant symptoms • There is a remarkable lack of studies focused on the impact of delivering psychological services in psychologists • It is necessary to define precisely and delimit properly the constructs CF, VT, and ST before developing more research since without a shared framework results are inconsistent and ambiguous happens with CS, other positive work outcomes such as shared resilience may have a buffering effect, leading to minor impact. As an example, in the case of psychologists and psychotherapists, CS and PTG have been linked to the professional's own mental issues ( Cvetovac & Adame, 2017;Gilroy et al., 2002;Kaur, 2017), which could be associated with the variable "previous history of trauma" that was frequently reported in the studies analyzed in this review. The experience of psychological issues or traumas in professionals has been explored under the denomination of the "wounded healer" (Gelso & Hayes, 2007). ...
Article
Over the past decades, a growing interest has emerged toward understanding the impact that the exposure to human suffering produces in mental health professionals, leading to the identification of three constructs: vicarious traumatization (VT), compassion fatigue (CF), and secondary trauma (ST). However, little is known about how these conditions affect psychologists. A systematic review and a meta-analysis were conducted to examine the evidence about the effects of occupational exposure to trauma and suffering in studies that included psychologists among their samples. Fifty-two studies were included comprising 10,233 participants. Overall, the results showed that most professionals did not experience relevant distress due to their work, yet some of them developed clinically significant symptoms (i.e., PTSD). However, solid conclusions could not be drawn due to the numerous methodological difficulties found in this research field (i.e., group heterogeneity, lack of comparison groups, and conceptual overlap). Thus, it is necessary to further investigate this topic with scientific rigor to understand these stressors and develop evidence-based interventions.
... It is reasonable to consider that people who show an interest in topics related to psychology are often dealing with psychological issues themselves, which they may hope to understand better through their participation in mental health work. Several studies, for instance, show that psychology students and practitioners experience high levels of anxiety, depression, and/or even suicidal ideation (Gilroy, Carroll, & Murra, 2002;Kleespies et al., 2011). Other research suggests that mental health workers are significantly more likely to have experienced psychological distress and dysfunctional dynamics in their childhood, including childhood trauma, than other professionals (Elliott & Guy, 1993). ...
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Youth suicide is a public health problem in India, and young people in school, particularly adolescents, experience heavy psychological burden. Prevention programs, involving peer educators (PEs), have proved useful strategies to address this problem, but their impact on the PEs is less understood, particularly in India. This qualitative study aims to explore the changes observed in PE students who were involved in a ‘mindfulness’ and ‘Support-Appreciate-Listen–Team’ (SALT)-based peer education program to address suicidal behavior in Indian school students. One hundred and fourteen students were trained as PEs in six high schools in Pune to identify and respond to the needs of students in distress. By listening to the narratives of the PEs, their parents, school authorities, and the associated NGO team, we reflect on perceived social, emotional, behavioral, and cognitive changes in PEs. The PEs demonstrated enhanced caring for those in distress both inside and outside school by improved listening skills, self-awareness, care, and empathy. Furthermore, the program had a positive impact on their broad emotional intelligence and PEs expressed increased ownership of life, taking action, and seeking support where needed. The study concludes that mindfulness and SALT-based peer education (PE) programs are valuable for the PEs. This could be used to motivate PEs to volunteer in such programs. Other results are discussed and further research areas are suggested.
... It is reasonable to consider that people who show an interest in topics related to psychology are often dealing with psychological issues themselves, which they may hope to understand better through their participation in mental health work. Several studies, for instance, show that psychology students and practitioners experience high levels of anxiety, depression, and/or even suicidal ideation (Gilroy, Carroll, & Murra, 2002;Kleespies et al., 2011). Other research suggests that mental health workers are significantly more likely to have experienced psychological distress and dysfunctional dynamics in their childhood, including childhood trauma, than other professionals (Elliott & Guy, 1993). ...
Article
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Youth suicide is a public health problem in India, and young people in school, particularly adolescents, experience heavy psychological burden. Prevention programs, involving peer educators (PEs), have proved useful strategies to address this problem, but their impact on the PEs is less understood, particularly in India. This qualitative study aims to explore the changes observed in PE students who were involved in a ‘mindfulness’ and ‘Support-Appreciate-Listen–Team’ (SALT)-based peer education program to address suicidal behavior in Indian school students. One hundred and fourteen students were trained as PEs in six high schools in Pune to identify and respond to the needs of students in distress. By listening to the narratives of the PEs, their parents, school authorities, and the associated NGO team, we reflect on perceived social, emotional, behavioral, and cognitive changes in PEs. The PEs demonstrated enhanced caring for those in distress both inside and outside school by improved listening skills, self-awareness, care, and empathy. Furthermore, the program had a positive impact on their broad emotional intelligence and PEs expressed increased ownership of life, taking action, and seeking support where needed. The study concludes that mindfulness and SALT-based peer education (PE) programs are valuable for the PEs. This could be used to motivate PEs to volunteer in such programs. Other results are discussed and further research areas are suggested.
... Psychologists and allied mental health professionals are also subject to a number of work related health impairments, including compassion fatigue (Figley, 2002) secondary traumatization (Canfield, 2005) and vicarious traumatization (Dunkley and Whelan, 2006). Burnout, itself has been associated with depression both within the field of psychology (Pope and Tabachnick, 1994;Gilroy et al., 2002) and within other professions (Hakanen and Schaufeli, 2012). It has also been shown to mediate between stress and depression (Ahola et al., 2009), with clinicians also report lower feelings of safety with increased emotional exhaustion (Welp et al., 2015). ...
