Couple Therapists’ States of Mind - thematic analysis of narratives of psychoanalytical couple therapists on experiences of work during the COVID - 19 pandemic
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Uniwersytet Warszawski, Wydział Psychologii, Katedra Rozwoju Człowieka
Specjalistyczna Poradnia Rodzinna dz. Bemowo Miasta Stołecznego Warszawa
Submission date: 2021-11-23
Final revision date: 2022-03-04
Acceptance date: 2022-04-10
Publication date: 2022-04-30
Corresponding author
Karolina Małek   

UW Wydział Psychologii, Katedra Rozwoju Człowieka; Specjalistyczna Poradnia Rodzinna dz. Bemowo Miasta Stołecznego Warszawa
Psychoter 2022;200(1):5-22
Online psychotherapy was a practiced form of treatment long before the COVID-19 pandemic outbreak. Since March 2020 it has become a common way of delivering therapy, posing challenges to all the parties engaged in the process. Therapists working in various approaches and with different groups of patients varied in their attitudes towards online psychotherapeutic practice, and so did their readiness to modify their way of working. The aim of this study was to understand the subjective experience of psychoanalytic couple therapists during the first year of the pandemic.

The study, conducted in qualitative paradigm, was held with the participation of 10 psychoanalytical couple therapists, who take part in supervision conducted by specialists from Tavistock Relationship (TR). It is based on the model of working with couples developed in TR. Ten narratives were collected. The therapists freely shared their experiences of conducting couples therapy during the first year of the pandemic. The obtained material was subjected to a thematic analysis.

Through the thematic analysis procedure, 4 main topics were denominated (Changes caused by the pandemic, Working online, Patients’ experiences, About the therapist). Each of them consisted of several specific topics.

The obtained results are partially consistent with the results of previously conducted qualitative research on experiences of therapists working in different modalities and with different groups of patients. It shows that certain experiences may be shared among professionals engaged in various psychotherapeutic contexts. It was also possible to identify topics specific to the studied group.

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