Disorganised Attachment and its Repair


“In an age in which traumatized clients are often misunderstood, maltreated, or rejected by the mental health system, this book is required reading for every clinician! It opens our eyes to the mind shattering effects of early childhood traumatization that take place

within dysfunctional attachment relationships – relationships in which children are utterly dependent on their caretakers. Moreover, it powerfully describes the way in which clients who come to us for help are caught in an unbearable conflict between attachment needs and the intense fear of entering a therapeutic relationship. Shattered States highlights what traumatized individuals need from therapists in order to heal and what it takes from the therapists to meet these needs, including the ability to bear witness, therapeutic skills, boundaries, patience, kind firmness, compassion, understanding, and the capacity to mentalize.ʼ’

Onno van der Hart, Honorary Professor of Psychopathology of Chronic Traumatization, Utrecht University

ʻ‘I found this work especially valuable because it spoke to two important themes: one about how the early experience of hostility from care-givers causes a type of disturbance in the mind which is profound and long-lasting and needs to be looked for at assessment: but also about the importance of using psychological techniques that speak to the meaning of experience, irrespective of diagnosis. This may mean some modification of traditional technique; but all the authors described clinical material that demonstrated in a most moving way, the need for people in desperate mental states to be listened to as people with minds, not just carriers of disease. As research into these disorders, and their attachment roots continues, we should expect to keep learning new ways of thinking and working with people who are frightened by their own minds; and these authors have provided us with powerful learning tools.ʼ’

Contributors: Brett Kahr, Bernice Laschinger, Judith Lewis Herman, Giovanni Liotti, Kate White, Rachel Wingfied Schwartz, Judy Yellin

About the Editors

Judy Yellin works as a psychotherapist in private practice and is a member of the teaching staff on the The Bowlby Centre’s psychotherapy training. She has a legal background and, prior to training as a therapist, specialised as a solicitor in family law and public law in relation to child protection. She is an associate of Pink Therapy, an organisation offering affirmative psychotherapy to sexual minority clients, as well as training for psychotherapists in working effectively with the LGBT communities.

Kate White is a Founder Member, training therapist, supervisor and teacher at The Bowlby Centre. Formerly senior lecturer at South Bank University in the Department of Nursing and Community Health Studies, she has used her extensive experience in adult education to contribute to the innovative psychotherapy curriculum developed at The Bowlby Centre. In addition to working as an individual psychotherapist, Kate runs workshops on the themes of attachment and trauma in clinical practice.

Price:£ 20.99
Pbk 240pp, December 2011
Cat. No.29610

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