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Purpose: Burnout has been shown to develop due to chronic stress or distress, which has negative implications for both physical and mental health and well-being. Burnout research originated in the “caring-professions.” However, there is a paucity of research which has focused specifically on how job demands, resources and personal characteristics affect burnout among practitioner psychologists. Methods: This PRISMA review (Moher et al., 2009) involved searches of key databases (i.e., Web of Knowledge, SCOPUS and Google Scholar) for articles published prior to 1st January, 2017. Articles concerning the prevalence and cause(s) of burnout in applied psychologists, that were published in the English language were included. Both quantitative and qualitative investigative studies were included in the review. The Crowe Critical Appraisal Tool (CCAT; Crowe, 2013) was used to appraise the quality of each paper included in this review. An inductive content analysis approach (Thomas, 2006) was subsequently conducted in order to identify the developing themes from the data. Results: The systematic review comprised 29 papers. The most commonly cited dimension of burnout by applied psychologists was emotional exhaustion (34.48% of papers). Atheoretical approaches were common among the published articles on burnout among applied psychologists. Workload and work setting are the most common job demands and factors that contribute to burnout among applied psychologists, with the resources and personal characteristics of research are age and experience, and sex the most commonly focused upon within the literature. Conclusions: The results of the current review offers evidence that burnout is a concern for those working in the delivery of psychological interventions. Emotional exhaustion is the most commonly reported dimension of burnout, with job and personal characteristics and resources also playing important roles in the development of burnout in the mental health care profession. Finally, tentative recommendations for those within the field of applied psychology.
... Some reasons depressed psychologists did not seek counseling included believing that symptoms of mental distress would go away naturally, utilizing alternative coping mechanisms, not finding a nearby therapist deemed acceptable, not being able to find a therapist the psychologist did not already know, having concerns about confidentiality, being worried they would be censured if others found out, not having enough energy to seek therapy, finding the cost too high, not getting support from one's significant other, believing that counseling would not be helpful, and not being willing to admit to the seriousness of their problems (Gilroy, Carroll, & Murra, 2002). Authors of a more recent study of psychologists found that difficulty finding an acceptable therapist, lack of time, and financial concerns, were the most highly rated reasons for not seeking counseling (Bearse et al., 2013). ...
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The authors tested the hypothesized model fit between the three-dimensional factor structure of the revised Fit, Stigma, and Value (FSV) scale, a screening tool for appraising barriers to attendance in counseling, with a national sample of 369 counselor trainees from 57 CACREP-accredited programs. Results of a second-order confirmatory factor analysis supported the three-dimensional factor structure of the revised FSV Scale and the presence of a higher-order factor. Researchers also identified demographic differences in counselor trainees’ sensitivity to the FSV barriers. Results and implications of the utility of the revised FSV Scale for enhancing the practice of clinical supervision are discussed.
... In einer weiteren Untersuchung von Reis et al. (2014) an einer ebenfalls großen Stichprobe, nämlich von über 700 Psychotherapeutinnen, gaben 45 % große emotionale Erschöpfung und 30 % ein reduziertes subjektives Wohlbefinden für sich an. In der Studie von Gilroy et al. (2002) bezeichneten sich von über tausend Befragten 62 % als depressiv, von diesen wiederum nannten 42 % suizidale Gedanken und Verhaltensweisen. Im 2009 erschienenen "APA Collegue Assistance and Wellness Survey" berichteten 40-60 % der befragten Praktikerinnen, dass sie mindestens eine kurzzeitige Unterbrechung ihres professionellen Funktionierens hatten, die mit Burnout, Ängsten oder Depression im Zusammenhang stand; 18 % gaben an, dass sie -bei Konfrontation mit persönlichen oder beruflichen Stressoren und Herausforderungen -Suizidgedanken hatten (APA 2010 Interessant ist, dass die Berufserfahrung als bedeutsam für das Burnout-und Depressionsrisiko angesehen wird. ...
Article
Die aktuelle Diskussion zur Evaluation ambulanter psychotherapeutischer Behand- lungen führt zur Frage nach dem Nutzen von Feedback- und Monitoring-Systemen in der Praxis. Wie kann Feedback in die Routinepraxis integriert werden und wie verändert es die therapeutische Arbeit? https://www.psychotherapeutenjournal.de/blaetterkatalog/PTJ-4-2019/index.html
... Mere specifikke støttende tiltag som egenterapi, supervision, og kollegial supervision forebygger negative effekter af det kliniske arbejde og faciliterer personlig vaekst hos den enkelte (Linley et al., 2007). Egenomsorg bør skrives ind i de etiske retningslinjer for psykologer; deltagelse i egenterapi, kollegial supervision, meditation og lignende egenomsorgsrettede aktiviteter burde belønnes og vaere en moralsk fordring (Gilroy et al. 2002;Barnett, Baker, Elman, & Schoener, 2007i Bearse et al. 2013. ...
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Træt, utilpas, på grænsen til kvalme. Orker ikke at lukke flere klienter ind i klinikken med depressioner, angst og stress. Gider ikke høre mere om dårligt selvværd, manglende energi og tilbagevendende tristhed. Lysten til at starte forfra med at forstå og hjælpe endnu en lidende klient ligger underdrejet. Nogle gange er det sådan at være klinisk psykolog. Pinligt, uprofessionelt og kritisabelt kunne man sige – men i fortrolige kollegiale samtaler viser det sig ikke sjældent, at en hel del af os fra tid til anden har det sådan. Forskning har påvist, at psykologer er mere triste og slidte end de fleste andre faggrupper (Madslund & Rydahl, 2013). Det er tankevækkende, at psykologer med den solide fag-lige baggrund og erfaring, vi har, ser ud til at have problemer med at tage vores egen medicin – eller terapi om man vil: burde vi ikke have det bedre end resten af befolkningen og score lavere på tristhed og stress? Hvad er der egentlig på spil her? Hvordan kan vi forstå denne inkonsistens? En række faktorer influerer negativt på psykologens psykiske trivsel: medfølelsen og indfølingen med klienten er ikke altid en omkostningsfri ydelse. Personlige traumer kan være medvirkende til øget risiko for bl.a. udbrændthed, og fund tyder på, at psykologer i højere grad end den gennemsnitlige befolkning har oplevet barndomstraumer og/eller tidligt har måttet varetage forældrelignende ansvar, hvilket kan medvirke til udvikling af træk som selvtilsidesættelse og fokus på andres behov. Belastninger, omsorgsfuldhed og over-involvering over lang tid og terapeutiske anstrengelser uden tilstrækkelige positive resultater kan føre til omsorgstræthed: en tilstand af udbrændthed, udmattelse, depersonalisering og håbløshed. Samlet set opstår et paradoks: det, som forekommer at være uundværlige træk og karakteristika hos psykologen, udgør samtidigt en særlig sårbarhed i psykologarbejdet. [...]
