TWU Thesis Collection

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Intergenerational voices : exploring body image transmission in the mother-daughter dyad
Title:
Contributor:
Hillary Lianna Sommers McBride (author), Janelle Kwee (thesis supervisor), Marvin McDonald (second reader), Marla Buchanan (external examiner), Trinity Western University SGS (Degree granting institution)
Abstract:
Due to the prevalence of body-dissatisfaction and disordered eating among North American women, this study was designed to better understand the development of young women’s healthy body image, and how their mothers may have contributed to their embodiment. Five motherdaughter dyads were selected for inclusion based on the young adult daughter’s healthy body image. In order to best understand the participants, and empower them through the telling of their own stories, the qualitative feminist method the Listening guide was employed. Through participants’ narratives, voices were identified which spoke of the body (voices of idealized femininity, silencing, functionality, acceptance, embodiment, and resistance) and of relationship (voices of comparison, differentiation, and connection). In these voices, the mother participants spoke about their mothers, themselves and their daughters, while the daughter participants spoke about their mothers, themselves and the daughters they had or imagined they may one day have. The daughters spoke most in the voices of embodiment and resistance, demonstrating how they had come to love their bodies and resist dominant cultural narratives. Mothers were found to have taught their daughters about health and stewardship of the body. The mothers were able to do this in spite of their own body-dissatisfaction. Through relational safety and connection mothers non-judgmentally supported their daughters in non-appearance related domains, while also celebrating their daughter’s beauty.
Discipline/Stream:
Publication Year:
2014
A journey with self-compassion : exploring self-compassion within the context of the Christian faith
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Contributor:
Genevieve Kalnins (author), Derrick Klaassen (thesis supervisor), Janelle Kwee (second reader), Terry L. Gall (external examiner), Trinity Western University SGS (Degree granting institution)
Abstract:
Despite the spiritual roots of self-compassion, the impact of spirituality on the development of self-compassion has not been widely explored. The listening guide method and autoethnography were combined to explore the lived experience of self-compassion from a Christian faith perspective. The participant co-researchers’ narratives revealed three categories of voices. The voices of shame and criticism included oppression, internalized oppression, and judgment. These voices appeared as the participants discussed what makes self-compassion difficult. The voices of love and acceptance included connection, unity, openness, and warmth. Together, these voices were used as participants discussed their experiences of self-compassion. Finally, the voices of resistance included the voices of struggle and advocacy. These voices appeared to facilitate the development of self-compassion. This study offers a deeper understanding of the natural development of self-compassion and of how the Christian faith may facilitate or hinder self-compassion. Implications for counsellors, pastors, and future research are discussed.
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Publication Year:
2015
The Labyrinth of Grief: A Phenomenological Exploration of Turning Toward Loss
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Contributor:
Janelle K. Drisner (author), Derrick W. Klaassen (thesis supervisor), Mihaela S. Launeanu (second reader), Darcy Harris (external examiner), Trinity Western University SGS (Degree granting institution)
Abstract:
This study explored the Existential Analytic grieving activity of turning toward loss. Four women, each bereaved of either a parent, spouse, child, or sibling, participated in one hour interviews. The research question was, “what is the lived experience of turning toward loss?” To understand how participants encountered and engaged with their grief, a hermeneutic phenomenological method was employed. Through lived experience descriptions, eight thematic meaning structures were revealed: (a) encounter with death, (b) surrendering to grief, (c) choosing community, (d) permitting and pursuing grief, (e) transformation of self, (f) rooting in relationship, (g) embracing life, and (h) ground of faith. From the thematic meanings emerged the metaphor of a labyrinth of grief, which symbolized the various paradoxes of grieving, signifying that turning toward loss was essentially spiritual and transformative. In describing how they turned toward their losses, the participants highlighted the inherent relational and dialogical nature of grieving.
