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Shulman, G. Green, V. (2008). Editorial. J. Child Psychother., 34(2):169-171.

(2008). Journal of Child Psychotherapy, 34(2):169-171



Graham Shulman and Viviane Green

This is a general edition of the Journal, which reflects both the range of work undertaken by child psychotherapists and the variety of settings within which child psychotherapists work. Articles on looked after children remain a recurring theme in the Journal, reflecting the significant number of such children who enter into psychotherapy and the complexities involved in their development, particularly as, unfortunately, a number of them have repeated changes of caregivers or placements that break down, or else need to grow up in care. The looked after child is embedded in a network of professional carers and working agencies. In this edition, we are fortunate that two authors, Simon Cregeen and Marigemma Rocco-Briggs, address several of the complex issues involved in the network(s) around the children. Unsurprisingly, the children and adolescents mobilise powerful responses in the networks surrounding them as the issues they bring ricochet within the teams, setting up various dynamics. Quoting Britton, Cregeen reminds us that ‘when family breakdown has occurred, the child may or may not be homeless, but he is psychically unplaced’. A critical task for residential workers, as his article illustrates vividly, is to help the young person feel psychically placed. By extension, the consultant's role is to help recover the place of the child in the mind of the workers. Rocco-Briggs echoes this theme in taking up psychic displacement as the intolerable underlying feeling of no longer belonging to parents whose acts towards the child are too unbearable for the child to bring into, let alone keep in, mind.

[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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