... Similar findings have been found elsewhere. For example, in a study of 425 psychologists, Gilroy et al. (2002) found that of the participants reporting previous depression, 32 per cent reported that the experience had increased their empathy towards clients. ...
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Purpose The purpose of this paper is to investigate the stressors involved in pre-qualification clinical psychology as reported by a sample of the UK trainee clinical psychologists. The main coping strategies reported by the trainees are also explored. Design/methodology/approach One-to-one interviews were conducted with 15 trainee clinical psychologists using qualitative research methods. Themes were established using the main principles of thematic analysis. Findings Three themes were identified that described the pressures involved in applying to the course, the support networks available to trainees, and the commonalities in their personal history, experiences and self-reported personality characteristics. Originality/value It is important to investigate the sources of stress and coping strategies in trainees to help them cope more effectively. The findings of the study are discussed within the context of clinical psychology training.
... Clinicians' personal issues sometimes provide the basis for experiencing relationships with patients as difficult. Clinicians, themselves, may experience burnout or psychiatric problems that affect how they interact with patients and thereby disrupt the quality of treatment they are providing (Gilroy, Carroll, & Murra, 2002;Schwenck, Gorenflo, & Leja, 2008;Tarkan, 2008). For example, physicians who have more intense workloads were more likely to experience a greater proportion of patient encounters as difficult Mathers, Jones, & Hannay, 1995). ...
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Various problems can occur during encounters between health providers and patients. In some instances, clinicians attribute these problems to patients being “difficult.” However, clinicians’ perception of difficulties in the clinical encounter are also influenced by: clinicians’ own attitudes, thoughts, and behavior; the specific setting in which patient and clinician interact; and properties of the healthcare organization in which they are embedded. This article explores how psychologists in medical settings can serve as a resource that: improves patient care for difficult patients; supports provider wellness; provides relevant education to clinical providers; and reduces the stress that difficult patients place on the healthcare system. The definition, scope, and impact of difficult patients in healthcare settings are reviewed, including an examination of patient, clinician, and systems factors that contribute to the etiology of difficult clinical encounters. Strategies are discussed that may prevent or limit the adverse impact of difficult patients in healthcare, with special emphasis on the roles of psychologists in interprofessional healthcare teams.
... As would be expected, it has been found that as a result of these early experiences, clinicians were more likely to employ maladaptive strategies to cope with this emotional distress in their personal lives (Elliott & Guy, 1993;Sussman, 1992). For instance, research on suicide among mental health professionals has shown that clinicians commit suicide at a rate exceeding that of the general population (Gilroy, Carroll, & Murra, 2002). Interestingly, having had a history of personal suicidality may predicate one to be less comfortable working with and more likely to pathogize suicidal individuals (Hunter, 2015). ...
Article
There are some who criticize mainstream mental health approaches and point out that individuals in distress appear to be getting worse, as opposed to better, while in treatment. Ex-patients often advocate for a person-centered, humanistic approach to working with emotional distress, while clinicians tend to offer a disease-based, deficit-focused model. This article is an exploration of the dynamics between patients and professionals that may be contributing to conflicting perspectives on what constitutes helpful intervention. Specifically, concepts of terror management theory are used to explore how the existential anxieties experienced both by individuals with serious emotional difficulties as well as their treating clinicians, which are consciously or unconsciously avoided in treatment, can reciprocally trigger distressing anxiety in the other. Suggestions are offered as to what could help mitigate this existential stalemate in the psychotherapeutic context.
... The prevalence of depression among participants was close to the proportion of participants who thought that they had experienced depression; this may suggest that MHPs have a better insight about their experience of depression than burnout. Gilroy et al. reported that female psychologists were significantly more likely to experience some form of depression than male psychologists; [21] however, in this study, there was also a significant difference between men and women in other mental health specialties, with women being almost twice as likely to experience depression than men. ...
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Background: Mental health workers face a lot of stressors in their jobs. This issue has been addressed widely by researchers as a major factor predisposing these professionals to many mental health disorders. However, there is limited research addressing the prevalence of these disorders and their treatment preferences among mental health professionals (MHPs) in Saudi Arabia. Aims: This study aims to assess the prevalence and treatment preference of depression, anxiety, and burnout among MHPs in Saudi Arabia. Methods: In this cross-sectional study, MHPs in Saudi Arabia were approached to participate in the study. A self-administered online survey was administered with questions on basic demographics, treatment preference, and three scales that assessed burnout (the Maslach Burnout Inventory), depression (Patient Health Questionnaire-9), and anxiety (Generalized Anxiety Disorder-7). SPSS version 22.0 was used to perform the analysis. Results: A total of 1,253 surveys were completed (59.8% by women); most respondents were psychologists (72.5%). Burnout was the most prevalent in our sample (42.7%), followed by depression (21%) and anxiety (19%). Psychiatrists were more likely to suffer from emotional exhaustion than other MHPs. Women were significantly more likely to develop anxiety and depression than men. For (37%) of the psychologists and similarly (36.65%) of the psychiatrists, making decisions about inpatient treatment was influenced by confidentiality or stigma. Conclusion: Burnout, depression, and anxiety are prevalent among MHPs. Implementing strategies to overcome these issues are vital to improve their well-being and maintain the provision of high-quality mental health care to their patients.
... Again this seems to draw from the existing discourses of "impaired professional." Studies using more traditional epistemologies have reported that professionals with service user experience encounter dilemmas (Berry, Hayward, & Chandler, 2011;Cain, 2000;Charlemagne-Odle, Harmon, & Maltby, 2014;Gilroy, Carroll, & Murra, 2001;Stanley, Manthrope, & White, 2007;van Erp, Hendriksen-Favier, & Boer, 2010). These include issues regarding self-disclosure, experiencing stigma, prejudice and discrimination, being accused of overidentification and boundary violation, having reduced energy, confidence and emotional presence, and a discrepancy between their personal identity and their professional role. ...
