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Keywords:

  • adult survivors;
  • child abuse;
  • emotion;
  • experiential therapy;
  • PTSD;
  • reexperiencing

Abstract

This study examined the effectiveness of Emotion Focused Therapy with 32 adult survivors (EFT-AS) of childhood abuse (emotional, physical, and sexual). EFT-AS is a 20-week individual psychotherapy based on current emotion theory and experiential therapy theory and research. The study employed a quasi-experimental design in which participants, who met screening criteria, were assigned to therapy or a variably delayed therapy condition. Clients receiving EFT-AS achieved significant improvements in multiple domains of disturbance. Clients in the delayed treatment condition showed minimal improvements over the wait interval but after EFT-AS showed significant improvements comparable to the immediate therapy group. These effects were maintained at 9 months (on average) follow-up.