Discipline/Stream:
Publication Year:
2017
Lifespan Integration Efficacy: A Mixed Methods Multiple Case Study
Title:
Contributor:
Monica Hu (author), Janelle Kwee (thesis supervisor), Marvin McDonald (second reader), Trinity Western University SGS (Degree granting institution)
Abstract:
Attachment theory and neurobiological research have much to say about the etiology and dynamics of psychological distress. Lifespan Integration (LI) therapy was developed by Peggy Pace (2003/2012) through years of treating adults with histories of childhood abuse and trauma. Since 2003 over one thousand clinicians have been trained in LI worldwide. Growing anecdotal reports of success call for research into LI's efficacy. A rigourous, adjudicated case study research design (Hermeneutic Single Case Efficacy Design, HSCED, Elliott, 2001, 2002) was expanded to accommodate three cases. In addition to the question of efficacy, whether and how LI protocols would be linked with the underlying theory via support in the data was also investigated. The results indicate that each of the three participants experienced significant clinical change and that there was alignment with theory supporting the claim that LI works to foster integration and other markers associated with higher functioning and mental health.
Discipline/Stream:
Publication Year:
2014
Lifespan integration therapy with trauma-exposed children : a hermeneutic single case efficacy study
Title:
Contributor:
Christian Rensch (author), Janelle Kwee (thesis supervisor), Marvin McDonald (second reader), Susan Stephen (external examiner), Trinity Western University SGS (Degree granting institution)
Abstract:
Trauma in children is a devastating reality with immense psychological impact on the child. Numbers indicate that millions of children experience trauma every year. Outcome research therapy with trauma-exposed children is scarce and mostly focuses on cognitive and behavioural changes. Anecdotal evidence suggests that Lifespan Integration (LI) therapy integrates traumatic experiences into other life experiences leaving them feeling more congruent and renewed. In this research study, we investigate the efficacy of Lifespan Integration with children by means of careful examination of one participant. We applied Robert Elliott’s Hermeneutic Single Case Efficacy Research Design (2002, 2014), which uses quantitative and qualitative data to argue for and against therapy efficacy. The 12-year-old research participant received 8 sessions of LI over three months, and data was collected before, throughout, and after therapy. The extent of the client’s change over the course of therapy was investigated, as well as LI’s contribution to the change, and what parts of LI were most helpful in bringing about change. Findings indicate that the client changed substantially over the course of therapy with lasting effects at follow-up, LI was substantially responsible for this change, and the timeline as an LI specific modality helped to bring this change. Details about trauma-exposed children, the theoretical underpinnings of LI, a detailed description of the HSCED procedure, as well as further directions of LI and HSCED are discussed.
Discipline/Stream:
Publication Year:
2015
The lived experience of men in reparative therapy
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Contributor:
William Stanus (author), Marvin McDonald (thesis supervisor), William Dreikorn (second reader), Derrick Klaassen (second reader), Mark Yarhouse (external examiner), Trinity Western University SGS (Degree granting institution)
Abstract:
This study is a phenomenological exploration of client voice in psychotherapy. Five men were recruited from the Thomas Aquinas Psychological Clinic while in reparative therapy for issues related to unwanted Same-Sex Attraction (SSA). Open-ended interviews were conducted by telephone and then transcribed and analyzed via a phenomenological research methodology. Thematic analysis yielded 11 themes which described these men's experiences in therapy and the impact of therapy on their lives as a whole, including domains such as work, relationships, and sense of self. Reparative therapy for these men emerged as primarily about a struggle for healing of masculine identity. Benefits included being able to build better non-sexual relationships with men, becoming more open to intimate relating to a woman, and improving their sense of themselves as men. This research has shed further light on the process of reparative therapy as it is practiced at the Aquinas Clinic.
