alexa Fears of Compassion in a Depressed Population Implicati
ISSN: 2167-1044

Journal of Depression and Anxiety
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Research Article

Fears of Compassion in a Depressed Population Implication for Psychotherapy

Paul Gilbert1*, Kirsten McEwan1, Francisca Catarino1 and Rita Baião2
1Mental Health Research Unit, Derbyshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, UK
2University of Coimbra, Portugal
*Corresponding Author : Paul Gilbert
Mental Health Research Unit
Kingsway Hospital, Derby, DE22 3LZ, UK
Tel: 01332 623579
Fax: 01332 623576
E-mail: [email protected]
Received March 22, 2014; Accepted May 08, 2014; Published May 13, 2014
Citation: Gilbert P, McEwan K, Catarino F, Baião R (2014) Fears of Compassion in a Depressed Population Implication for Psychotherapy. J Depress Anxiety S2:003. doi:10.4172/2167-1044.S2-003
Copyright: © 2014 Gilbert P, et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
 

Abstract

Background: While psychological therapies for depression have advanced in the last 20 years, still many people respond only partially and remain vulnerable to relapse. Insight into the limitations of our psychological therapies might be obtained from recent research that has revealed, in nonclinical populations, that some people can be fearful of positive emotions especially affiliative and compassion-focused ones. Method: 53 depressed patients completed a series of self-report scales. Results: Fears of compassion, particularly for oneself and from others, were strongly linked to self-criticism, depression, anxiety and stress, and negatively associated with self-compassion and self-reassurance. Conclusions: Since compassion and the affiliative emotions associated with compassion play a fundamental role in emotion regulation, individuals who are blocked or fearful of accessing these emotions are likely to be struggle with emotional regulation and the psychotherapeutic process. Research on the fears of compassion and affiliative emotions suggests these are important therapeutic targets.

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