Teens Who Hurt: Clinical Interventions to Break the Cycle of Adolescent Violence

Teens Who Hurt: Clinical Interventions to Break the Cycle of Adolescent Violence

Teens Who Hurt: Clinical Interventions to Break the Cycle of Adolescent Violence

Teens Who Hurt: Clinical Interventions to Break the Cycle of Adolescent Violence

Synopsis

"Many books seek to explain adolescent aggression by focusing either on individual psychological problems or on environmental factors, such as violent video games or access to guns. This one takes a crucial step further to explore the complex interplay of individual, family, community, and societal forces that lead some adolescents to hurt others or themselves. Offering a fresh perspective on treatment, the volume sets forth an overarching framework and numerous specific strategies for working with at-risk teens and their families. Drawing on extensive research and clinical experience, the authors identify four critical factors that foster violence among youth: devaluation, erosion of community, dehumanized loss, and rage. Effective ways to address each of these factors in clinical and school settings are described and illustrated with evocative case material." Title Summary field provided by Blackwell North America, Inc. All Rights Reserved

Excerpt

About 10 years ago we began doing therapy with troubled and often violent adolescents. As our work developed we began to receive invitations to consult with schools and communities throughout the United States who were struggling with aggression, bullying, and violence among young people. Guided by the premise that all people have the potential to be violent, the question that most nagged at us was: Why do some resort to violence while others do not? We wanted to understand what factors underpin this problem, and we wanted to develop strategies for counteracting those influences. From the many hours we spent talking with countless teenagers and their families in therapy and with the adolescent victims and perpetrators of violence in schools and communities across the United States, gradually our model for understanding and addressing adolescent violence emerged.

Our model assumes that indeed we all have the potential to be violent, but what seems to differentiate those who actualize this potential from those who do not is the interaction of four aggravated factors: devaluation, erosion of community, dehumanized loss, and rage. In this book we discuss each of these factors, explain what they mean, and outline strategies for how parents, teachers, therapists, and other concerned adults can take specific actions to address and ultimately reduce this violence.

Fifteen years ago, this book probably would not have attracted the attention of most of America. While urban, poor communities of color were well versed in the prevalence, consequences, and need to attend to adolescent violence, prior to the mid-1990s most of America had not yet recognized the seriousness of this problem. When we first . . .

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