Attachment Theory in Clinical Work with Children

Bridging the Gap between Research and Practice

Edited by David Oppenheim and Douglas F. Goldsmith

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Hardcover
March 8, 2007
ISBN 9781593854485
Price: $81.00
256 Pages
Size: 6" x 9"
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March 3, 2011
ISBN 9781609184827
Price: $31.00
256 Pages
Size: 6" x 9"
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March 1, 2011
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256 Pages
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Attachment research has tremendous potential for helping clinicians understand what happens when parent–child bonds are disrupted, and what can be done to help. Yet there remains a large gap between theory and practice in this area. This book reviews what is known about attachment and translates it into practical guidelines for therapeutic work. Leading scientist-practitioners present innovative strategies for assessing and intervening in parent–child relationship problems; helping young children recover from maltreatment or trauma; and promoting healthy development in adoptive and foster families. Detailed case material in every chapter illustrates the applications of research-based concepts and tools in real-world clinical practice.

“Readers will gain a broad understanding of current research and principles in working with parents and children who demonstrate attachment disturbances....Anyone interested in the field of attachment and clinical work will find this book a useful introduction to the application of attachment theory and research, and its impact on the evolution of clinical practice in this field. In this book, Oppenheim and Goldsmith provide a much-needed contribution to the field of attachment and clinical work through this well-written synthesis of pioneering work by recognized and important authors.”

Clinical Social Work Journal


“The chapters have an array of well-known and well-established academics and clinicians, among them Oppenheim, Zeanah, Steele, Hodges, Lieberman, and Goldsmith. It is an important book...I recommend this book...to anyone involved in facilitating good enough parenting, working in the field of psychotherapy, with under-5s, or working with foster carers and adopters. This is a useful book provoking much thought, resonating with one's own knowledge and experience and opening up ideas about how theory can be transferred to treatment approaches.”

Child and Adolescent Mental Health Journal


“Focuses on bridging the gap between attachment research and clinical practice. The editors have gathered prominent contributions, original research ideas, and concepts from leading attachment researchers and clinicians.”

Journal of Contemporary Social Services


“Oppenheim and Goldsmith offer clinicians who assist children and families a useful lens to inform their work. The chapters contain a solid theoretical basis for the recommended assessment and intervention techniques, as well as rich representative dialogues and masterful conceptualizations using attachment theory.”

PsycCRITIQUES


“This invaluable presentation of cutting-edge clinical applications, seamlessly integrated with the most recent research data, is a remarkable achievement. It is a highly convincing testament to the profound relevance of attachment theory for therapeutic work and prevention.”

—Peter Fonagy, OBE, FMedSci, FBA, FAcSS, Head, Division of Psychology and Language Sciences, University College London, United Kingdom; Chief Executive, Anna Freud Centre


“This groundbreaking volume brings the ideal of a scientifically informed dynamic psychotherapy practice a step nearer. Cutting-edge clinician-researchers, backed by a sophisticated array of evidence on the assessment and therapy of children and their parents, show how the universal psychotherapeutic values of mentalization, boundedness, and building on strengths can enhance security and happiness. This moving work is essential reading for child psychotherapists and trainees, and I strongly recommend it for all therapists who are open to the continuing impact of attachment theory on our discipline.”

—Jeremy Holmes MD, FRCPsych, School of Psychology, University of Exeter, United Kingdom


Attachment Theory in Clinical Work with Children jumps right into the real world of clinical practice. The balance between practice and theory is rarely so well equilibrated. Each chapter reveals clinical reality in a different context, with a different population, and with a fresh theme. This book will be essential reading for therapists from all schools, for students, and for all interested in development.”

—Daniel N. Stern, MD, Department of Psychiatry, Weill Medical College of Cornell University

Table of Contents

I. Clinical Use of Attachment Research Assessments

1. Constructing a Relationship Formulation for Mother and Child: Clinical Application of the Working Model of the Child Interview, Charles H. Zeanah

2. Keeping the Inner World of the Child in Mind: Using the Insightfulness Assessment with Mothers in a Therapeutic Preschool, Nina Koren-Karie, David Oppenheim, and Douglas F. Goldsmith

3. Intervening with Maltreated Children and Their Adoptive Families: Identifying Attachment-Facilitative Behavior, Miriam Steele, Jill Hodges, Jeanne Kaniuk, Howard Steele, Debra D'Agostino, Inga Blom, Saul Hillman, and Kay Henderson

4. The Role of Caregiver Commitment in Foster Care: Insights from the This Is My Baby Interview, Mary Dozier, Damion Grasso, Oliver Lindhiem, and Erin Lewis

5. Parental Resolution of the Child's Diagnosis and the Parent–Child Relationship: Insights from the Reaction to Diagnosis Interview, David Oppenheim, Smadar Dolev, Nina Koren-Karie, Efrat Sher-Censor, Nurit Yirmiya, and Shahaf Salomon