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“Mental health professionals” are increasingly speaking out about their own experiences of using mental health services. However, research suggests that they face identity-related dilemmas because social conventions tend to assume two distinct identities: “professionals” as relatively socially powerful and “patients” as comparatively powerless. The aim of this study was, through discourse analysis, to explore how “mental health professionals” with “mental health service user” experience “construct” their identity. Discourse analysis views identity as fluid and continually renegotiated in social contexts. Ten participants were interviewed, and the interviews were transcribed and analyzed. Participants constructed their identity variously, including as separate “professional” and “patient” identities, switching between these in relation to different contexts, suggesting “unintegrated” identities. Participants also demonstrated personally valued “integrated” identities in relation to some professional contexts. Implications for clinical practice and future research are explored. Positive identity discourses that integrate experiences as a service user and a professional included “personhood” and insider “activist,” drawing in turn on discourses of “personal recovery,” “lived experience,” and “use of self.” These integrated identities can potentially be foregrounded to contribute to realizing the social value of service user and other lived experience in mental health workers, and highlighting positive and hopeful perspectives on mental distress.
... For example, Bober, Regehr and Zhou (2006) found that therapists who were exposed to victims' trauma were more likely to report higher levels of traumatic stress symptoms and intrusion. Other studies specifically examining the mental health of psychologists have found elevated rates of depression and stress in this population (Gilroy et al, 2002). McCann and Pearlman (1990) argued that vicarious trauma may be considered a normal reaction to trauma work; however, more recent studies report that it may result in emotional, cognitive, and physical symptoms that can disrupt a therapist's personal and professional self. ...
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Almost no nation has been spared as the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) has swept around the world. As the pandemic has upended much of society, frontline health care workers have shouldered much of the burden. Among other professionals, Mental Health Psychology Practitioners contribute significantly to fighting off the negative psychological effects of COVID-19, including distress, anxiety, and depression – provided they themselves can demonstrate resilience.
... Further rationale for studying reflective capacity in healthcare professions comes from evidence of the benefits of reflective practices, including reducing practitioner burnout (Nielsen & Tulinius, 2009), and improved practitioner empathy for clients (Spendelow & Butler, 2016). This is of importance for trainees who face profession-specific demands that increase vulnerability to distress (Dunning, 2006), such as professional self-doubt and long clinical hours (Gilroy, Carroll, & Murra, 2002). ...
... H. Lee, 2008). However, taking care of others without considering one's own needs and interests may create a culture of self-sacrifice and heroic syndrome that, in turn, can ultimately result in chronic stress, depression, and burnout for the counselor (Christopher et al., 2006;Gilroy et al., 2002;Hill, 2004;Jeong, 2017;Lambie, 2007;Maslach et al., 2001;Skovholt, 2000;Skovholt et al., 2001). When counselors suffer from burnout, their intention to quit increases (Acker, 2012;J. ...
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This study was aimed at identifying counselor profiles based on their balance between self‐care and caring for others, and examining how these profiles differ by levels of burnout and life satisfaction. We conducted a latent profile analysis of 292 Korean counselors and identified four groups: (a) low care, (b) typical care, (c) high care, and (d) low self‐care/high other‐care. Of these, the typical care and high care groups had lower levels of incompetence and deterioration in personal life and higher levels of life satisfaction compared with the low self‐care/high other‐care group. Counselor self‐awareness, education level, work experience, and number of handled cases were found to be differentiators among the four profiles. Limitations and implications are discussed.
... The importance of understanding and effectively addressing the stress and mental health concerns of clinical psychology doctoral students is underscored by evidence suggesting that these concerns continue throughout and beyond their graduate training. Mental health providers, including clinical psychologists, experience significant stressors and mental health symptoms, as well as stigma against seeking treatment (Gilroy et al., 2002;Tay et al., 2018;Thompson et al., 2014). In a large sample of clinical psychologists (N = 678), Tay et al. (2018) found that nearly 70% reported mild to moderate symptoms of depression and 42% reported anxiety at some point in their lives. ...
Article
Few studies have examined the mental health of clinical psychology doctoral students, a unique group given their education and training in psychopathology, assessment, and intervention. Students (N = 912) completed an online survey assessing demographics, mental health, mental healthcare utilization, and barriers to care during graduate school. Nearly 25% of participants reported moderate to severe symptoms of anxiety, 20% reported moderate to severe symptoms of depression or suicidal intent (SI), and more than 10% reported a high risk of alcohol abuse or moderate to severe drug use during graduate school. In comparison to peers, ethnic minority and lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ+) participants reported more symptoms of depression and SI. LGBTQ+ participants reported more nonsuicidal self-injury and drug use. Participants also experienced significant barriers to receiving mental healthcare (e.g., financial difficulties, limited availability, insufficient time). Leadership is encouraged to prioritize the mental health of clinical psychology doctoral students, which may have implications on their service provision.
... Compassion fatigue occurs suddenly and creates tension, nervousness and a sense of helplessness (Ledoux, 2015;Potter, Deshields, Divanbeigi, Berger, Cipriano, Norris & Olsen, 2010). Other changes observed in psychologists include lack of patience, secondary trauma anxiety and difficulty interacting with people in the social and family environment, lack of Empathy, lack of life satisfaction, selective attention, memory disturbance and low decision making (Killian, 2008;Richardson, Jaber, Chan, Jesse, Kaur, & Sangha, 2016;Gilroy, Carroll & Murra, 2002;Finlay-Jones, Rees & Kane, 2015). ...
... And having personal experience with emotional suffering may be beneficial in jobs that involve working directly with others who also live with mental illness, as described in the model of the wounded healer (Zerubavel & Wright, 2012). For example, VA employees with self-reported psychiatric diagnoses like PTSD or depression (Boyd et al., 2016) and clinical psychologists with affective disorders such as dysthymia, depression, or bipolar (Gilroy et al., 2002) find that their lived experiences increase their empathy with clients. ...
