Assimilation, reflexivity, and therapist responsiveness in group psychotherapy for social phobia : A case study
Penttinen, H., Wahlström, J., & Hartikainen, K. (2017). Assimilation, reflexivity, and therapist responsiveness in group psychotherapy for social phobia : A case study. Psychotherapy Research, 27 (6), 710-723. doi:10.1080/10503307.2016.1158430
Published inPsychotherapy Research
© 2016 Society for Psychotherapy Research. This is a final draft version of an article whose final and definitive form has been published by Taylor & Francis. Published in this repository with the kind permission of the publisher.
Objective: This case study examined reflexivity and the assimilation of problematic experiences, especially its progress within and between the Assimilation of Problematic Experiences Scale (APES) Stages 2–3, in group psychotherapy for social phobia. Method: The data consisted of all of one client's turns expressing the two voices of her main problematic experience in 12 sessions, and all replies by the therapist in direct connection to them. The client's utterances were rated on the APES. Results: A detailed analysis of 13 conversational passages revealed that progress in assimilation happened only when the client took a reflexive stance towards her inner experience or outer actions. There were a few instances when she took a reflexive stance, but no progress in assimilation could be noted. A qualitative analysis of three conversational episodes showed how therapist responsiveness facilitated the client's increased reflexivity and progress in assimilation. Conclusions: Reflexivity appears to be a necessary condition for progress in assimilation both at APES Stages 2 and 3, but the model should recognize that reflexivity can appear in diverse forms and at different levels. Therapist responsiveness and sensitivity to the client's assimilation process is crucial for a successful transition from Stage 2 to Stage 3. ...