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Understanding and Treating the Aggression of Children
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Understanding and Treating the Aggression of Children: Fawns in Gorilla Suits provides a thorough review of the theoretical and research basis of the techniques and interventions in the treatment of aggressive and sometimes violent children. This is not a dry and sterile academic review but rather one that comes from work directly in the therapy room with thousands of hurting and in many cases traumatized children. One cannot read this book without being deeply moved and touched by the pain of these children and yet also be buoyed by their courage and willingness to persevere against formidable barriers.
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Table of Contents

Chapter 1 Fawns in Gorilla Suits Chapter 2 Developmental Failures and Invisible Wounds Chapter 3 Profound and Unacknowledged Losses Chapter 4 New Findings from Neuroscience: Implications for Treatment Chapter 5 The Psychodynamics of Gorilla Suit Wearers Chapter 6 Risk Factors When Treating the Traumatized Child Chapter 7 Some Special Considerations When Treating Children in Foster Care Chapter 8 Strengthening Relationships With Parents: Identifying the Parent's Struggles Chapter 9 Strengthening Relationships with Parents: Helping Parents to be More Effective Chapter 10 Strengthening Relationships with Direct Care and Instructional Staff Chapter 11 Developing Mature Defenses and Calming Skills Chapter 12 Creating a Therapeutic Milieu For Traumatized Children Chapter 13 Fostering Hope and Resilience Chapter 14 Past and Present Prevention and Intervention Services and Some Suggested Modifications

About the Author

David A. Crenshaw, Ph.D. ABPP, is the founding director of Rhinebeck Child and Family Center, LLC in Rhinebeck, New York. He is Board Certified in Clinical Psychology and a Registered Play Therapist Supervisor. He is the author of Bereavement (now in its third printing), A Guidebook for Engaging Resistant Children in Therapy: A Projective Drawing and Storytelling Series, Evocative Strategies in Child and Adolescent Psychotherapy and a forthcoming book, Healing Paths to a Child's Soul. John B. Mordock, Ph.D., ABPP, was employed by the Astor Home for Children for 28 years. In his last position, he directed the agencyOs community mental health programs, helping to develop a full continuum of services for emotionally disturbed children and their families. He is the author of twelve books, including a textbook on exceptional children.

Reviews

The book's many strengths begin with the authors. Their combined experience includes authorship and/or editorship of at least 15 books. The flow of the book and their engaging style amply convey the benefits of such experience. Also, together the authorshave decades of therapy experience with emotionally disturbed children and their families. The book provides clear guidelines for therapists. There is much to be gained from authors' experience to guide therapists. The book is well written, engaging, and a mix of anecdotes, cases, and therapist material. The authors provide a psychodynamic understanding of children exposed to trauma, untoward parenting, and multiple life events. Clinicians in contact with these children will recognize the endless streamof tragic stories and difficulties in and importance of helping. Also, there are many helpful principles to guide facets of therapy, contacts with parents, and needs of children.. -- Alan E. Kazdin Ph.D., Yale University PsycCRITIQUES Aggressive children challenge us as therapists and human beings in ways that reach deep into our culture and our psyche. David Crenshaw and John Mordock offer a rare blend of intelligent empathy and practice-grounded wisdom in meeting these challenges. Every practitioner, from the novice to the expert, can learn from them. -- James Garbarino, Ph.D., Maude C. Clarke Chair in Humanistic Psychology at Loyola University Chicago Understanding and Treating the Aggression of Children, is a splendid and important addition to the clinical literature in this vital, yet relatively neglected, domain of child therapy. Its excellence lies in its lucid and concise depiction of the ingredients that go into the 'creation' of such children and its forthright yet subtle ideas as to 'how to best treat them.' It beautifully depicts how the insidious 'unholy trinity' of loss, voicelessness, and shame combine to create the 'fawn-like' underlying personality structure of these children. It goes on to address the essential roles of the impact on the therapist of working with these children; the need and methods for how to work with their parents; the way to address these children's inadequatedefensive structures; the importance of milieu therapy in working with the most extreme of these children; the interplay of developmental/psychodynamic forces with the child's neuro-physiology, and, crucially, the attempts to revive a viable sense of hopefulness in these children as the beginning step to better and more secure attachments and empathy. This book should be in the library of any child clinician working with seriously troubled youngsters?it is engagingly written, compellingly astute, and unst -- Steven Tuber I especially appreciated the importance they place upon the development of empathy, the need for a child to keep old defenses until new ones are learned, and their emphasis upon working with a child's family to strengthen the family's ability to care for the child. -- Jeanne Bereiter, M.D. Bulletin of the Menninger Clinic: A Journal for the Mental Health Professions, Vol. 71, No. 4 (Fall 2007) This first of two volumes is a comprehensive A to Z guide for clinicians who work with aggressive and violent children. It covers a wealth of information from understanding the underlying causes through developmental failures and recent findings from neuroscience, along with psychodynamic formulations on through to special considerations to treatment and working with parents. The authors close with a chapter on fostering hope and resilience that gives us all hope in working with such a difficult population. This book makes an important contribution to the field of child therapy and needs to be included in professional and personal libraries. -- Athena A. Drewes, PsyD, registered play therapist supervisor, director of clinical training, Astor Services for Children & Families Understanding and Treating the Aggression of Children, is a splendid and important addition to the clinical literature in this vital, yet relatively neglected, domain of child therapy. Its excellence lies in its lucid and concise depiction of the ingredients that go into the 'creation' of such children and its forthright yet subtle ideas as to 'how to best treat them.' It beautifully depicts how the insidious 'unholy trinity' of loss, voicelessness, and shame combine to create the 'fawn-like' underlying personality structure of these children. It goes on to address the essential roles of the impact on the therapist of working with these children; the need and methods for how to work with their parents; the way to address these children's inadequate defensive structures; the importance of milieu therapy in working with the most extreme of these children; the interplay of developmental/psychodynamic forces with the child's neuro-physiology, and, crucially, the attempts to revive a viable sense of hopefulness in these children as the beginning step to better and more secure attachments and empathy. This book should be in the library of any child clinician working with seriously troubled youngsters-it is engagingly written, compellingly astute, and unstintingly helpful in its approach. -- Steven Tuber The book's many strengths begin with the authors. Their combined experience includes authorship and/or editorship of at least 15 books. The flow of the book and their engaging style amply convey the benefits of such experience. Also, together the authors have decades of therapy experience with emotionally disturbed children and their families. The book provides clear guidelines for therapists. There is much to be gained from authors' experience to guide therapists. The book is well written, engaging, and a mix of anecdotes, cases, and therapist material. The authors provide a psychodynamic understanding of children exposed to trauma, untoward parenting, and multiple life events. Clinicians in contact with these children will recognize the endless stream of tragic stories and difficulties in and importance of helping. Also, there are many helpful principles to guide facets of therapy, contacts with parents, and needs of children. -- Alan E. Kazdin Ph.D., Yale University PsycCRITIQUES

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