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Title: Acceptance and commitment therapy for borderline personality disorder : a qualitative exploration of the process of acceptance
Author: Cosham, Emma
Awarding Body: University of Surrey
Current Institution: University of Surrey
Date of Award: 2013
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Introduction: The research base for Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) has some promising, though early, findings for treating individuals with "treatment resistant" difficulties, including Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) (see Morton et a1.,2012). Theories of BPD claim emotional regulation difficulties are stable and lie at the heart of the diagnosis, with distress persisting throughout adulthood (Zanarini et aI., 2003). ACT theory posits that acceptance and willingness to experience intense emotions would allow one to engage with a valued life alongside such distress. Theoretically. this concept may present a particular challenge to individuals with BPD, where high levels of experiential avoidance have been found to fully mediate the relationship between BPD features and intense emotional affect (Gratz, TuB & Gunderson, 2008). This research seeks to understand if and how people diagnosed with BPD experience acceptance of intense emotions, and, using pre- and post-therapy interviews, how this may change following a pure-ACT intervention. Method and Analysis: A phenomenological design was adopted to explore if and how participants with BPD experience acceptance of intense emotions. Semi-structured interviews were conducted before and after a 12-week ACT group with a homogenous sample (N::6), and Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (Smith, Flowers & Larkin, 2009) was utilised to explore the process of change.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available