Health concerns and psychopathology are typically viewed as individual issues, yet they exist in a larger interpersonal context. Individual distress affects intimate relationships and partners, and reciprocally, relational factors affect individual health outcomes. In this workshop, Don Baucom emphasizes the relevance of couple-based interventions when one partner is struggling with significant psychological distress such as anxiety or depression, or health concerns such as cancer or cardiovascular difficulties. The approach highlights how to help couples adapt to the stressors that affect them both as individuals and as a couple. Drawing from his substantial research on therapeutic interventions with couples, Dr. Baucom provides a framework for helping couples engage in effective change in response to individual distress. This workshop demonstrates how we can apply couples therapy to problems that have been largely defined in terms of individual distress in order to assist both partners and the relationship.
Don Baucom, Richard Simpson Distinguished Professor of Psychology at UNC, has devoted his career to understanding intimate relationships, and the development and evaluation of interventions to assist couples over the lifespan of their relationships. He has been a pioneer in developing cognitive-behavioral couple therapy and has conducted more couple-based intervention studies than any other investigator in the field. His work has included working with maritally distressed couples, couples experiencing infidelity, and relationship education and enhancement for happy couples. In more recent years, he has developed a wide range of couple-based interventions to address how couples can respond adaptively when one partner struggles individually, either because of psychological distress or health concerns.
Clinical Lecture Series at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Social Work