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Publication Year:
2013
The lived experience of moral injury in the context of intimate partner relationships: A phenomenological exploration
Title:
Contributor:
Sara Kuburic (author), Mihaela Launeanu (thesis supervisor), Derrick Klaassen (second reader), Tennyson Samraj (external examiner), Trinity Western University SGS (Degree granting institution)
Abstract:
Moral injury (MI) represents a unique psychological suffering instigated by one's transgression of moral values, beliefs, and expectations. MI has a serious negative impact on the psychological, existential, behavioural, and relational aspects of an individual's life. At its core, MI shakes and sometimes shatters one's sense of self, perception of humanity, and overall worldview, bringing into question fundamental values of the human existence. Thus far, research studies on MI have focused almost exclusively on investigating MI within the military context, and no study has yet investigated the lived experience of MI. The present study aimed to examine the lived experience of MI in the context of intimate partner relationships. To this end, adult participants who self-identified as having experienced moral injury due to emotional abuse and/or infidelity within their intimate partner relationships were interviewed using hermeneutic phenomenology as research method. Through the phenomenological analysis of the participants' lived experience, six core thematic meanings of MI emerged: (1) self-estrangement, (2) transgressions and discord, (3) sudden awareness, (4) lostness and sorrow, (5) will to change, and (6) the aftermath. Phenomenological writing further elaborated these thematic meanings in an effort to uncover the phenomenon of MI in the context of intimate partner relationships. The findings of this study uncovered the phenomenon of MI as a process of unraveling, becoming and transforming through suffering. The theoretical contributions and clinical implications of this study are discussed in terms of emphasizing the transformative potential of moral injury experienced in relational context. Moreover, this study revealed the importance of self and self-estrangement in the experience of MI, in addition to other key components of the phenomenon (i.e., awareness and agency).
Discipline/Stream:
Publication Year:
2018
The lived experiences of romantic relationships following child loss
Title:
Contributor:
Erin Buhr (author), Derrick Klaassen (thesis supervisor), Briana N. Goff (second reader), Paige Toller (external examiner), Trinity Western University SGS (Degree granting institution)
Abstract:
This study examined the impact a child’s death had on bereaved parent’s relationships with their significant other utilizing phenomenology. The research question was “what was the experience of the relationship with your significant other following the loss of your child?” Semi-structured interviews were conducted with eight participants. Themes included: The relationship changed after the child’s death; Communication was important to the relationship dynamic; Grieving differences existed and impacted the relationship; Specific behaviours were identified that had the potential to facilitate or harm; Individual grief impacted the relationship; Couples’ utilized additional emotional support outside the relationship; Sex decreased. The themes were discussed within the context of the larger bereavement literature which included grieving differences, continuing bonds, and trauma models for couples. Themes were also discussed with regard for how to provide informed counselling interventions for bereaved parents, such as addressing issues that may arise because of grieving differences.
Discipline/Stream:
Publication Year:
2014
Maturity Matters: How Ego Development Helps Chinese-Canadian Biculturals Flourish
Title:
Contributor:
Katherine Halvorson (author), Marvin McDonald (thesis supervisor), Mihaela Launeanu (second reader), Jeffery Yen (external examiner), Trinity Western University SGS (Degree granting institution)
Abstract:
This study explores bicultural identity integration (BII) processes of adult Chinese- Canadians. Research has indicated that BII is generally associated with higher levels of psychological well-being in immigrants. During their bicultural integration, immigrants undergo a significant process of personal development as they mature and become more capable in their new cultural communities. Connections among processes of psychosocial maturity (Loevinger’s ego development), well-being and bicultural identity provide the central focus for this investigation. All questionnaires in this investigation were presented in full bilingual format with both English and Chinese translations for all questions. A moderation analysis examined ways ego development may shape the relations between bicultural identity integration and psychological well-being. Using self-report instruments, data were collected online from a sample of 104 Chinese-Canadian bicultural adults. Results revealed that an overall model incorporating bicultural identity integration, ego development, and a moderation effect significantly predicted psychological well-being, explaining 26% of the variance of psychological well-being for our Chinese-Canadian bicultural sample. Examination of several features of moderation patterns revealed a modest moderation trend involving the blendedness & compartmentalization dimension of BII, p = .053, ΔR2 = .03, in explaining well-being. Although not statistically significant, the trend offers substantive guidance for future research. The bilingual presentation of items provided an environment to simultaneously evoke both cultural frames for participants, as demonstrated in language use patterns and participant comments. This pattern of results suggests that future research is warranted to further explore processes of bicultural integration development of Chinese-Canadian biculturals.
