Exposure Treatments for Anxiety Disorders: A Practioner's Guide to Concepts, Methods, and Evidence-Based Practice

By Johan Rosqvist | Go to book overview

Acknowledgments

Whether directly or indirectly, I am greatly indebted to many people who have made writing Exposure Treatments for Anxiety Disorders possible; behind it stands a substantial supporting cast. Foremost, this book would not have been plausible if it was not for countless patients who have put faith and trust in methods with which I have proposed to treat them. They have also believed in me enough to be willing to face their fears in numerous, sometimes initially unnerving, but systematic ways. In their great, commendable efforts to master what has troubled them so, they have allowed me naturally occurring moments to see, firsthand, just how these scientifically based methods work. Changes realized with evidence-based treatments are frequently astounding, if not outright profound. After finishing treatment, patients are often complimentary, using such flattering descriptors as “good guy,” or such embarrassing terms as “miracle.” In their significant improvements they have attributed, mostly erroneously, some part of their positive change to me personally. Although not denying the central importance and significant contribution of the (empirical) therapeutic relationship on optimal outcome (e.g., Ackerman & Hilsenroth, 2003; Horvath & Symonds, 1991; Norcross, 2002; Raue, Goldfried, & Barkham, 1997), I need to report that the treatment provider could have been—and can be—anyone. Indeed, there is nothing “special” or magical about me individually per se. The only aspect that perhaps makes me especially adept at this privileged work is my thorough understanding of the mechanisms of anxiety disorders and how, specifically, exposure-based treatments affect such conditions directly. However, such knowledge is nothing I solely possess, but is instead something that I can, and continuously do, share with anyone who wishes to effectively alleviate human suffering through evidence-based practice.

I am especially grateful to some of my former patients who have graciously agreed to contribute to this book by describing what exactly it is like to undergo an empirically supported treatment program. The importance and central value of this contribution cannot be underscored enough, because this is such a common question from many graduate

-xv-

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