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The purpose of this study is to explore how professional employment impacts mental health among people with mental illness, and how having a mental illness impacts job performance, both positively and negatively. The research is based on in-depth interview data from 56 professionals diagnosed with mental illness, and the interview transcripts are analyzed in accordance with the flexible coding model of qualitative data analysis. We find that working conditions of professional jobs pose challenges to managing symptoms of mental illness, including the pressures of responsibility and exposure to secondary trauma. However, professional employment also provides benefits such as social connections and feeling accountable. Similarly, symptoms cause problems at work like having angry outbursts, yet experience with mental illness informs job performance such as by increasing empathy with others. We use these findings to recommend new directions for research and argue for inclusion of people with mental illness in the workplace.
... Paraprofessionals constant exposure to others' detailed narration of traumatic experiences can affect their personal life and their ability to continue working as a paraprofessional. Repeated exposure to details of traumatic experiences of others has also been linked to secondary traumatic stress (STS) and work-related mental health challenges in the literature (Gilroy, Carroll, & Murra, 2002;Hensel, Ruiz, Finney, & Dewa, 2015). The safety programme for the current study aims to prevent and treat STS and related mental health problems, to ensure participants' safety, to ensure good quality in care, and to provide a good and long-lasting intervention environ ment. ...
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Background Parents of children with intellectual and neurodevelopmental disorders (IDD) often experience traumatic events in the care of their children. This leads to comparatively high numbers of mental health problems such as posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in those parents. Intervention approaches for parents of children with IDD are scarce and many parents remain without support. Objective This study aims to test the feasibility and efficacy of online Narrative Exposure Therapy (eNET) with parents of children with IDD. Methods The study follows a randomized waitlist-control design. eNET is an exposure-based PTSD intervention and includes 8–12 90-minute sessions. All sessions will be conducted via video calls with trained paraprofessionals. We aim to include 50 parents, approximately 25 in the immediate intervention group and 25 in the waitlist group. Waitlist participants will receive the same intervention after a three-month wait period. All participants need to either fulfill full or subclinical PTSD symptoms according to DSM-5. Feasibility and efficacy of the intervention will be measured with pre, post, and 2 and 6 months follow-up surveys focusing on PTSD symptoms. Secondary outcomes include other health-related outcomes such as physical symptoms, depression symptoms, anxiety symptoms and functionality. Conclusions The proposed study allows us to test the feasibility and efficacy of eNET in a sample of parents of children with IDD. There are so far no published studies on the evidence of eNET; this study is one of the first randomized controlled trials investigating the feasibility and efficacy of eNET and therefore will have implications on further research and practice. Clinical trial registration: NCT04385927 Date and version identifier: 22 July 2021
... This result is comparable to previous studies showing that secondary traumatic experiences could affect the development of depression in workers who help the population exposed to trauma. 22,34,35 Anxiety and insomnia in our study were also affected by secondary trauma. This is expected as they are often comorbid symptoms of depression. ...
Article
Objective: The objective of the present study was to explore causal pathways to understand how second traumatic experiences could affect the development of emotional exhaustion and psychiatric problems. Methods: A total of 582 workers who had jobs vulnerable to secondary traumatic experiences were enrolled for this study. Emotional exhaustion, secondary trauma, resilience, perceived stress, depression, anxiety, and sleep problems were evaluated. A model with pathways from secondary traumatic experience score to depression and anxiety was proposed. The participants were divided into three groups according to the resilience: the low, middle and high resilience group. Results: Resilience was a meaningful moderator between secondary traumatic experiences and psychiatric problems. In the path model, the secondary trauma and perceived stress directly and indirectly predicted perceived stress, emotional exhaustion, depression, anxiety, and sleep problems in all three groups. Direct effects of perceived stress on depression and anxiety were the largest in the low resilience group. However, direct effects of secondary trauma on perceived stress and emotional exhaustion were the largest in the high resilience group. Conclusion: Understanding the needs of focusing for distinct psychological factors offers a valuable direction for the development of intervention programs to prevent emotional exhaustion among workers with secondary traumatic experiences.
... Supervision. Group supervision will use methods such as providing social support to smooth out the effects of compassion fatigue on the counselor [12]. Group supervision is infrequent, usually not immediately after counseling, and typically occurs once a week, much less frequently than counseling. ...
Article
Zusammenfassung. Hintergrund: Krankheitsängste beziehen sich meist auf die Angst vor dem Leiden an somatischen Erkrankungen. In Einzelfallberichten wurden auch Ängste vor psychischen Störungen berichtet, jedoch bisher nicht systematisch untersucht. Psychotherapeut_innen sind ständig mit psychischen Erkrankungen konfrontiert. Fragestellung: Diese Studie untersucht, wie stark Krankheitsängste bei Psychotherapeut_innen ausgeprägt sind und welche Faktoren diese beeinflussen. Methoden: Insgesamt 239 Psychotherapeut_innen wurden per anonymer Onlinebefragung mit den Illness Attitude Scales und der Mini-Symptom-Checklist untersucht. Ergebnisse: Krankheitsängste bei Psychotherapeut_innen waren geringer ausgeprägt als in der Allgemeinbevölkerung und bei Psychologiestudierenden. Faktoren wie die allgemeine psychische Belastung und das Vorhandensein tatsächlicher Diagnosen gingen mit erhöhten Krankheitsängsten einher. Schlussfolgerungen: Krankheitsängste können sich nicht nur auf somatische Erkrankungen beziehen, sondern auch psychische Störungen betreffen. Eine stärkere Berücksichtigung psychischer Krankheitsängste und deren weitere systematische Erfassung erscheinen daher wünschenswert.
