When to disclose and to whom? examining within- and between-client moderators of therapist self disclosure-outcome associations in psychodynamic psychotherapy

Tal Alfi-Yogev*, Ilanit Hasson-Ohayon, Gal Lazarus, Sharon Ziv-Beiman, Dana Atzil-Slonim

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objective: While previous studies have indicated that therapists’ self-disclosure (TSD) can have curative effects, the contextual variables that may moderate the link between TSD and treatment outcome have not been sufficiently explored. Using session-by-session psychotherapy data, we examined the extent to which within-client distress and between-clients emotion regulation difficulties moderated the associations between TSD and session outcomes. Method: The sample comprised 68 clients treated according to the principles of psychodynamic psychotherapy by 47 therapists in a university clinic. Emotion regulation difficulties were assessed at the beginning of treatment, and functioning and distress levels as well as symptoms were assessed at the beginning of each session. After each session, therapists completed a measure of frequency and centrality of their immediate and non- immediate self-disclosure interventions during the session. Results: At the within-client level, in sessions marked by high pre-session client distress, immediate TSD was associated with a better next session outcome. At the between-clients level, for clients who had low emotion regulation difficulties, immediate TSD was marginally associated with better outcomes. Conclusion: These findings highlight the importance of considering within-client level as well as between-clients level variables when deciding upon self-disclosure.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)921-931
Number of pages11
JournalPsychotherapy Research
Volume31
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - 2021
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 Society for Psychotherapy Research.

Keywords

  • individual differences
  • process-outcome research
  • therapist self-disclosure
  • within and between clients’ variables

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'When to disclose and to whom? examining within- and between-client moderators of therapist self disclosure-outcome associations in psychodynamic psychotherapy'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this