By: Francisco Gaspar Cruz and Laura Essen
As a deeply disturbing and hotly contested subject, our society cannot precisely define child abuse, but we know it when we see it. Indeed, its rate of occurrence, including sexual, physical, and emotional abuse, is all too high. While every expert defines and redefines the parameters of the problem, we are left with one axiom: a child who is abused or perceives that he or she was abused must receive effective treatment.
However, the mental health profession is relatively ill–equipped to work with this particular patient population. There are practically no guidelines to which clinicians can turn for comprehensive assistance in treating abused survivors. This book makes up for the dearth in the literature.
In Adult Survivors of Childhood Emotional, Physical and Sexual Abuse: Dynamics of Treatment, Francisco Cruz, M.D., and Laura Essen, M.S.W., two senior therapists with years of experience in treating this population, give the clinician the tools he or she needs to work with abused patients. In clear prose the authors cover: clinical assessment of adult survivors, a broad spectrum of multi-modality treatment strategies and techniques for clinical intervention (including dynamic and cognitive approaches), transference and countertransference issues, the therapeutic relationship, defense mechanisms, grief work, and special clinical problems in treatment with adult survivors. The book's eclectic approach makes it assessable to therapists across a wide spectrum of orientations.
As a handbook demonstrating useful therapy for those suffering from one of our saddest social ills, it is a book that will make a difference in many people's lives.
Table of Contents
- What is Childhood Maltreatment and What Are the Long-Term Aftereffects for Adult Survivors?
- The Adult Clinical Presentation and Assessment of Childhood Abuse
- The Therapeutic Matrix
- The Therapeutic Process
- Psychodynamic Treatment Strategies
- Cognitive and Behavioral Treatment Strategies
- Abuse/Trauma Treatment Strategies
- Adjunctive Therapies
- Clinical Complications in the Treatment of Trauma Patients
- Special Clinical Issues for the Therapist
- Clinical Case Studies
About the Authors
Laura Essen, M.S.W., L.C.S.W., is a full time clinical practitioner in Miami Lakes, Florida, who
specializes in treating adult survivors of childhood abuse and adult victims of abuse and trauma.
She is the president of Miami Lakes Professional Counseling Center.
Francisco G. Cruz, M.D., is a former staff member of the Menninger Clinic where he also trained in
General Psychiatry and Clinical Psychoanalysis. He is currently in private practice in Miami, Florida
where he is also an Adjunct Associate Clinical Professor of Psychiatry, University of Miami School of Medicine.
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