Emotionally Focused Therapy With Couples Impacted by Relationship Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

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Tillyer, Justin
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Relationship Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (ROCD) is a relatively-novel and unknown theme of Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) marked by obsessions and compulsions focused upon important figures in sufferers' lives as well as their relationships with them. Despite the documented impacts of this condition on sufferers, their romantic partners, and their relationships with one another, recommendations for its treatment have focused almost exclusively on the mitigation of the former’s symptoms. Accordingly, this capstone research project aims to improve therapists' awarenesses and understandings of ROCD and, thus, their abilities to treat this condition by reviewing the literature on its symptoms, epidemiology, etiology, impacts, and treatment. Additionally, it attempts to enhance couples therapists' abilities to support clients impacted by ROCD by providing an overview of the literature on Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) as well as recommendations for how this modality might best be conducted with this population. Such recommendations include the use of EFT as an adjunct to individual ROCD treatment and specific ways in which practitioners might leverage knowledge of this disorder as they conduct assessment, establish the therapeutic alliance, and consult on process with clients, as well as mitigate potential issues of symptom contagion and accommodation.
relationship obsessive-compulsive disorder , relationship-centered obsessive-compulsive symptoms , partner-focused obsessive-compulsive symptoms , emotionally focused therapy , relationship distress
Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 United States , openAccess