Effects of client personality on dominance and affiliation during early sessions of rational-emotive psychotherapy

  • Michael Dempsey
  • Stacy Lamon
  • Patricia Sunderland
  • Raymond DiGiuseppe
  • Russell C. Leaf
Articles

Abstract

This is a study of effects of client personality on interpersonal presentation during early Rational-Emotive therapy (RET). Independent variables were intake scores for clients from the Millon Clinical Multiaxial Inventory (MCMI; Millon, 1983). Dependent variables, from audiotapes of sessions at the Institute for RET (IRET), were Revised Interpersonal Adjective Scale (IAS-R; Wiggins, Trapnell and Phillips, 1988) ratings of clients and therapists. Three commonly adaptive axis II traits (histrionic, narcissistic and antisocial) had significant positive effects on clients, increasing their apparent interpersonal dominance. Paranoid traits, which have previously shown either neutral or positive patterns, mirrored the adaptive patterns. Compulsive traits, which have also been helpful in other stressful situations, seemed maladaptive, however, here. Finally, six commonly maladaptive axis II traits (schizoid, avoidant, dependent, passive-aggressive, schizotypal and borderline) had weak, insignificant effects on clients. In general, these findings suggest that the IRET therapeutic setting may be a psychologically “safe” place for clients. Personality traits that are usually troublesome did not impair self presentation in early sessions of RET, and several usually positive traits appear helpful.

Keywords

Personality Trait Stressful Situation Significant Positive Effect Insignificant Effect Therapeutic Setting 

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Copyright information

© Human Sciences Press, Inc 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michael Dempsey
    • 4
  • Stacy Lamon
    • 1
  • Patricia Sunderland
    • 1
  • Raymond DiGiuseppe
    • 2
  • Russell C. Leaf
    • 3
  1. 1.New York UniversityNew YorkUSA
  2. 2.St. John's University and Institute for Rational-Emotive TherapyJamaicaUSA
  3. 3.Rutgers University and Institute for Rational-Emotive TherapyNew BrunswickUSA
  4. 4.FAS Department of PsychologyRutgers UniversityNew Brunswick

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