Treating the Abusive Partner : An Individualized Cognitive-Behavioral Approach book cover
1st Edition

Treating the Abusive Partner
An Individualized Cognitive-Behavioral Approach

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ISBN 9781593852078
Published October 20, 2005 by Guilford Press
290 Pages

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Book Description

Intimate partner violence is notoriously difficult to treat, and this promising manual presents the first one-on-one cognitive-behavioral treatment approach for this highly challenging population. Provided are a straightforward rationale and clear guidelines for implementing the authors' flexible four-phase model, which is grounded in extensive research and clinical experience. Detailed case examples illustrate the complexities of conceptualizing individual cases and working with clients to enhance motivation for change, eliminate assaultive and threatening behaviors, alter abuse-maintaining schemas and beliefs, build relationship skills, and reduce relapse risks.

Table of Contents

1. Introduction
2. The Forms and Patterns of Abusive Behavior
3. The Clinically Relevant Characteristics of Partner Abuse Perpetrators
4. Intervention Models and Research
5. Clinical Assessment of the Abusive Client
6. Case Formulation
7. Enhancing Motivation to Change and Engagement into Treatment
8. Relationship Skills Training
9. Cognitive Intervention Strategies
10. Trauma Recovery
11. Relapse Prevention

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Christopher M. Murphy, PhD, is Associate Professor of Psychology and director of the doctoral program in clinical psychology at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County. Dr. Murphy also directs the New Behaviors Program at the Domestic Violence Center of Howard County, Maryland, a comprehensive clinical training, service, and research program focused on perpetrators of intimate partner violence. His research focuses on cognitive-behavioral and motivational treatments for abusive behavior in intimate adult relationships, emotional abuse in relationships, and the links between intimate partner violence and use of alcohol and drugs. This work has been supported by the National Institute of Mental Health and the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. Dr. Murphy has authored more than 40 scientific articles and book chapters on the topic of intimate partner violence.

Christopher I. Eckhardt, PhD, is Associate Professor of Psychological Sciences at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana. His research focuses on the cognitive, emotional, and behavioral characteristics of partner-abusive individuals, with a particular emphasis on anger and hostility in this population. This work has been supported by the National Institute of Mental Health, the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, the National Institute of Justice, and the Harry Frank Guggenheim Foundation. Dr. Eckhardt has authored more than 30 scientific articles and book chapters on the topic of intimate partner violence.


"To date, knowledge and understanding about effective treatments for domestic abuse perpetrators is limited. This book presents an empirically based approach for clinicians conducting individual treatment with this population. The authors have extensive experience working with abusive clients, and their 4-phase treatment model emphasizes the importance of individualized case formulation and the establishment of a collaborative working alliance. Throughout, the clinical examples provided are helpful in illustrating important concepts. This is an impressive book that will prove valuable to both mental health professionals and researchers in the field of domestic violence. The authors have crafted a significant work that will stimulate intervention studies as well as further clinical developments."--Cindy Miller-Perrin, PhD, Social Science Division, Pepperdine University

"This book should be required reading for all clinicians working with intimate partner abusers. It is well documented and, importantly, it comes from two authors with considerable clinical and research experience in working with physically abusive men. The book challenges the usefulness of group treatment, citing the dangers of peer reinforcement and resistance to the therapy process, and noting the very meager evidence for the effectiveness of such approaches. As an alternative, it offers an individualized treatment approach that utilizes case formulation and various means to enhance motivation. An excellent guide."--K. Daniel O'Leary, PhD, Department of Psychology, Stony Brook University

"Treating the Abusive Partner is a significant achievement, combining a comprehensive review of the research on domestic abusers with a clinically detailed, original, and effective treatment model. In emphasizing the many known differences among abusers and the importance of individually based treatment, the book offers something practical as well as intellectually stimulating for practitioners and academics alike. It is a unique and very readable contribution to the field of domestic violence."--B. J. Cling, PhD, JD, Department of Psychology, John Jay College of Criminal Justice and St. John's University, New York