Disclosure in therapy by clients with eating difficulties: a Q-Methodology study

Spokes, Naomi, Murphy, Karen and Simonds, Laura M. (2019) Disclosure in therapy by clients with eating difficulties: a Q-Methodology study. Eating Disorders . ISSN 1064-0266

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Disclosure by those with eating difficulties is of considerable importance to clinicians and researchers. The aim of the present study was to explore variability in factors considered likely to influence the decision to disclose during psychological therapy by people who experience such difficulties. Thirty-seven participants recruited through a UK-based eating disorder charity completed a Q-sort task. This invited them to sort 47 statements onto a grid reflecting what would make them more or less likely to disclose in therapy. The thirty-seven Q-sorts were analysed using PQ method software. This resulted in the extraction of three factors explaining 41 percent of the variance. Participants loading on the first factor considered maintaining an eating disorder identity as most influential whilst participants loading on the second factor considered the therapeutic relationship as most influential. Those loading on the third factor considered personal readiness and feelings of security as most influential. This study suggests that clinicians need to assess influences on the decision to disclose for individual clients and to modify the early stages of intervention accordingly. Future research could assess the utility of using the Q-sort process and materials in this study as a way to elicit influences on disclosure decisions.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: Disabilities & Disorders (mental & physical) > Eating Disorders
Department/People: Adult and Forensic Services
URI: https://repository.tavistockandportman.ac.uk/id/eprint/1916

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