Clinical Handbook of Couple Therapy

Clinical Handbook of Couple Therapy

Clinical Handbook of Couple Therapy

Clinical Handbook of Couple Therapy


Now in a revised and expanded third edition, this acclaimed handbook and clinical text provides comprehensive coverage of the full range of couple therapy interventions. Noted contributors, many of whom developed the approaches they describe, combine clear conceptual and historical exposition with hands-on presentations of therapeutic strategies and techniques. Chapters in the new edition adhere even more closely to a uniform structure, facilitating easy comparison of different therapeutic models, and have been extensively rewritten to reflect the latest conceptual, clinical, and empirical advances. Entirely new chapters cover structural¿strategic, transgenerational, narrative, solution-focused, brief integrative, and affective¿reconstructive approaches; prevention and psychoeducation; interventions with families during and after divorce; multicultural couple therapy; and treatment of clients with bipolar disorder as well as other psychiatric and medical problems.


The seeds for this Handbook were sown in December 1975, when I met Neil Jacobson at the annual meeting of the Association for Advancement of Behavior Therapy in San Francisco. It was just a brief conversation, following someone's paper presentation. (Earlier at that conference, I had led a workshop entitled “Misuses of Behavioral Exchange Programs in Couples Therapy.” To my knowledge, Neil was not in the audience.) As a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Wisconsin Medical School, I had recently published “The Effects and Effectiveness of Marital Therapy: A Review of Outcome Research” (Gurman, 1973) in Family Process, and Neil, still a graduate student at the University of North Carolina, would soon publish “Behavorial Marital Therapy: Current Status” (Jacobson & Martin, 1976) in the Psychological Bulletin. Both of these articles attracted a good deal of attention in the marital/couple field, because they were the first to systematically examine the extant research literature on couple therapy. Our overlapping interest in the empirical side of things in couple therapy was the basis for our initial mutual academic attraction.

Our next encounter was in May 1977 at the landmark Butler Hospital/Brown University Marital Therapy Conference (Paolino & McCrady, 1978) in Providence, Rhode Island, at which we were both main speakers. Neil, still a predoctoral clinical psychology intern at Brown, reviewed what we knew about research on couple therapy; I, now a junior faculty member at Wisconsin, offered a critical and comparative analysis of the dominant theoretical approaches to marital therapy. As rewarding as that conference was professionally and intellectually, it was more rewarding personally. Neil and I actually had the opportunity to spend some social time together. We discovered that we had different, but equally quirky and complementary, senses of humor, and that we definitely shared a distaste for received wisdom and reflexive acceptance of mainstream ideas.

About a year later, our provocative debate appeared in Family Process (Gurman & Kniskern, 1978; Gurman & Knudson, 1978; Gurman, Knudson, & Kniskern, 1978; Jacobson & Weiss, 1978), about the then just-emerging behavioral approach to marital therapy. Although a zealous and passionate exchange such as that might have driven many people in opposite directions, it actually seemed paradoxically to have increased our mutual respect and curiosity about each other.

Then, in June 1981, I visited Neil in Seattle at the University of Washington, to spend a couple of days with him and his graduate students. The focus was much more on clinical matters than in our earlier meeting and occasional correspondence. We found during this . . .

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed


An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.