Article
Objective The profession of psychology is a challenging and demanding field, particularly for newly registered psychologists entering the workforce. Resilience can be an important factor in psychologists' success and well‐being, therefore this study aimed to explore the concept of resilience among early‐career psychologists by identifying factors and strategies which support resilience and which aspects of work are most challenging for an early‐career psychologist. The study also explored how universities could help graduates to be more resilient. Method A sample of 96 early‐career psychologists practising in Australia within various specialisations was recruited, and participants were asked five questions about their resilience and any contributing factors. The research team implemented a qualitative method and formulated the interview schedule with items determined through the literature. Interview data were thematically analysed. Results Dominant themes regarding workplace factors that affect resilience concerned leadership, organisational culture, effort–reward imbalance, and emotional labour. Strategies reported to foster resilience in early‐career psychologists included workload management, professional development, utilising peer networks, reflection, exercise, and socialising. Regarding the university training pathway, support from the Australian Psychological Society and colleges was important, as well as greater focus on work placements, supervision, work‐integrated learning, job‐relevant coursework, self‐care education, teamwork, critical thinking skills, work readiness initiatives, career management support, and experience working within multidisciplinary teams. Conclusions This study has shown the important role that universities and workplaces play in determining an early‐career psychologist's resilience. These findings have new practical implications for university curricula and organisational practices.
Article
Background: It is well known that helping professionals experience functional impairment related to elevated symptoms of psychological distress as a result of frequent empathic engagement with distressed others. Whether telephone crisis support workers are impacted in a similar way is not currently reported in the literature. Aims: The purpose of this study was to test a hypothesized model of factors contributing to functional impairment in telephone crisis support workers. Method: A national sample of 210 telephone crisis support workers completed an online survey including measures of emotion regulation, symptoms of general psychological distress and suicidal ideation, intentions to seek help for symptoms, and functional impairment. Structural equation modeling was used to test the fit of the data to the hypothesized model. Results: Goodness-of-fit indices were adequate and supported the interactive effects of emotion regulation, general psychological distress, suicidal ideation, and intentions to seek help for ideation on functional impairment. Conclusion: These results warrant the deliberate management of telephone crisis support workers' impairment through service selection, training, supervision, and professional development strategies. Future research replicating and extending this model will further inform the modification and/or development of strategies to optimize telephone crisis support workers' well-being and delivery of support to callers.
Article
Psychologists may have a uniquely high risk for suicide. We examined whether, among 172 psychologists, factors predicting suicide risk among the general population (e.g., gender and mental illness), occupational factors (e.g., burnout and secondary traumatic stress), and past trauma predicted suicidality. We also tested whether resilience and meaning in life were negatively related to suicidality and whether resilience buffered relationships between risk factors and suicidality. Family history of mental illness, number of traumas, and lifetime depression/anxiety predicted higher suicidality, whereas resilience predicted lower suicidality. At higher levels of resilience, the relationship between family history of suicide and suicidality was stronger.
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In this paper, I will discuss the concept of self-care and its importance for clinical psychologists, both during training and post-qualification. I will review the pertinent literature in this area covering the concept of self-care and its meaning, the personal and professional impact of a lack of self-care for clinical psychologists, and discuss some of the barriers to implementing self-care practices. Throughout the discussion of barriers to self-care, I will intersperse three reflective pieces on my own experiences throughout clinical psychology training, which will allow for a more in-depth exploration of the issues. My conclusion will highlight the personal, professional and systemic barriers to self-care in clinical psychologists, and in other helping professionals, and suggest possible ways of tackling these barriers and promoting greater utilisation of self-care during clinical training and beyond and across different professional groups.
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Beliefs about the importance of ethical behavior to competent practice have prompted major shifts in psychology ethics over time. Yet few studies examine ethical beliefs and behavior after training, and most comprehensive research is now 30 years old. As such, it is unclear whether shifts in the field have resulted in general improvements in ethical practice: Are we psychologists ‘ships in the rising sea,’ lifted by changes in ethical codes and training over time? Participants (N = 325) completed a survey of ethical beliefs and behaviors (Pope, Tabachnick, & Keith-Spiegel, 1987). Analyses examined group differences, consistency of frequency and ethicality ratings, and comparisons with past data. Over half of behaviors were rated as less ethical and occurring less frequently than in 1987, with early career psychologists generally reporting less ethically questionable behavior. Recommendations for enhancing ethics education are discussed.
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Background: In order to respond to crises with appropriate intervention, crisis workers are required to manage their own needs as well as the needs of those they respond to. Aims: A systematic review of the literature was conducted to examine whether telephone crisis support workers experience elevated symptoms of psychological distress and are impaired by elevated symptoms. Method: Studies were identified in April 2015 by searching three databases, conducting a gray literature search, and forward and backward citation chaining. Results: Of 113 identified studies, seven were included in the review. Results suggest that that telephone crisis support workers experience symptoms of vicarious traumatization, stress, burnout, and psychiatric disorders, and that they may not respond optimally to callers when experiencing elevated symptoms of distress. However, definitive conclusions cannot be drawn due to the paucity and methodological limitations of available data. Limitations: While the most comprehensive search strategy possible was adopted, resource constraints meant that conference abstracts were not searched and authors were not contacted for additional unpublished information. Conclusion: There is an urgent need to identify the impact of telephone crisis support workers' role on their well-being, the determinants of worker well-being in the telephone crisis support context, and the extent to which well-being impacts their performance and caller outcomes. This will help inform strategies to optimize telephone crisis support workers' well-being and their delivery of support to callers.
