Grief in Childhood: Fundamentals of Treatment in Clinical Practice
Children vary in their response to the death of a loved one. Some children develop relatively few symptoms or problems, while others face significant or prolonged symptoms, such as posttraumatic stress disorder or anxiety. Similarly, children vary in their circumstances and preferences. Thus, clinicians who work with bereaved children must customize interventions to meet the specific needs of each individual child.
This book presents Integrated Grief Therapy for Children — an evidence-based model for treating bereaved children that draws extensively on cognitive–behavioral, family systems, and narrative approaches to therapy. The model shows clinicians how to assess the needs of bereaved children, treat common distressing symptoms (depression, posttraumatic stress disorder, anxiety, and behavioral problems), and address the grief itself while fostering resilience.
Because emotional and behavioral problems following grief are manifested in different ways, the model allows for flexibility based on the age, symptom presentation, and needs of the child. And because the inclusion of a surviving parent or caregiver is critical to working with grieving children, the model involves the parent in the interventions.
With a thorough literature review on bereavement in childhood, extensive case examples and dialogues to illustrate therapeutic techniques, and over 20 activity handouts that therapists can photocopy and use in sessions, this book provides everything needed to treat bereaved children.
I. Foundations of Treatment
- Introduction to Integrated Grief Therapy for Children (IGTC)
- Risk and Protective Factors, Clinical Presentations, and Treatment Interventions: A Review of the Literature
- Assessing Grieving Children and Teaching Basic Coping Skills
II. Addressing Problems in Grieving Children
- Treating Depression Symptoms in Grieving Children
- Treating Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Symptoms in Grieving Children
- Treating Anxiety Symptoms in Grieving Children
- Managing Behavior Problems in Grieving Children
III. Addressing Children's Grief and Building Resilience
- Initiating the Grief-Focused Phase of Treatment
- Coping Skills for Grieving Children
- Making Memories and Integrating Past and Present
- Fostering Resilience and Concluding the Treatment
About the Authors
Michelle Y. Pearlman, PhD, is a clinical psychologist in private practice in New York and an adjunct faculty member in the Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at the New York University (NYU) School of Medicine. She was the founding director of the Trauma and Bereavement Service and the clinical director at the Institute for Trauma and Resilience at the NYU Child Study Center. She also was involved with the development and implementation of programming for children and families who lost loved ones during the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. Her clinical work and research are specialized in the areas of grief, trauma, anxiety, depression, and positive coping.
Karen D'Angelo Schwalbe, PhD, is a clinical psychologist in private practice in New York. She is an adjunct faculty member of the Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at the New York University (NYU) School of Medicine and an adjunct professor for the clinical psychology doctoral program at Long Island University, Brooklyn Campus. She was previously a staff psychologist at the NYU Counseling and Behavioral Health Service and completed a postdoctoral fellowship in the Institute for Trauma and Resilience at the NYU Child Study Center. Her clinical work and research areas include attachment, childhood trauma and resilience, grief, and eating disorders.
Marylène Cloitre, PhD, is the founding director of the Trauma and Resilience Research Program at the New York University (NYU) Child Study Center. She is also the Cathy and Stephen Graham Professor of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at the NYU Langone Medical Center and a research scientist at the New York State Nathan Kline Institute for Psychiatric Research. Her clinical work and research for the past 20 years has focused on the assessment and treatment of the effects of childhood maltreatment, trauma, and loss across the life span.