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Conway, F. Lyon, S. Silber, M. Donath, S. (2019). Cultivating Compassion ADHD Project: A Mentalization Informed Psychodynamic Psychotherapy Approach. J. Infant Child Adolesc. Psychother., 18(3):212-222.

(2019). Journal of Infant, Child & Adolescent Psychotherapy, 18(3):212-222

Cultivating Compassion ADHD Project: A Mentalization Informed Psychodynamic Psychotherapy Approach

Francine Conway, Ph.D., Stephanie Lyon, Ph.D., Madelyn Silber, Psy.M., M.S.Ed. and Shira Donath, B.A

Rates of Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) have been steadily on the rise for decades, and ADHD is currently the second leading cause of childhood disability. ADHD symptoms interfere with school performance, social functioning, can disrupt familial harmony, and often extend into adulthood. Current treatments for ADHD, including stimulant medications and behavior modification, fail to address the inter/intrapersonal dynamics at the root of this disorder. The Cultivating Compassion ADHD Project seeks to look beyond targeted, behavioral treatments of ADHD by adopting a psychodynamic, approach focused on changing the way children with ADHD are seen by their caregivers and by themselves. This project puts forth an alternative treatment approach, incorporating mentalization-based interventions and psychodynamic conceptualizations, and offers a model of engaging family members and teachers in support of the child’s treatment. These interventions, illustrated with case examples, are designed to inject compassion into the child’s world in a way that depathologizes ADHD-related symptoms and fosters insight and self-regulation.

[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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