Couple Therapy for Military Veterans: Overall Effectiveness and Predictors of Response

Brian Doss, Lorelei Simpson Rowe, Kristen R. Morrison, Julian Libet, Gary R. Birchler, Joshua W. Madsen, John R. McQuaid

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

28 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Despite the numerous challenges facing U.S. veterans and their relationships, there have been no examinations of the effectiveness of couple therapy for relationship distress provided to veterans. In the present study, 177 couples presenting for couple therapy at two Veteran Administration Medical Centers completed assessments of relationship satisfaction prior to therapy and weekly during therapy. Results revealed that the average couple showed significant gains in relationship satisfaction during treatment (d=0.44 for men; . d=0.47 for women); gains were larger for couples beginning therapy in the distressed range (d=0.61 for men; . d=0.58 for women) than for couples in the nondistressed range (d=0.19 for men; . d=0.22 for women). Rates of premature termination were high, with 19% of couples completing fewer than three sessions and 62% rated as not completing a "full course" of therapy. Benchmarking analyses demonstrated that the average gains were larger than would be expected from natural remission and similar to previous effectiveness trials; however, average gains were smaller than those observed in couple therapy efficacy trials. Relationship, psychological, and demographic characteristics were generally unrelated to the amount of change in therapy after controlling for initial satisfaction. However, African American couples showed significantly larger gains than Caucasian, non-Hispanic couples. Thus, though yielding smaller effects than those shown in efficacy trials, the impact of couple therapy for veterans' relationship problems appears to generalize across various demographic, psychological, and relationship characteristics.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)216-227
Number of pages12
JournalBehavior Therapy
Volume43
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 1 2012

Fingerprint

Couples Therapy
Veterans
Demography
Psychology
Therapeutics
Benchmarking
United States Department of Veterans Affairs
African Americans

Keywords

  • Couple therapy
  • Effectiveness
  • Marital therapy
  • Military
  • Veterans

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology

Cite this

Doss, B., Rowe, L. S., Morrison, K. R., Libet, J., Birchler, G. R., Madsen, J. W., & McQuaid, J. R. (2012). Couple Therapy for Military Veterans: Overall Effectiveness and Predictors of Response. Behavior Therapy, 43(1), 216-227. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.beth.2011.06.006

Couple Therapy for Military Veterans : Overall Effectiveness and Predictors of Response. / Doss, Brian; Rowe, Lorelei Simpson; Morrison, Kristen R.; Libet, Julian; Birchler, Gary R.; Madsen, Joshua W.; McQuaid, John R.

In: Behavior Therapy, Vol. 43, No. 1, 01.03.2012, p. 216-227.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Doss, B, Rowe, LS, Morrison, KR, Libet, J, Birchler, GR, Madsen, JW & McQuaid, JR 2012, 'Couple Therapy for Military Veterans: Overall Effectiveness and Predictors of Response', Behavior Therapy, vol. 43, no. 1, pp. 216-227. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.beth.2011.06.006
Doss, Brian ; Rowe, Lorelei Simpson ; Morrison, Kristen R. ; Libet, Julian ; Birchler, Gary R. ; Madsen, Joshua W. ; McQuaid, John R. / Couple Therapy for Military Veterans : Overall Effectiveness and Predictors of Response. In: Behavior Therapy. 2012 ; Vol. 43, No. 1. pp. 216-227.
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