Format of Original
Taylor & Francis (Routledge)
Twelve adult clients described the role of religion and spirituality in their lives and in therapy as a whole, as well as their specific experiences of discussing religious-spiritual topics in individual outpatient psychotherapy with nonreligiously affiliated therapists. Data were analyzed using Consensual Qualitative Research (CQR; Hill, Thompson, & Williams, 1997). Results indicated that clients were regularly involved in religious-spiritual activities, usually did not know the religious-spiritual orientation of their therapists, but often found them open to such discussions. Specific helpful discussions of religion-spirituality were often begun by clients in the 1st year of therapy, were related to clients' presenting concerns, were facilitated by therapists' openness, and yielded positive effects. Specific unhelpful discussions were raised equally by clients and therapists early in therapy, made clients feel judged, and evoked negative effects. Implications for practice and research are addressed.