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Title: What are the experiences of those attending a self help hearing voices group : an interpretative phenomenological approach
Author: Hendry, Gemma Louise
ISNI:       0000 0004 2705 4981
Awarding Body: University of Leeds
Current Institution: University of Leeds
Date of Award: 2011
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Introduction: Self-help Hearing Voices Groups (HVG) have grown in popularity here in the UK, and internationally, since the 1980s. Despite research into the potential benefits of attending self-help groups for other mental health problems, little is known about their potential benefit for voice hearers. The present study was designed to explore the experiences of those attending one self-help Hearing Voices Group in the UK. Methods: A homogenous convenience sample of seven adults aged between 28 and 48 years old was recruited and participants were interviewed using a semi-structured interview schedule. Interviews were transcribed and analysed using Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis. Analysis was conducted for individual participants in the first instance. Following this, a group analysis was conducted across participants to identify master and super-ordinate themes. Results: Six master themes and eight super-ordinate themes emerged following the group analysis. Participants experienced the group as A Secure Base which offered the opportunity for Coming Together to Help Ourselves. As well as benefits of attending the group, participants also discussed challenging aspects to their experience; Threats to Engagement and Vicarious Experience. Participants experienced the group as A Catalyst for Change in terms of social and psychological recovery. Finally, participants talked about the sense of Belonging to a Special Tribe which offered mutual acceptance and social inclusion. Discussion: The main findings of the research project are discussed in relation to existing psychological theories of groups and research into the effectiveness of self-help groups in other clinical contexts. The research adds to the existing knowledge base in terms of exploring how participants developed attachments to the group and its members. Implications for the potential benefits of attending self-help Hearing Voices Groups are discussed. Finally, the clinical implications for Clinical Psychologists working with voices and with self-help Hearing Voices Groups are discussed. The research concludes with recommendations for areas of further research.
Supervisor: Brownbridge, G. ; Collins, S. ; May, R. Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Clin.Psy.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available