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Filial therapy: Helping children and new carers to form secure attachment relationships

Ryan, V. (2007) Filial therapy: Helping children and new carers to form secure attachment relationships. British Journal of Social Work, 37 (4). pp. 643-657. ISSN 0045-3102

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This article discusses a method of combined play therapy/family therapy for looked after and late adopted children and their carers, namely Filial Therapy. Recently introduced into the UK, Filial Therapy’s well-developed practice base and growing body of research findings in North American are presented here. The rationale for employing the method of non-directive play therapy, on which Filial Therapy is based, with children who have been maltreated is outlined. Case vignettes are used to demonstrate that Filial Therapy is suitable for using with children who have multiple problems, since it is attachment oriented as well as able to help children address their traumatic, abusive memories and emotional defences through play. Filial Therapy also helps carers develop stronger and more adaptive relationships with their children, reducing their stress levels and heightening their care-giving responses. Filial Therapy seems highly viable as a robust, cost-effective, treatment strategy to strengthen new and troubled placements. However, there remain important questions to be addressed via future research in the UK.

Item Type: Article
Institution: The University of York
Academic Units: The University of York > Social Policy and Social Work (York)
Depositing User: York RAE Import
Date Deposited: 17 Jul 2009 13:40
Last Modified: 17 Jul 2009 13:40
Published Version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/bjsw/bch331
Status: Published
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Identification Number: 10.1093/bjsw/bch331
URI: http://eprints.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/5762

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