Academic journal article American Journal of Psychotherapy

Working with Parents Makes Therapy Work

Academic journal article American Journal of Psychotherapy

Working with Parents Makes Therapy Work

Article excerpt

KERRY KELLY NOVICK AND JACK NOVICK: Working with Parents Makes Therapy Work. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc, 2005, 196 pp., $35.00, ISBN 0-7657-0107.

Kerry Kelly Novick and Jack Novick are child, adolescent, and adult psychoanalysts on the faculty of the Michigan Psychoanalytic Institute, and their book is directed to psychotherapists working with children and adolescents. Using a psychoanalytic perspective, they have written a book whose central purpose is to highlight the vital importance of involving parents in the psychotherapy of any young person. The authors describe how and why parents have often been left out of the psychoanalytic and psychotherapeutic treatment of their child or adolescent. They discuss the need for developing both a therapeutic alliance with the parents and for including them in the management and treatment of the patient to ensure a successful outcome. Enhancing parental confidence and helping parents to see their child as a separate individual are major goals of treatment. The Novicks use clinical vignettes to illustrate their points, and examples of clinical challenges and practical suggestions for addressing them are clear and well described.

The book is divided into eleven chapters. The first two chapters discuss the background and context of the importance of the therapist meeting with the parents of their patients on a regular basis. The authors also describe the historical reasons for excluding parents, including the clinical resistances that may occur in the process of involving parents in the treatment of their child. Chapters three and four are devoted to the evaluation of the child-parent system, and they detail the importance of engaging the parents in the treatment and stress the importance of helping the parents to support the child's treatment. …

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