Publications by authors named "Claudia Capella"

7 Publications

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The therapeutic relationship in child psychotherapy: integrating the perspectives of children, parents and therapists.

Psychother Res 2021 Nov 28;31(8):988-1000. Epub 2021 Jan 28.

Psychology Department, Pontifical Catholic University of Chile, Santiago, Chile.

This study addresses the therapeutic relationship in child psychotherapy, through an exploration of the experience of the main actors engaged in child psychotherapy.

To describe and analyse the therapeutic relationship integrating the views of children, parents and therapists.

This study employs a qualitative methodology, assuming a discovery-oriented approach which draws from grounded theory. Twelve psychotherapy triads participated, composed of children aged 6-10, their parents and psychotherapists. Semi-structured follow-up interviews were conducted (N=36), including a drawing in the case of the children.

A positive therapeutic relationship with children and parents was viewed as a gradually constructed process, based on a positive emotional encounter between participants. It was facilitated primarily by the therapist's commitment and playful stance, the child and therapist mutual involvement, and the parent's collaboration. These aspects entailed a trustful, validating and caring relationship, that shaped children and parents' motivations towards therapy and facilitated change.

From a multiple-perspective approach, therapy was conceived as a relational experience. The development of positive relationships required different and evolving dispositions from therapy main actors. Therapists' genuine feelings and engagement in therapeutic activity seem central, underlining the importance of addressing relational aspects in child therapy research and training.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/10503307.2021.1876946DOI Listing
November 2021

Change during psychotherapy: the perspective of children and adolescents who have been sexually abused.

Res Psychother 2018 Apr 12;21(1):288. Epub 2018 Apr 12.

Department of Psychology, University of Chile, Chile.

The aim of this research was to identify the meanings of psychotherapeutic change of children and adolescents who have suffered sexual abuse and were in psychotherapy. In order to do this, a qualitative study was carried out in which in-depth interviews complemented with drawings were conducted with 10 children and adolescents, aged between 6 and 16 years, who were taking part in psychotherapy due to sexual abuse. The interviews took place between 6 and 10 months after the start of the therapy and before it ended. Thematic narrative analysis was used for the interviews and visual narrative analysis for the drawings. The main findings showed that children and adolescents visualized psychotherapeutic change as a process in which gradual progress is made. The participants notice changes from an initial state of sadness and distress, mainly describing a positive shift in terms of emotional well-being. In addition, in this phase of the therapy only a few participants identified changes in their feelings regarding the abusive experience. The participants identified aspects of the therapy and supportive relationships with significant others as elements that foster these changes. In their view, hindering elements include changes of therapist, legal factors, and not being believed by their family. It is discussed the importance of knowing the children and adolescents' perspective regarding psychotherapeutic change while participating in therapy processes, using multiple methodologies, to generate interventions that suit the needs of this population and match the pace of children and adolescents' change.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4081/ripppo.2018.288DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7451347PMC
April 2018

Introduction to the special section on child and adolescent psychotherapy research.

Psychother Res 2018 01;28(1):1-2

g Child and Adolescent Psychiatry , University Medical Centre Hamburg-Eppendorf , Hamburg , Germany.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/10503307.2017.1380864DOI Listing
January 2018

Meeting in difference: Revisiting the therapeutic relationship based on patients' and therapists' experiences in several clinical contexts.

J Clin Psychol 2017 Nov 7;73(11):1510-1522. Epub 2017 Sep 7.

Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile.

Despite decades of research on the therapeutic relationship and the therapeutic alliance and their connection with therapeutic outcomes (Horvath, Del Re, Flückiger, & Symonds, 2011), only a handful of studies have examined how they are experienced by the therapy participants. The aim of the present study is to describe the therapeutic relationship from the subjective perspective of the patients and therapists involved in 3 clinical cases: (a) a 7-year-old child diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, (b) a 29-year old woman diagnosed with a personality disorder, and (c) a 22-year-old man diagnosed with schizophrenia. We conducted semistructured interviews with patients and therapists that were later analyzed following grounded theory coding procedures (Corbin & Strauss, 2008). The results obtained reveal that the constitutive elements of the therapeutic relationship are linked to 2 dimensions of the patient-therapist meeting experience: the technical and role-related dimension, characterized by relational asymmetry, and the affective exchange dimension, characterized by relational symmetry. The article discusses the possible association between the asymmetrical technical dimension, whose roles are defined by the organization of the helping relationship, and the notion of therapeutic alliance as commonly conceptualized and assessed; on the other hand, the experience of the bidirectional and symmetrical patient-therapist affective exchange is linked with concepts such as real relationship and intersubjectivity.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jclp.22525DOI Listing
November 2017

Editorial: The Role of Play in Child Assessment and Intervention.

Front Psychol 2017 29;8:1098. Epub 2017 Jun 29.

Department of Psychology, Universidad de ChileSantiago, Chile.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2017.01098DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5489621PMC
June 2017

Change during Psychotherapy through Sand Play Tray in Children That Have Been Sexually Abused.

Front Psychol 2017 4;8:617. Epub 2017 May 4.

Department of Psychology, Universidad de ChileSantiago, Chile.

This paper presents the results of a qualitative study on the use of sandplay, or sand tray therapy, in the psychotherapeutic process of children who have been sexually abused. A longitudinal study was carried out with seven participants between the ages of 7 and 10 years old. Data was produced during observation of the therapeutic activity over the course of three different phases of treatment, using a rubric created especially for this observation. Three sandplay sessions were recorded: one at the start of therapy, one at the 3-month mark, and the third and final session after 6 months of treatment. Sessions were then transcribed for later analysis. A rubric was developed in order to help researchers identify central themes, behaviors and content of creative play, as well as the therapeutic relationship. Transcribed sessions and observation rubrics were evaluated using qualitative content analysis, and information was categorized according to verbal and behavioral characteristics of the game. Results of the present study reveal common and transversal forms of playful expression among this group of children shown by their engagement with sandplay. During this activity, participants elaborate personal stories that feature violence as a central theme, often involving aggression between two or more individuals. They also express their need for care and protection and work to resolve conflicts using fantasy. The shifting dynamics of sandplay at each stage of therapeutic treatment is an important finding that reveals the progress made during psychotherapy. In the third phase of treatment, sandplay encouraged movement among children, allowing them to act out meaningful scenarios and create structured situations with positive outcomes. Finally, the value of sandplay as an important therapeutic tool is discussed, primarily its role in supporting processes of change and allowing participants to assign new meanings to traumatic experiences. Its application to the field of clinical psychology, particularly when working with victims of sexual abuse, is also explored.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2017.00617DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5415598PMC
May 2017

Winning a Race: Narratives of Healing and Psychotherapy in Children and Adolescents Who Have Been Sexually Abused.

J Child Sex Abus 2016 20;25(1):73-92. Epub 2016 Jan 20.

a Department of Psychology , Universidad de Chile , Santiago , Chile.

This article explores the process of recovering from sexual abuse according to children and adolescents who have been sexually abused and have successfully completed psychotherapy. In this qualitative study, interviews were conducted with 20 participants from 8 to 18 years of age and then subject to narrative analysis. Results show that participants' narratives of recovery involve an improvement of psychological well-being. Moreover, they feel better equipped to overcome future challenges, feeling empowered and able to retake control of their lives. Factors that support and inhibit recovery are examined, as are developmental differences. Discussion underlines the valuable role of psychotherapy in helping children and adolescents in their healing process, changing the meaning of the abusive experience, and developing new capacities.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/10538712.2015.1088915DOI Listing
December 2016
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