Login (DCU Staff Only)
Login (DCU Staff Only)

DORAS | DCU Research Repository

Explore open access research and scholarly works from DCU

Advanced Search

How do supervisees experience supervision where the focus of that supervision is their work with people who self-injure?

Tooher, Karl Francis (2022) How do supervisees experience supervision where the focus of that supervision is their work with people who self-injure? Doctor of Psychotherapy thesis, Dublin City University.

For psychotherapists, working with self-injury presentations - such as self-cutting, hitting and biting - is recognised as being especially demanding, often leaving the clinician to feel anxious and overwhelmed. Due to the challenges that arise in providing psychotherapy for this client group supervision is considered particularly critical. Nonetheless, there is a dearth of research investigating if, and how, supervision might benefit the supervisee in their work with this clinical population. The aim of this study was to gain an in-depth understanding of the supervision experiences of psychotherapy supervisees where the focus of that supervision was their work with clients who self-injure. An Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (IPA) study was carried out to explore this clinical-supervision intersection. Semi-structured one-to-one interviews were conducted with ten supervisees. Two contrasting superordinate themes emerged: ‘Being in it Together’, and ‘Being on my Own’. The challenges experienced by the participants in their clinical work transferred into supervision as a constellation of needs: To be personally supported with the impacts of the work, educated on the nature of self-injury, and clinically guided. The supervisees valued a proactive, and a steady, approach from their supervisor. The study also revealed that supervisees can be profoundly impacted by their experiences in supervision, which can inspire or disrupt the supervisory alliance. The findings are discussed in relation to the existing literature, and in terms of their research, training and clinical implications.
Item Type:Thesis (Doctor of Psychotherapy)
Date of Award:February 2022
Supervisor(s):Gordon, Evelyn and McElvaney, Rosaleen
Uncontrolled Keywords:psychotherapy; supervision; self-injury
DCU Faculties and Centres:DCU Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Science and Health > School of Nursing, Psychotherapy & Community Health
Use License:This item is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License. View License
ID Code:26583
Deposited On:17 Feb 2022 17:20 by Evelyn Gordon . Last Modified 17 Feb 2022 17:20

Full text available as:

[thumbnail of Karl Tooher 14211319 Thesis.pdf]
PDF - Requires a PDF viewer such as GSview, Xpdf or Adobe Acrobat Reader
Creative Commons: Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0


Downloads per month over past year

Archive Staff Only: edit this record