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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Therapeutic Action: The Experience of Emerging Adults in Psychotherapy
by Krohn, Damon, Ph.D., Institute for Clinical Social Work (Chicago), 2016, 383; 10749333
Abstract (Summary)

This study using psychoanalytic case study methodology was designed to explore in depth the subjective experiences of five participants who engaged in psychotherapy as emerging adults. Additionally, this research aimed to explore the participants’ perspectives related to therapeutic action—or what they specifically found helpful or not helpful in treatment with their therapists—in the context of their idiosyncratic developmental histories and past significant relationships with parents.

I found that, for these five women, while they all seemed to evoke specific enactments in treatment, they generally reported little conflict with their therapists, and had a new relational experience that contributed to them viewing their therapists mostly as good objects: as supportive, available guides who helped them develop self-understanding, and relinquish ties to archaic, unconscious relational models that helped them operate in new, different ways with intimate others. Moreover, they used the therapeutic relationship as a kind of therapeutic scaffolding that served to support their identifying, articulating, and working through parental relationships as part of the developmental task of individuating from parents. These women reported that their experiences within the therapeutic relationship—and how their therapists handled or mishandled the relationship—constituted the most salient factor in contributing to how they viewed therapeutic action, and what they found helpful or not helpful in treatment.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Rose, Scott
School: Institute for Clinical Social Work (Chicago)
Department: Clinical Social Work
School Location: United States -- Illinois
Source: DAI-A 82/2(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Social work, Therapy, Clinical psychology
Keywords: Emerging adults, Psychotherapy
Publication Number: 10749333
ISBN: 9798664746181
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