Giving and receiving help

Interpersonal transactions in mutual-help meetings and psychosocial adjustment of members

Linda J. Roberts, Deborah Salem, Julian Rappaport, Paul A. Toro, Douglas A. Luke, Edward Seidman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The helping transactions that occur in group meetings have been theorized to be important therapeutic mechanisms within mutual-help (or self-help) groups. Hypothesized links between giving and receiving help and psychosocial adjustment were examined in a mutual-help group for individuals with serious mental illness (GROW). Participants' adjustment was assessed at two time points and helping behaviors were measured with observational coding of weekly group interactions during the period between assessments. Frequencies of helping behaviors were used to predict Time 2 adjustment after controlling for initial adjustment. Consistent with the helper therapy principle, giving help to others predicted improvements in psychosocial adjustment; giving advice was a unique predictor. Total amount of help received was not associated with adjustment, but receiving help that provided cognitive reframing was associated with better social adjustment. A predicted interaction suggested that receiving help was related to better functioning when members experienced high levels of group integration.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)841-868
Number of pages28
JournalAmerican Journal of Community Psychology
Volume27
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1999

Fingerprint

Social Adjustment
transaction
group integration
social adjustment
self-help group
group interaction
helper
mental illness
Helping Behavior
coding
Group
interaction
Group Processes
Self-Help Groups
time
Therapeutics

Keywords

  • Behavioral observation
  • Group process
  • Mental health
  • Mutual-help
  • Self-help
  • Social support

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Psychology(all)
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)

Cite this

Giving and receiving help : Interpersonal transactions in mutual-help meetings and psychosocial adjustment of members. / Roberts, Linda J.; Salem, Deborah; Rappaport, Julian; Toro, Paul A.; Luke, Douglas A.; Seidman, Edward.

In: American Journal of Community Psychology, Vol. 27, No. 6, 12.1999, p. 841-868.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Roberts, Linda J. ; Salem, Deborah ; Rappaport, Julian ; Toro, Paul A. ; Luke, Douglas A. ; Seidman, Edward. / Giving and receiving help : Interpersonal transactions in mutual-help meetings and psychosocial adjustment of members. In: American Journal of Community Psychology. 1999 ; Vol. 27, No. 6. pp. 841-868.
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