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ERIC Number: EJ989134
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Jul
Pages: 13
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 48
ISSN: ISSN-0022-0167
How Do Therapists Ally with Adolescents in Family Therapy? An Examination of Relational Control Communication in Early Sessions
de la Pena, Cristina Muniz; Friedlander, Myrna L.; Escudero, Valentin; Heatherington, Laurie
Journal of Counseling Psychology, v59 n3 p339-351 Jul 2012
Sequential analyses examined associations between the working alliance and therapist-adolescent communication patterns in 10 Spanish cases of brief conjoint family therapy. Early sessions with strong versus problematic alliances, rated by observers, were selected for coding of relational control communication patterns. No differences were found in the frequency of exchanges, but competitive responding by the therapists (reflecting an interpersonal struggle for control) was significantly more likely in problematic alliance sessions than in strong alliance sessions. Cases in which the adolescent's alliance with the therapist remained positive from Session 1 as compared with Session 3 showed a decrease in the likelihood of competitive symmetry. Notably, when the quality of the alliance deteriorated over time, the therapists were increasingly more likely to respond to the adolescents' domineering messages in a competitive manner. Results underscore the need to avoid competitive responding in order to ally with adolescents in conjoint family treatment. (Contains 2 figures, 8 tables, and 1 footnote.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Spain