An intervention design and outcome study of an expressive therapy group for sexually abused school-age girls: Narrative and metaphor in a group context

Barbara Ann Bryce (1995)

A project is presented of an innovative intervention design and outcome study for a short-term expressive therapy group for sexually abused school-age girls. The treatment design, with its primary intervention technique of metaphorical collaborative storytelling, utilizes narrative from a postmodern perspective along with the expressive arts in the treatment of child sexual abuse. The research design involved single case studies for the 6 participants (ages 9-12) with a cross-case pattern analysis in order to assess psychodiagnostic profile, self-concept, client feedback, and the impact of group interaction on the participants' use of metaphor and quality of self-narrative. Results indicated moderate positive gains for the group across all measures, with a significant reduction in anxiety/depression and internalizing symptoms on the Achenbach Teacher's Report Form, and a significant increase in self-concept as related to popularity on the Piers-Harris Children's Self-Concept Scale. The treatment model was found to be effective for this group of girls, and offers a viable design and comprehensive outcome evaluation that can be applied in a number of treatment settings.