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Therapist factors are generally thought to be important predictors of their capacity to understand and respond to clinical material. However, this assumption has been rarely examined empirically. The current study aims to identify which features of personality and clinical symptomatology predict a trainee therapist’s rating of cognitive-behavioural (CB) and psychodynamic-interpersonal (PI) processes in video recordings of these therapies. 80 psychology trainees completed the MMPI-2-RF and watched two video recordings of therapy sessions showing prototypical examples of cognitive-behavioural (CB) and psychodynamic-interpersonal (PI) psychotherapy, rating the processes they could identify using the Comparative Psychotherapy Process Scale (CPPS). Trainees accurately differentiated CB from PI process while viewing the CB session, but rated the CB video higher in PI processes than the PI video itself. Bayesian regression models showed that the most consistent MMPI-2-RF scale that predicted variance in ratings was Hypomanic activation (RC9) predicting higher ratings of all psychotherapy processes in both conditions, while clinical scale factors such as Aggression (AGGR-r), and personality scale factors Psychoticism (PSYC-r) and Neuroticism (NEGE-r) showed some notable but less consistent predictions. The variances in psychotherapy process ratings accounted for by MMPI-2-RF scales ranged from 15% to 51%. The study suggests that some aspects of a trainee’s clinical symptoms and personality factors do influence their rating of psychotherapy processes but further studies would be required to substantiate such findings. These findings have relevance to therapist training and selection for clinical training
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Ever since clinical psychology became a discipline, paraprofessionals have been delivering many psychological services. These services include administering tests, providing support and psychoeducation, and delivering psychological interventions. Paraprofessionals address serious gaps in health care provision. Perhaps the most pressing gap is the chronic undersupply of psychologists in most jurisdictions. In this chapter, we review the contributions and the role of paraprofessionals as applied to high, medium, and low-income countries and outline the strengths and challenges that arise when paraprofessionals deliver care. Different approaches how paraprofessionals can strengthen existing health care systems as well as the importance of training and supervision will be elaborated. There is a paucity of information and analysis of this often neglected group who is likely to continue and expand contributions to psychological care. Evaluations of services provided by paraprofessionals show promising results, and indicate a need to further develop and strengthen the role of paraprofessionals in mental health care.
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Participation in either individual or group counseling during a counseling graduate program provides multiple personal and professional benefits. However, a consistent procedure for its implementation is not recognized within the profession. The barriers and benefits of requiring a personal counseling experience for graduate students are provided. Additionally, a policy for required counseling is offered as a recommendation to programs and to the profession.
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Self-care is associated with psychology practitioners’ psychological wellbeing and fewer risks connected with professional impairment and client harm. Despite this, the concept of self-care is under-deployed early in psychology training and under-researched. This study of 130 undergraduate psychology students investigated levels and relationships among self-care related constructs: self-compassion, mindfulness, self-reflection, and integrated self-knowledge. Participant self-reported levels of mindfulness, self-reflection, and self-compassion were low whereas integrated self-knowledge was high. As hypothesised, path analyses found integrated self-knowledge mediated the relationship between mindfulness and self-compassion, and between self-reflection and self-compassion. Mindfulness and self-reflection predicted integrated self-knowledge; but there was no relationship between mindfulness and self-awareness. Findings highlight the importance of teaching self-care related constructs during undergraduate psychology training.
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Introduction The purpose of this study was to explore the experiences of therapists in taking care of their own mental, emotional and spiritual well‐being. This is an under‐researched area that is of vital importance, not only for the well‐being of the therapists themselves, but also for their clients. Aim This qualitative study examined the experiences that counsellors have in taking care of their own mental, emotional and spiritual well‐being. Method Semi‐structured qualitative interviews were conducted with five experienced therapists who had all been qualified for eight years or more. Data were thematically analysed within the overall principles of Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis. Results Four superordinate themes were identified. These concerned: (a) the demands and challenges that therapists face in their work, particularly when dealing with difficult clients and client issues; (b) the perception that the therapists have that their own preparation and training for taking care of themselves was inadequate; (c) growth for the therapists personally and in self‐awareness, learning their own limitations, building resilience and realising the necessity of prioritising self‐care; (d) therapists becoming more compassionate towards themselves, and finding ways of managing their own self‐care. Discussion Results revealed that the process of managing good self‐care is a journey that begins with little or no knowledge of the importance of self‐care, to arriving at a point of realising its importance and making it a priority. Conclusion/Implications Gaps in training were highlighted along with a need to support broader understanding and recognition of the value of therapist self‐care.
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The objective of this paper is to examine the students’ attitudes toward seeking psychological help for mental health problems.The Data was collected from July to August 2015 from 600 students from three state universities in Sri Lanka.The students’ help seeking attitudes were measured usingInventory of Attitudes toward Seeking Mental Health Services (IASMHS). Actual Help Seeking Questionnaire (AHSQ) was used to measure the actual help seeking behavior of the participants. Data was analyzed using Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS 20) and AMOS 20.More educated, female respondents who are in the middle age are more likely to seek help for their mental health problems. Most of the students believe the importance of seeking psychological help for mental health problems. However, it is necessary to improve the students’ mental health literacy to improve the positive treatment beliefs for mental health problems. Interventions to change people’s attitudes towards seeking psychological help for mental health problems are significant. Keywords: Attitudes, Help Seeking, Behavior.
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Psychotherapists are susceptible to prevailing negative stereotypes that exist in society at large. Inappropriate negative attitudes toward depressed and ill patients can adversely affect interactions with such clients. The authors examined the reactions of 410 psychologists to vignettes that described a client who emitted either depressed or nondepressed behavior and who varied in terms of cancer prognosis. Clinicians had negative mood reactions after reading the vignette of the depressed client; they also believed the depressed client possessed many undesirable personal attributes. Practicing psychologists are urged to reflect on their attitudes and beliefs so they do not negatively affect assessment and therapy services.
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Tested the hypothesis that number of hours of personal therapy would be positively associated with therapists' ability to display empathy, warmth, and genuineness in the treatment hour. 17 therapists, (graduate students in a clinical psychology doctoral program) submitted sample tapes of their therapy sessions and completed the MMPI and questionnaires regarding their therapy experience as a client. The tapes were rated by mental health professionals trained in the use of the Truax and Carkhuff scales for Accurate Empathy, Nonpossessive Warmth, and Genuineness. These scores were compared with number of hours of therapy experience as a client using a Spearman rank order correlation. Comparisons were significant for Empathy and Genuineness. (21 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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Full-text available
Psychotherapists are susceptible to prevailing negative stereotypes that exist in society at large. Inappropriate negative attitudes toward depressed and ill patients can adversely affect interactions with such clients. The authors examined the reactions of 410 psychologists to vignettes that described a client who emitted either depressed or nondepressed behavior and who varied in terms of cancer prognosis. Clinicians had negative mood reactions after reading the vignette of the depressed client; they also believed the depressed client possessed many undesirable personal attributes. Practicing psychologists are urged to reflect on their attitudes and beliefs so they do not negatively affect assessment and therapy services. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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The heads of 107 programs in professional psychology certified by the American Psychological Association participated in a questionnaire study designed to learn their views about well-functioning in professional psychologists and what they had done and would like to do, programmatically, to maintain and enhance it. Their responses were compared with those of 339 licensed psychologists in a prior study. Although the 2 groups both assigned high ratings to self-awareness, a balanced lifestyle, relationship with spouse or partner, and personal values, overall the program heads put more emphasis on the didactic-supervisory items, whereas the practitioners emphasized the personal-existential items. Modifications of psychology programs to place well-functioning of students on par with other major purposes are described in detail.
