Effectiveness of Acceptance and Commitment Based Couple Therapy using Schema Conceptualization & Gottman’s Couple Therapy on Emotional Abuse: a comparison study on couples relationships

Document Type : Original Article


1 PhD student in General Psychology, Karaj Branch, Islamic Azad University, Karaj, Iran

2 Assistant Professor, Department of Psychology, Karaj Branch, Islamic Azad University, Karaj, Iran

3 Assistant Professor, Department of Psychology, Al-Zahra University, Tehran, Iran

4 Assistant Professor, Department of Psychology, Astara Branch, Islamic Azad University, Guilan, Iran


Introduction:  Emotional abuse as a suffer related to couples' interactions is associated with psychological problems. The aim of this study was to compare the effectiveness of  acceptance and commitment  based couple therapy using schema conceptualization, and Guttman couple therapy on emotional abuse in couples' relationships.
Method: This study was a semi-experimental study with a pretest-posttest design and follow-up with a control group.The statistical population included all couples who referred to Razi Counseling Center in Karaj in the spring 2019. Using available sampling method 30 couples were selected and randomly placed to two experimental groups and one control group (10 couples for each group). Participants in all three groups were assessed using the emotional abuse at pre-test, post-test and follow up stages.
Results: The results of mixed analysis of variance showed significant difference between the mean scores for two groups in the post-test and follow-up stages. The acceptance and commitment  based couple therapy using schematic conceptualization reduced all components of emotional abuse (p < 0.001). The Gottman couple therapy reduced the components of verbal abuse/criticism (p < 0.05), neglect/withdrawal and domination (p < 0.001) as well. No significant difference observed for two therapies effects on components of emotional abuse.
Conclusion: Both treatments were effective and can be used to reduce a couple's emotional abuse.


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