This groundbreaking volume presents a framework for understanding personality disorders in children, distinguishing them from more frequently diagnosed problems, and delivering effective interventions. Efrain Bleiberg draws on extensive clinical experience and cutting-edge neurobiological research to illuminate how specific personality disorders develop when children--and caregivers--become trapped in rigid, maladaptive patterns of feeling, coping, and relating. Strategies are described for integrating individual psychotherapy, family treatment, and pharmacotherapy to provide meaningful help to this highly challenging population. With particular attention to building and maintaining a strong therapeutic alliance, the book includes case vignettes and transcripts that bring each stage of treatment to life.
Winner--Gradiva Award, National Association for the Advancement of Psychoanalysis
"Bleiberg has produced a brilliant, comprehensive, and genuinely innovative work. Presenting an integrated framework for treatment of a complex population of young people, this book retains the most important aspects of the old while presenting exhilarating new perspectives and powerful technical innovations. It offers a rare combination of originality, breadth, conceptual coherence, and clinical wisdom. An immensely valuable and lasting contribution."--Peter Fonagy, PhD, FBA, University of London and The Menninger Clinic
"Drawing on the clinical wisdom of psychoanalysis, and blending it with current progress in developmental science, this book reminds us that personality can become disordered at a very early age, with devastating consequences. Treatment requires the skillful blending of a multiplicity of intervention approaches, centered on the therapeutic relationship. This book demonstrates--in the best Menninger tradition--how we can approach such problems effectively from a modern developmental perspective."--Hans Steiner, MD, Stanford University School of Medicine
"This rewarding text offers practical strategies for clinical work with children and adolescents imprisoned by severe personality disturbances. Bleiberg provides a unique synthesis and application of current thinking about development and interpersonal relationships, incorporating attachment research as well as exciting recent neurobiological findings. In doing so, he lays the foundations for psychotherapeutic and psychopharmacological interventions that can help young people achieve a more reflective and interpersonally rewarding way of living. The book is comprehensive in its discussion of the phases of treatment, and offers insightful perspectives on crucial countertransference issues. Bleiberg has made an important contribution to theory and practice. I highly recommend this book."--Daniel J. Siegel, MD, Department of Psychiatry, UCLA School of Medicine
"A feast of ideas and possibilities....Any therapist who works with children with serious problems...will be enriched by reading it."
— Psychologist-Psychoanalyst APA Division 39 Newsletter, February 2004
"This excellent book provides insight into the formation of personality disorders in children. It is useful for the clinician, providing techniques to use in therapy to help the child or adolescent develop meaningful relationships."
— Doody's Electronic Journal, February 2004
About the Author:
Efrain Bleiberg, MD, is currently Professor and Vice Chairman, Menninger Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Baylor College of Medicine, and Director of the Department's Division of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. He is also Medical Director of the Menninger Clinic's Professionals in Crisis program and Training and Supervising Psychoanalyst at the Houston-Galveston Institute of Psychoanalysis.