Interpersonal Forgiveness in Emotion-Focused Couples' Therapy: Relating Process to Outcome
Article first published online: 8 SEP 2012
© 2012 American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy
Journal of Marital and Family Therapy
How to Cite
Woldarsky Meneses, C. and Greenberg, L. S. (2012), Interpersonal Forgiveness in Emotion-Focused Couples' Therapy: Relating Process to Outcome. Journal of Marital and Family Therapy. doi: 10.1111/j.1752-0606.2012.00330.x
- Article first published online: 8 SEP 2012
- This study was supported by a grant ID# CRF 5202 from the Campaign for Forgiveness research to the second author.The first author is deeply grateful to Adela Meneses for her ongoing love and enthusiasm. A special thank you also to Sebastian Gatica for his support.
The objective of this study was to relate the in-session processes involved in interpersonal forgiveness to outcome. The sample consisted of 33 couples who received 10–12 sessions of Emotion-focused couple therapy with the aim of resolving various forms of emotional injuries (i.e., transgression that violates the expectations of a close relationship, which leaves one partner feeling hurt and angry). The results of the present study were based on the analyses of 205 video-taped segments from 33 couples' therapies. Hypotheses relating the role of three in-session components of resolution, the injurer's “expression of shame”; the injured partner's “accepting response” to the shame, and the injured partner's “in-session expression of forgiveness”, to outcome were tested using hierarchical linear regression analyses. Outcome measures included the Enright Forgiveness Inventory (The Enright Forgiveness Inventory user's manual. Madison: The International Forgiveness Institute, 2000), the Dyadic Adjustment Scale (Journal of Marriage and Family, 1976; 13: 723) and the The Interpersonal Trust Scale (Trust; Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 1985; 49: 95).