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Owens, T.M. (2013). The Need for an Other's Mind: An Innovative Approach to the Psychoanalytic Treatment of Children and Adolescents. J. Infant Child Adolesc. Psychother., 12(1):1-9.

(2013). Journal of Infant, Child & Adolescent Psychotherapy, 12(1):1-9

Articles

The Need for an Other's Mind: An Innovative Approach to the Psychoanalytic Treatment of Children and Adolescents

Terrence M. Owens

Recent trends in the psychological treatment of children and adolescents emphasize rapid diagnosis and shortened treatment time while de-emphasizing a more comprehensive and in-depth understanding of the individuals and their families. Even under optimal circumstances, psychological disturbances in children and adolescents can be difficult to fully comprehend and to tolerate emotionally. Social, cultural, and fiscal pressures have contributed to an era of pediatric psychological treatment that threatens to leave children and adolescents inadequately understood—essentially leaving many children alone with their emotional troubles.

This article advances the need for in-depth, multi-modal assessment and psychodynamic/ psychoanalytic treatment of children and adolescents that is rooted in relational receptivity. Personality development is dependent upon a relational context rather than something that is simply a psychological derivative of biology. Always, an other's mind is needed for a child's mind to properly develop. Psychological testing and conversations with family members, teachers, and other important individuals in a child's or adolescent's life are all considered essential mechanisms in beginning a process that builds a broad and deep understanding of a distressed child. Collaborating as a clinical group is essential in generating the psychological space, emotional tolerance, and creative thinking that is required for comprehensively treating a child and his or her family.

[This is a summary excerpt from the full text of the journal article. The full text of the document is available to journal subscribers on the publisher's website here.]

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