Discipline/Stream:
Publication Year:
2016
Parenting Coordination: Helping and Hindering Factors in the Resolution of Conflict in the Child's Best Interest.
Title:
Contributor:
Marianne C. Cottingham (author), Marvin J. McDonald (thesis supervisor), Bart Begalka (second reader), Jeff Chang (external examiner), Trinity Western University SGS (Degree granting institution)
Abstract:
The purpose of this qualitative study was to explore the factors in parenting coordination that helped or hindered the successful resolution of family conflict in the child’s best interests. The role of the parenting coordinator (PC) is a hybrid role that combines psychology, conflict resolution, and arbitration to help parents who remain in high conflict following separation and divorce. Using the enhanced critical incident technique (ECIT), eight PCs from the British Columbia Parenting Coordinator Roster Society (BCPCRS) were interviewed. The results covered a wide range of aspects of parenting coordination including PCs process for resolving conflict, and the context and dynamics in which PCs conduct their work. This is the first study on parenting coordination in British Columbia; the findings contribute to a greater understanding of the role for both professionals and the public.
Discipline/Stream:
Publication Year:
2018
Peer influence and non-suicidal self-injury in adolescence : exploring the role of co-rumination
Title:
Contributor:
Sarah Lloyd (author), Joan Kimball (thesis supervisor), Derrick Klaassen (thesis supervisor), Jennifer Muehlenkamp (external examiner), Trinity Western University SGS (Degree granting institution)
Abstract:
The main purpose of this study was to investigate the relationship between co-rumination and non-suicidal self-injury (NSSI) in a community sample of adolescents. Analysis of the data from 92 adolescent self-injurers, 51 female and 41 male, indicated that there was a significant, positive correlation of small effect size between adolescents’ level of co-rumination and their frequency of self-injury in the past year. When genders were examined separately, this positive correlation of small effect size remained significant solely for male participants. Contrary to expectations, co-rumination failed to moderate the relationship between depression and NSSI frequency, and stressful life events failed to moderate the relationship between co-rumination and NSSI frequency. Results from further post-hoc analyses and related research on peer socialization suggest possible reasons for these results and future research avenues. The strengths, contributions, and clinical implications of this study are also discussed.
Discipline/Stream:
Publication Year:
2014
Relational dimensions of perinatal bereavement : an actionproject investigation of joint grieving in bereaved parents
Title:
Contributor:
Scott Gallagher (author), Derrick Klaassen (thesis supervisor), Landa Terblanche (second reader), José Domene (external examiner), Trinity Western University SGS (Degree granting institution)
Abstract:
This study explored the relational dimensions of perinatal grieving. Three perinatally bereaved couples each participated in one interview, as well as a follow-up member check interview. The research question for this study was, “how do bereaved parents grieve jointly following perinatal loss?” Data were collected using the qualitative action-project method, and participants were asked how they grieved together for their deceased baby. Joint grieving processes were identified at couples’ initial interviews, and then, following preliminary analyses, were presented back to the couples during the member check interviews for confirmation and alteration. The data analysis followed the protocols set forth in the action-project and instrumental case study methods, combining all data collected from both sets of interviews. Within-case analyses revealed intentional frameworks for each of the couples joint grieving projects, including: (1) Marveling at God’s presence in the midst of loss and the endurance of grace, respect, and togetherness in marriage, (2) Finding each other in the midst of grieving differences to celebrate and honour the sanctity of life, and (3) Coming back into life to find joy and new responsibilities while continuing to mark and honour the existence of the deceased. Joint grieving involved several commonalities between the couples, including re-learning the uniqueness of one another through grieving, interspersing grief within ongoing faith careers, using the safety of the relationship to express painful thoughts and feelings, oscillations between hope and pain, and the ongoing nature of grieving rituals as joint actions. The findings of this study support the application of broader theoretical models of bereavement to the unique context of perinatal loss, as well as emerging constructivist models of perinatal bereavement. The findings also demonstrate the relevance of relational dimensions of grieving for future empirical and clinical developments in the area of perinatal bereavement.
Discipline/Stream:
Publication Year:
2013

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