Association for Behavior Analysis International

The Association for Behavior Analysis International® (ABAI) is a nonprofit membership organization with the mission to contribute to the well-being of society by developing, enhancing, and supporting the growth and vitality of the science of behavior analysis through research, education, and practice.


33rd Annual Convention; San Diego, CA; 2007

Event Details

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Panel #84
Working Towards a Functional Understanding of Alexithymia
Saturday, May 26, 2007
3:30 PM–4:50 PM
Cunningham A
Area: TPC/CBM; Domain: Theory
Chair: E. Terry Mueller (Temple University, Psychology Dept.)
WILLIAM C. FOLLETTE (University of Nevada, Reno)
SABRINA DARROW (University of Nevada, Reno)
MICHAEL J. DOUGHER (University of New Mexico)
MEGAN OSER (University of Nevada, Reno)
Abstract: The focus of this panel will be on understanding alexithymia from a functional viewpoint. Alexithymia literally means “without words for emotions”. It is a clinical term used to describe patients whose reports are boring, monotonous, devoid of dreams or fantasy and lack emotion. The panelists will cover a broad area of topics related to this term including some hypotheses as to the type of environments that would result in the lack of emotive verbal behavior. Clients presenting with alexithymia have diverse backgrounds, including those of abuse and neglect. Additionally, the impact of this type of deficit is vast; clinical presentations include depression, interpersonal problems, somatic complaints, etc. Panelists will also discuss emotionally evocative techniques that may be useful to shape this behavior in the therapeutic environment. This is related to popular topics in general clinical psychology such as sense of self, emotion regulation, and emotional avoidance.



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