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The Frequently Overlooked Reason Some Kids Misbehave

A New Treatment Offers Hope for the Undiagnosable

Karen Smith • 2/20/2018 • 3 Comments

By Karen Smith - The delicate interaction between the brain and body known as sensory integration allows us to live without being driven to distraction by the cacophony of sensory experience that bombards us every day. But for some children, sensory integrative dysfunction impairs the ability to judge accurately whether the sensation is important or trivial, and therefore, how to respond logically and efficiently.


Taking Charge with Difficult Teens

...And the Four Most Common Mistakes Therapists Make

Jerome Price and Judith Margerum • 2/15/2018 • 4 Comments

By Jerome Price and Judith Margerum - How does a therapist treat a struggle between a teenager and his or her parents? Therapies that advocate support without leadership fail, giving teenagers too much control. There are four common errors that therapists make with teenagers. They are surprisingly simple to grasp, and they always make matters worse.


VIDEO: When Our Clients Help Us Overcome Our Greatest Fears

Child Therapist Lynn Lyons Shares Her Most Memorable Therapeutic Experience

Lynn Lyons • 2/7/2018 • 1 Comment

Not all professional growth experiences come from classes, workshops, and consultation groups. Sometimes our youngest clients can help us expand our comfort zones and teach us more about ourselves than we ever thought possible. In her storytelling piece from the 2017 Networker Symposium, Lynn Lyons shares a moving, often hilarious, story about how her young client helped her become a stronger person and a better therapist.


Finding Strength in the Family Narrative

The Vital First Step in Helping Parents and Children Tap Into Their Resilience

Michael Graziano • 2/1/2018 • No Comments

By Michael Graziano - I've found that preparing clients to become involved in finding their own solutions to their problems is a vital first step in helping them tap their resilience. Resilience-based therapy isn't about giving clients a set of action directions, but rests first on helping them enlarge their own mental framework by looking at the problem differently and realizing that there are many options for resolving it.


Making Space for Race

Creating and Holding Connection with Black Teenagers

Ken Hardy • 1/23/2018 • No Comments

By Ken Hardy - Therapy with teenagers has to be about creating and holding a connection. As a therapist, I'm like a spider trying to lure my clients into a web that will support them. While I try to use the context of racism to help African American teenagers understand their situations, verbalize, and vent their feelings, I also want them to develop inner resources and tools for handling the adversity they face in more useful and productive ways.


How to Get Clients to Do Their Homework

Step 1: Don't Call It "Homework"

Bill O'Hanlon • 1/16/2018 • No Comments

By Bill O'Hanlon - The best way to ensure clients' cooperation is to make the assignments relevant for them. Task assignments are designed to bring about changes in the presenting problem. We try to make sure they are relevant to clients by having a mutually agreed upon definition of the problem being addressed and then collaboratively designing tasks that relate to it. In fact, when the tasks derive from a collaborative relationship, they often don't feel like tasks at all.


Breaking Through Therapeutic Gridlock

How to Respond When Clients Resist Your Advice

Jay Lappin • 1/9/2018 • 1 Comment

By Jay Lappin - As therapists, we need to be open to feedback, even criticism, as a means of deepening the therapeutic relationship. Establishing trust by moving beyond the reflex action of offering a solution and creating a context in which the possibility for transformation is greater than the pull of old patterns is hard work both for clients and for therapists.


My Nightmare Client, My Greatest Gift

Sometimes Our "Worst" Clients Are Our Best Teachers

Martha Straus • 1/6/2018 • 1 Comment

By Martha Straus - My young client, Brian, can reduce even confident mid-life adults to an infantile puddle, one provocative comment at a time. He's a therapist's nightmare. But he’s also the universe's gift to me. He measures my commitment to the work, to him, to my ideas about therapy, to my best self.


The Silver Lining in Failure

Not Every Teachable Moment Has to Be a Successful One

Cloe Madanes • 1/4/2018 • 1 Comment

By Cloe Madanes - The problem with a failure is that one doesn't really understand why one failed. If one did, it wouldn't have been a failure. But I'm not giving up on my toughest client, Bob. There's one strategy I still haven't used.


The Liberating Power of Honesty

What People Don't Know Can Hurt Them. What They Don't Reveal Can Hurt Even More

Frank Pittman • 11/23/2017 • No Comments

By Frank Pittman - When we therapists believe a secret's revelations would be dangerous, the client receives a frightening message about him- or herself and about the world. We may accept our patients and make psychodynamic, systemic or sociological excuses for them, while still conveying that their secret is unacceptable. Thus, while explicitly "supporting" them, we implicitly undermine their sense that they are fundamentally decent, acceptable people.


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