Contextualist Perspectives in the Treatment of Antisocial Behaviors and Offending: A Comparative Review of FAP, ACT, DBT, and MDT [2020]

This article presents a comparative review of the application of four contextualist therapies in the treatment of antisocial behavior and offending. The therapies reviewed are functional analytic psychotherapy (FAP), acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT), dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), and mode deactivation therapy (MDT). A descriptive and comparative review was conducted through a search carried out in both general and specific databases related to each therapy. We included a total of 44 studies treating any type of antisocial behavior or offending. Results show that these interventions have been used to treat challenging behavioral patterns, inmates’ institutional behaviors, exhibitionism, at-risk adolescents’ aggressive conducts, and offending behaviors performed by juveniles who committed robbery and/or serious sexual offenses. The main conclusions are that the four therapies show very positive outcomes: Although FAP and ACT have been used more sparsely, DBT and MDT have been employed in a larger number of interventions and using more controlled comparative designs. The therapeutic components that seem to be relevant to understanding in a transversal way how changes in behavior are achieved are acceptance/validation of clients’ histories of neglect and abuse and clients’ commitment to behaving toward their valued directions in life.

J. Carmelo Visdómine-Lozano
Trauma, Violence, & Abuse, July 16, 2020