The Emergence of Shame in Counselling and Clinical Psychology Supervision: A Narrative Analysis

Prof Doc Thesis

Moran, M. 2017. The Emergence of Shame in Counselling and Clinical Psychology Supervision: A Narrative Analysis. Prof Doc Thesis University of East London Psychology
AuthorsMoran, M.
TypeProf Doc Thesis

Theoretical research demonstrates that
shame is inevitable in supervision as a
consequence of exposing one’s clinical
errors and personal limitations whilst
being evaluated. Despite this, shame in
supervision has been inadequately
addressed in the past. Previous research
on the subject has also been mainly quantitative in nature. The present study
employs a qualitative approach and a
narrative research design in order to
capture the experiences of the
participants. This approach, which is
more open and meaning-oriented than
quantitative research, seemed best
suited to investigating a concept that is
both elusive and difficult to define. Semistructured
interviews with six qualified
psychologists (four clinical psychologists
and two counselling psychologists; five
females, one male) were conducted to
gather narrative data. Results of the
analysis are presented individually to
represent the distinctive features of
participants’ experiences and narratives.
In addition, a content analysis identified
three overarching themes common to all
participants: unwanted identities, power
dynamics and narcissistic vulnerabilities.
Discussion focus on these themes all of
which contribute to the emergence of
shame. The analysis suggests that
shame arises in interaction as a sudden,
debilitating force when there is perceived or actual negative judgement of the self
by others. The narratives highlight that
the participants’ stories remain
unresolved, primarily as a consequence
of the difficulty of speaking about shame.
Implications for supervisory practice are

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)
Publication dates
PrintMar 2017
Publication process dates
Deposited16 Jan 2018
Publisher's version
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