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J Marital Fam Ther. 1998 Oct;24(4):437-55.

Acceptance versus change interventions in behavioral couple therapy: impact on couples' in-session communication.

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Department of Psychology, University of Washington 61820, USA.


Integrative Behavioral Couple Therapy (IBCT) attempts to improve Traditional Behavioral Couple Therapy (TBCT) by incorporating an emphasis on promoting acceptance into TBCT's emphasis on behavioral change. This study examined changes in couples' communication over the course of IBCT and TBCT. Early, middle, and late sessions were coded to measure couples' communication of acceptance. Results showed that IBCT couples expressed more nonblaming descriptions of problems and more soft emotions than TBCT couples during late stages of therapy. IBCT couples significantly increased their nonblaming description of problems and significantly decreased their expressions of hard emotions and their problematic communication over time. Results support the hypothesis that structural differences between the therapies affect initial levels of emotional expression in session. Increases in nonblaming descriptions of problems were significantly correlated with increases in marital satisfaction.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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