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    Objective: There is a marked difference between the effects of psychotherapy for major depressive disorder (MDD) and borderline personality disorder (BPD), with treatment being less effective for the latter. Considering the importance of the therapeutic relationship in the prognosis of therapeutic results, some of these differential effects might be explained by the distinctive reactions that patients elicit in their therapists. The aim of the present research was to characterize therapists' perceptions of their emotional and physiological reactions to patients diagnosed with MDD or BPD. Method: A semi-structured interview was conducted with 43 clinical psychologists from Argentina with different theoretical orientations. These professionals treated at least one patient diagnosed with BPD and one with MDD during the previous year. Therapists' reactions were categorized through a modified consensual qualitative research analysis. Results: Our findings suggest that psychotherapists feel emotions of dysregulation with BPD patients and sensations of fatigue with MDD patients. Conclusion: The results provide some support for the idea that therapists may mirror their patients' internal experiences.


    Natalia Putrino, Leandro Casari, Belén Mesurado, Martín Etchevers. Psychotherapists' emotional and physiological reactions toward patients with either borderline personality disorder or depression. Psychotherapy research : journal of the Society for Psychotherapy Research. 2020 Sep;30(7):912-919

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    PMID: 31710283

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