Multiplicity and mutuality in the transition of patient and therapist’s self-states: Comparison of good vs. poor outcome groups

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: According to the Assimilation Model, the self is consisted of multiple internal voices which are sometimes conflicted, or even dissociated, from one another. Thus, a key therapeutic goal is to create awareness and dialogue between a patient’s various internal voices, in order to facilitate positive change. A recent development of this theoretical line suggests that clinically addressing both the patients’ and therapists’ internal voices, and their mutual influences, contributes significantly to the treatment outcome. Current study aims to examine: (a) Patients’ progression throughout treatment in their quality of movement of self-states, from lower levels of dissociation to higher ones of dialectics, and whether this pattern is associated with positive outcomes; (b) temporal congruence in patient–therapist quality of movement of self-states and its association with session outcome. Method: Nine good and nine poor-outcome cases of psychodynamic treatment were analyzed (N = 18) for both the patient and the therapist using the TPA, an expansion of the assimilation of problematic experiences scale (APES). Patients completed the Outcome Rating Scale (i.e., ORS), a session-by-session measure that assesses overall functioning, and symptomatic pre-and-post treatment measures (BDI). Results: A quadratic pattern of change was observed on the TPA of patients from the good-outcome cases: Patients showed more conflict in the beginning, avoidance between self-states in the middle phase, and dialectics towards the end. Additionally, the patient–therapist TPA temporal congruence was significantly related to session outcome of the good-outcome group. Conclusion: These findings emphasize the importance of combining an intra-psychic and inter-psychic set of lenses when inquiring therapeutic processes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)770-783
Number of pages14
JournalPsychotherapy Research
Issue number6
StatePublished - 30 Sep 2019


  • Assimilation Model
  • congruence
  • multiplicity
  • psychotherapy process
  • response surface analysis
  • two-person psychology

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Clinical Psychology


Dive into the research topics of 'Multiplicity and mutuality in the transition of patient and therapist’s self-states: Comparison of good vs. poor outcome groups'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this