Volume 30, Issue 3 (5-2023)                   RJMS 2023, 30(3): 283-294 | Back to browse issues page

Research code: 01
Ethics code: IR.IAU.SARI.REC.1401.118
Clinical trials code: 01

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Nakhostin N, Musazadeh T, Kiamarsi A. The Effectiveness of Schema Therapy on Intimacy and Communication Skills in Incompatible Couples. RJMS 2023; 30 (3) :283-294
URL: http://rjms.iums.ac.ir/article-1-7849-en.html
Assistant Professor, Department of Psychology, Ardabil Branch, Islamic Azad University, Ardabil, Iran , tavakkol.mousazadeh@gmail.com
Abstract:   (450 Views)
Background & Aims: The social developments of the past decades at the global level have faced the family system with new and diverse changes, challenges, issues, and needs. During this period, the family has been increasingly threatened by multiple and complex causes and factors. When the functions of the family, such as biological, social, cognitive, and emotional functions are damaged one after the other, its members gradually lose their sense of satisfaction. The gradual decrease in the satisfaction of family members due to incompatibility between couples first causes psychological dissociation and then social dissociation. In fact, the functioning of the family is formed based on the relationship between the spouses, and the conflicts between them cause the family system to undergo serious problems. One of the factors that can be mentioned as an influential factor in the occurrence of marital conflicts is intimacy, which in fact, with the reduction of this factor, the process of incompatibility moves forward quickly, and as an essential factor, it can be paid. Marital compatibility can be more in couples that have a higher level of intimacy. In other words, couples with higher intimacy are more capable of facing problems and changes related to their relationship, and as a result, they experience higher marital satisfaction and compatibility. On the other hand, communication skills are considered to be complex processes that enable a person to behave in such a way that others consider him/her adequate. Skills are the necessary abilities to perform purposeful and successful behaviors. Communication skills are the ability to symbolically and efficiently convey the meanings and messages that a person has in mind. When the couple's communication is of better quality, they can be closer to each other and can share their thoughts and feelings, as a result, they feel more intimate and avoid possible misunderstandings that arise in marital conflicts. They prevent seizures. Various treatment methods have been used to solve marital problems. The existence of incompatibility and unhealthy functioning of the family leads to the emergence of various family complications and damages. Therefore, it is necessary to implement therapeutic interventions to increase the functioning of couples, and one of the most effective therapeutic approaches in this field is schema therapy. Schema therapy is effective in improving the sense of closeness and psychological state of couples, marital relations, communication documents and sexual performance of couples, communication beliefs, and marital compatibility, and reducing the desire for divorce. The schema therapy approach is a fundamental evolution in cognitive therapy. The schema therapy approach was formed and developed at the heart of the cognitive therapy approach, based on the attachment theory. Schemas, as traces of a complex set of cognitions, feelings, and tendencies to react, are placed in the neural networks of the brain based on previous experiences. As soon as these patterns are activated in the later stages of life, people will feel trapped. By presenting the role of schemas and coping responses in conceptualizing psychological problems, schema therapy has been able to play a greater role in explaining psychological problems. Despite conducting various studies in the field of the effect of the use of treatment protocols on marital psychological characteristics, there are still many gaps in this field. Each of the conducted research is limited to certain statistical societies and cannot be generalized to the whole society. Also, the way of implementing treatment protocols may be of different quality, which requires repeating these training and comparing their results to reach the final conclusion. Conducting the present research can bring significant and interesting results by examining the effectiveness of the schema therapy protocol. Despite the effectiveness of schema therapy in improving subjects' behaviors in various studies, there have been few studies that have been conducted to investigate the effectiveness of schema therapy on intimacy and communication skills. Therefore, the research gap in this field is quite evident. Considering that the compatibility of couples plays an important role in the stability of the family, schema therapy can be used to achieve this goal, so the research question is whether schema therapy can affect intimacy and communication skills in incompatible couples. Is it effective for counseling centers in Tehran?
Methods: It is a semi-experimental research method with a pre-test-post-test design and a control group and a follow-up period. The statistical population included all incompatible couples who referred to the counseling centers of Tehran in the first half of 1400, and by taking possession of the existing files of incompatible couples who referred to the counseling centers of Tehran, the number of 10 couples (10 men and 10 women) who due to conflicts Marital have referred to counseling centers in Tehran using available sampling method and were placed in two groups of 5 couples (5 couples in the experimental group, 5 couples in the control group). The data collection tool was Thompson and Walker's Marital Intimacy Questionnaire (1983), Matson's Communication Skills Questionnaire (1983), and Spanier's Marital Compatibility Questionnaire (1976). In this research, Yang's schema therapy protocol was used for schema therapy training, which was used for three months and in 10 sessions of 120 minutes, as shown in table no. The mixed variance analysis test with repeated measurements was used to analyze the data.
Results: The results showed that schema therapy is effective and stable in intimacy and related skills in incompatible couples. Also, the difference between the scores of all components in the pre-test and post-test stages, as well as pre-test and follow-up is significant (P<0.01), while the difference between the post-test and the follow-up stage is not significant. (P>0.01). This finding means that schema therapy has not only improved the marital intimacy components of couples in the experimental group, but this effect has also been stable in the follow-up phase. Also, the results of Table 6 show that the difference between the scores of communication skills in the pre-test and post-test stages as well as pre-test and follow-up is significant (P<0.01), while the difference between The test and the follow-up phase are not significant (P>0.01). This finding means that schema therapy has not only improved the communication skills of couples in the experimental group, but this effect has also been stable in the follow-up phase.
Conclusion: According to the results of this research, in general, schema therapy has a significant and stable effect on intimacy and communication skills in incompatible couples. In other words, schema therapy has improved intimacy and communication skills in incompatible couples. Every study has some limitations, and this study, like other studies, is not exempt from this case, which can be mentioned as the following limitations. In this research, only questionnaires were used to collect information, and due to practical limitations, interviews were not used to collect knowledge data. Also, the limitation of the sample size and the sampling method inevitably used the available sampling method. The main limitation of this research is that the current research sample was selected from among incompatible couples referring to counseling centers in Tehran, and the generalization of the results of this research to other people should be done with caution. Also, in this research, the possible effect of some intervening variables such as family, cultural, social, and economic factors and personality traits such as mental health or underlying family problems and their role in the research variables were not investigated, which found generalizability. It reduces research.
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Type of Study: Research | Subject: Clinical Psychiatry

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