Female or male therapists for women with eating disorders? A pilot study of experts' opinions
Article first published online: 6 DEC 1998
Copyright © 1998 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
International Journal of Eating Disorders
Volume 23, Issue 2, pages 117–123, March 1998
How to Cite
Waller, G. and Katzman, M. A. (1998), Female or male therapists for women with eating disorders? A pilot study of experts' opinions. Int. J. Eat. Disord., 23: 117–123. doi: 10.1002/(SICI)1098-108X(199803)23:2<117::AID-EAT1>3.0.CO;2-N
- Issue published online: 6 DEC 1998
- Article first published online: 6 DEC 1998
- Manuscript Accepted: 4 DEC 1996
- male or female therapists;
- eating-disordered patients;
- client characteristics
This study assessed the client and clinician characteristics associated with choosing a male or a female therapist for eating-disordered individuals. Method: Participants were 27 clinicians who worked in the field of eating disorders. They were asked to judge whether they would be more likely to recommend a male or a female therapist for an adolescent client presenting with eating problems, given different clinical features. Results: Considering the group as a whole, the client characteristics that were associated with a preference for a female therapist included a history of paternal sexual abuse, body image issues, and an overprotective mother. The recommendation of a female therapist was more likely if the participants were older, and less likely if they were medically qualified. However, duration of experience with eating-disordered patients was not a relevant factor. Discussion: Future research into the appropriateness of male or female therapists for eating-disordered clients should attend to the complex contribution of both therapists' and clients' characteristics. © 1998 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc. Int J Eat Disord 23:117–123, 1998.