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Affective-Reconstructive Couples Therapy

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alexandra garcia

on 27 October 2015

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Transcript of Affective-Reconstructive Couples Therapy

Affective-Reconstructive Therapy

A pluralistic, Development approach
The interpretation of persistent maladaptive relationship patterns, having their own source in previous developmental experiences.
Assessment and Treatment Planning: Basic Principles
Primary Therapeutic Task
The therapeutic task of couples therapy can be conceptualized in comprising six levels of intervention.
Reflects on the couples overall level of functioning , this ranges from most chaotic relationship rooted in behavior, to relatively benign or unfulfilled relationship.
Couples enter therapy at varying levels of functioning and may require different initial interventions in a nonlinear fashion.
Sequential Model
1) developing a collaborative alliance,
(2) containing disabling relationship crises,
(3) strengthening the couple dyad,
(4) promoting relevant relationship skills,
(5) challenging cognitive components of relationship distress, and
(6) examining developmental sources of relationship distress.
Pursuing Affective Reconstruction within a Pluralistic Approach
Role of the Therapist
The therapist roles varies across the stages of treatment.
Early therapy the Therapist not only does overall assessments but has an active role , lending his or her own expertise and problem solving crisis resolutions.
Shifts to dual role facilitator and educator in assisting couples during the skill building interventions.
Guide or auxiliary processor, when individual dynamics interfere with the acquisitions.
Affective-Reconstructive Couples Therapy
Thank you!
By: Alexandra Garcia
Juliana Palacio and Fritz Fandino


When relationship is the focus in the therapy , preference is conjoint sessions throughout the course of treatment. advantages being it promotes partners shared understanding of each others contribution and distress.
However there are times when individual therapy is a positive alternative or complements the conjoint session.
Ground Rules
Both partners must agree to format and proposed schedule of the sessions.
Agreement also from both parties, if physical aggression occurs in the relationship , eliminating violence is the first in treatment.
Civil behavior
Therapist enforces an explicit agreement that any communication that occurs "unilaterally"(done without the agreement or participation of other people it might affect.) between either partner and the therapist may be incorporated into conjoint sessions at the discretion of the therapist.
Length, Frequency and Duration of Sessions
Directly reflects on both the complexity and severity of presenting problem.
Snyder and Wills(1989) designed a model stating 25 weekly, conjoint sessions, 50 minutes each.
However, in average couples only needed 19 sessions, roughly 10-15% required less.
Identify relationship concerns at the broader construct level.for example examining more specific facts of couples distress and correlates using a finer grained analysis.
Partners should be screened for individual emotions or behavioral that may affect the relationship causing the couples distress.
Couple assessment should include findings across multiple assessments methods, Including self and other report measures from interview or behavioral observations. targeting problem areas.
Goal Settings
2 parts
Process and Technical Aspects of Affective Reconstruction
Timing interpretive interventions
Linking Relationship Themes to current Conflict
Promoting Alternative relationship Behaviors
Mechanisms of Therapeutic Change
"Affective reconstructive strives to bring critical changes in how individuals view themselves, their partner and their relationship themes.parners gain increased understanding of their own emotional reactivity and patterns of interaction that contributed to their unhappiness."
Initial Goals: Addressing Presenting Issues
"Sydner and Abott(2002) advocate an extended initial assessment interview lasting 2 hrs in which goals are stated:"
1. getting to know each partner as an individual
2.understanding the structure and organization of the marriage
3. Learning about the current relationship issue, the development and previous efforts they have made to address them
4.reaching informed decisions together weather to proceed with couples therapy and expectations from therapy.
Themes that emerge from the assessment process include
1.repetive unsolved issues
2.emotional distance, relentless criticism or physical or emotional abuse.
3. absences of intimacy, passion or joy
4. Third parties involved that bring difficulties . example, in-laws, affairs and children
5. Acute issues, death, substance problem, financial stressors. (Karpel, 1994).
Emergent Goals: Identifying Core Relationships Themes
Expectations and Limits
Gurman, A.S (2008),
Clinical handbook of couple therapy
(4th ed.). Guilford Press. New York NY.
Gurman, A.S (2008),
Clinical handbook of couple therapy
(4th ed.). Guilford Press. New York NY.
Gurman, A.S (2008),
Clinical handbook of couple therapy
(4th ed.). Guilford Press. New York NY.
Gurman, A.S (2008),
Clinical handbook of couple therapy
(4th ed.). Guilford Press. New York NY.
Theoretical approaches
Diverse approaches are used to examine maladaptive relationship patterns, which vary in extent to which is unconscious nature of individuals relationship patterns.
Objective Relations Theory
Attachment Theory
Interpersonal Role Therapy
Scheme Theory
Cognitive Theory
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