II. Attachment Theory and Psychotherapy

6. Attachment and Trauma: An Integrated Approach to Treating Young Children Exposed to Family Violence, Amy L. Busch and Alicia F. Lieberman

7. The Circle of Security Project: A Case Study—"It Hurts to Give That Which You Did Not Receive," Bert Powell, Glen Cooper, Kent Hoffman, and Robert Marvin

8. Challenging Children's Negative Internal Working Models: Utilizing Attachment-Based Treatment Strategies in a Therapeutic Preschool, Douglas F. Goldsmith

9. Disorganized Mother, Disorganized Child: The Mentalization of Affective Dysregulation and Therapeutic Change, Arietta Slade


About the Editors

David Oppenheim, PhD, is Associate Professor of Psychology at the University of Haifa, Israel, and Associate Editor of Infant Mental Health Journal. He has been involved in attachment research for more than 20 years, focusing on the importance of secure, emotionally open parent-child relations for children's development and mental health. Dr. Oppenheim has also studied how secure attachments are fostered by parental insightfulness into the child's inner world, and has applied attachment concepts and methods in research on clinical populations. He is actively involved in lecturing and writing on the clinical applications of attachment.

Douglas F. Goldsmith, PhD, is a practicing psychologist and Executive Director of The Children’s Center, in Salt Lake City, Utah, which specializes in the treatment of families with infants, toddlers, and preschoolers. His work focuses on the assessment and treatment of attachment problems, and he has published several articles regarding the application of attachment theory to clinical practice. Dr. Goldsmith holds adjunct faculty appointments in the Departments of Educational Psychology, Psychology, and Psychiatry at the University of Utah.

Contributors

Inga Blom, MA, Department of Psychology, New School University, New York, New York

Amy L. Busch, PhD, Department of Psychiatry, University of California, and Child Trauma Research Project, San Francisco General Hospital, San Francisco, California

Glen Cooper, MA, Marycliff Institute, Spokane, Washington

Debra D'Agostino, MA, Department of Psychology, New School University, New York, New York

Smadar Dolev, PhD, Department of Psychology, University of Haifa, Haifa, Israel

Mary Dozier, PhD, Department of Psychology, University of Delaware, Newark, Delaware

Douglas F. Goldsmith, PhD, The Children's Center, Salt Lake City, Utah

Damion Grasso, MA, Department of Psychology, University of Delaware, Newark, Delaware

Kay Henderson, MSc, Department of Psychology, University College London, and Anna Freud Centre, London, United Kingdom

Saul Hillman, MSc, Department of Psychology, University College London, and Anna Freud Centre, London, United Kingdom

Jill Hodges, PhD, Brain and Behavioral Sciences Unit, Institute of Child Health; Anna Freud Centre; and Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service, Department of Psychological Medicine, Great Ormond Street Hospital for Sick Children, London, United Kingdom

Kent Hoffman, PhD, Marycliff Institute, Spokane, Washington

Jeanne Kaniuk, BA, Coram Family, London, United Kingdom

Nina Koren-Karie, PhD, School of Social Work, University of Haifa, Haifa, Israel

Erin Lewis, BA, Department of Psychology, University of Delaware, Newark, Delaware

Alicia F. Lieberman, PhD, Department of Psychiatry, University of California, and Child Trauma Research Project, San Francisco General Hospital, San Francisco, California

Oliver Lindhiem, BA, Department of Psychology, University of Delaware, Newark, Delaware

Robert Marvin, PhD, The Mary D. Ainsworth Child-Parent Attachment Clinic and Department of Psychology, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Virginia

David Oppenheim, PhD, Center for the Study of Child Development and Department of Psychology, University of Haifa, Haifa, Israel

Bert Powell, MA, Marycliff Institute, Spokane, Washington

Shahaf Salomon, MA, Department of Psychology, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Jerusalem, Israel

Efrat Sher-Censor, MA, Department of Psychology, University of Haifa, Haifa, Israel

Arietta Slade, PhD, Yale Child Study Center, Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut

Howard Steele, PhD, Department of Psychology, New School University, New York, New York

Miriam Steele, PhD, Department of Psychology, New School University, New York, New York

Nurit Yirmiya, PhD, Department of Psychology and School of Education, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Jerusalem, Israel

Charles H. Zeanah, MD, Department of Psychiatry and Neurology, Tulane University Health Sciences Center, New Orleans, Louisiana

Audience

Practitioners working with infants and young children and their caregivers, including clinical psychologists, psychiatrists, social workers, and counselors; developmental psychologists; students in these areas.

Course Use

May serve as a supplemental text in graduate-level courses in attachment and child therapy.