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Surveyed 167 licensed psychologists (academicians and practitioners) about opinions toward impaired practitioners. Results suggest the following: (a) A significant proportion of psychologists were judged to be impaired; (b) the majority of Ss believed that impaired practitioners are a serious problem; (c) few Ss were willing to refer impaired colleagues to a therapist or report them to a regulatory agency; (d) training in ethics was related to awareness, seeking help, offering help, and reporting colleagues to a regulatory agency; and (e) Ss overwhelmingly favored the least restrictive proposals for intervention. (9 ref)
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While recent autobiographical accounts of women psychotherapists with depressive illnesses have provided vivid and compelling portraits of therapists' experiences in therapy (e.g., Jamison, 1995; Manning, 1995), further research is needed to clarify the impact that depression and its treatment have upon both collegial relationships and clinical practice. A subset of the membership of the Association for Women in Psychology (AWP) was surveyed concerning therapists' experiences with depression and its treatment. Of 220 respondents, 76% reported some form of depressive illness. Eighty-five percent of respondents indicated that they participated in personal therapy. When evaluating their clinical work, respondents reported both positive and negative consequences resulting from their depression. While some respondents noted improvement in collegial relationships, many felt judged and avoided.
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A nationwide anonymous survey of 749 psychologists practicing psychotherapy was conducted to assess the impact of therapists' personal distress on the quality of patient care provided. A usable return rate of 44% was obtained ( N = 318). An SPSS-X multiple discriminant analyses equation was used for the data analysis. A total of 74.3% reported experiencing "personal distress" during the previous 3 years; of those, 36.7% indicated that it decreased the quality of patient care, and 4.6% admitted that it resulted in inadequate treatment. A variety of factors were found to be associated with the experience of personal distress encountered, its impact on treatment, and the treatment interventions used.
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319 practicing psychotherapists from 3 professional associations, Divisions 29 (Psychotherapy) and 32 (Humanistic) of the American Psychological Association and the Association for Advancement of Behavior Therapy, were surveyed concerning their personal characteristics, training experiences, and predominant professional activities. The survey also assessed their preferred and least preferred theoretical orientation, structure (frequency and duration) of therapy, diagnoses of usual therapy case load, and perceived effectiveness with various types of patients. Ss' theoretical orientations were largely consistent with group membership. Differences among the groups in terms of their characteristics, activities, types of clients, and treatment structure appeared to be consistent with the dominant theoretical orientation of the group. Preferred types of clients were generally related to base-rate outcome expectancies of psychosocial interventions (i.e., severity and duration of the disorder) but did not differ among the 3 groups. It is suggested that no single professional association is representative of American psychologists engaged in psychotherapy; thus, many associations and disciplines need to be sampled to assess accurately the field of psychotherapy and its practitioners. (30 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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Argues that work by C. H. Patterson (see record 1989-33835-001) failed to recognize the distinction between eclecticism and integration in psychotherapy and therefore made unwarranted conclusions about the prospects of technical eclecticism and integration. Areas of disagreement between J. C. Norcross and Patterson are detailed, and 5 points of mutual agreement are listed. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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Both the psychologist and the consumer suffer when the professional's distress or impairment is inadequately managed. Although psychologists have significant rates of distress and impairment, numerous personal and occupational factors may decrease the likelihood that they will seek assistance when in trouble. Policies regarding the distressed or impaired psychologist, as enacted, are neither consistent nor comprehensive, and they may exacerbate risk to consumers and psychologists alike. Current oversight approaches to the impaired professional tend to emphasize code enforcement more than prevention and education. Recommendations to improve our effectiveness for both the consumer and the psychologist are offered. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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Argues that despite the awareness among mental health professionals of the need for the care of fellow practitioners, with emphasis on professional burnout and occupational counseling, the difficulties encountered by therapists in the treatment of their colleagues have been noticeably neglected. Based on experience treating colleagues, interventions and insights designed to avoid pitfalls while facilitating treatment are offered. It is suggested that the choice of a therapist should permit the patient a reasonable degree of social life-space anonymity, a sense of compatible treatment values and philosophy, and knowledge of and respect for the therapist's professional expertise. Factors that motivate a therapist to seek personal therapy are often more complex in reality than for the general patient population. Therapists who become patients have apprehensions that feelings emerging in their own psychotherapy will erode the carefully honed sense of self-as-healer/patients-as-wounded paradigm. (13 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Article
In recent years there has been an increasing body of literature investigating the motives of counsellors and psychotherapists. Although there are considerable methodological problems with researching this area, the consensus in this literature seems to be that one determinant for becoming a counsellor may be a conscious or unconscious wish to make good the unresolved difficulties of early childhood. The unsurprising findings that counsellors have had as least as much trauma in their early lives as the general population raise questions about the impact of this for counsellors in training. This paper summarises the literature relating to the concept of the wounded healer and examines the implications of this for tolerating distress among trainee counsellors. A model is presented that aims to address this distress and teach the trainee to practice effective preventative self-care.
Article
The purpose of this exploratory study was to collect self-report data on willingness to seek personal therapy among therapists in Utah, and to discover if group trends occur among marriage and family therapists, psychologists, and social workers. Self-report background characteristics such as age, gender, marital status, number of children, and practice site, served as independent viriables. Responses from 421 therapists were obtained from a mail survey. Results showed that number of children, years in private practice, number of client contact hours per week, gender, marital status, religion, profession, and practice site were significant in willingness to seek personal therapy. Specific gender data and differences across the professions are presented.