"It is refreshing to find child therapists ready to engage with sexually abused children by incorporating trauma theory and research, addressing child protection and seeing themselves as part of a team that includes the carers. The authors provide an overview of phases of treatment, theoretical considerations and essential skills. They emphasis the importance of relationship and explore its impact on the therapist. Their approach is creative and child-centered. Case vignettes, poems and exercises promote empathy with the child's perspective. There is a useful chapter on cultural issues and the needs of children in alternative care.... this is an excellent primer for the child's helping network" - COMMUNITY CARE Therapeutic Work with Sexually Abused Children is a creative and practical guide for professionals working directly with those who have suffered sexual abuse and for their careers. The trauma of sexual abuse experienced in childhood can be severe and enduring. Therapeutic support is offered to help both the child and the family cope with psychological or emotional difficulties both currently and in later life. Therapists must be able to respond effectively to the child victim in a sensitive and timely way which prioritizes the needs of each child. Drawing on their experience as practitioners, the authors explore the reactions which children commonly experience following abuse and examine the tasks of the therapist in responding to them. The book covers: the theory, skills and process of therapeutic work children's coping and defense mechanisms career involvement professional issues Child sexual abuse is an issue which crosses professional boundaries and requires an integrated, inter-professional approach. Therapeutic Work with Sexually Abused Children will therefore be of interest to those undertaking specialist work or training in this area including social workers, psychotherapists, counsellors, psychologists, and health and education professionals.    

Carer Involvement

Carer involvement

In this chapter the task of relating to, and involving, child and carers with the therapeutic process will be discussed. We will be thinking specifically about:

  • the importance of the relationship between carer and therapist, including the formation of the therapeutic alliance;
  • the child's perspective;
  • information the therapist will seek from the carer about the child's history, present circumstances, response to the sexual abuse, and symptoms since the abuse;
  • the relevance of assessing the carers’ parenting skills and their ability to participate in the therapeutic process;
  • typical reactions from carers;
  • the carer's ongoing relationship with the therapist; and
  • the social worker's role.

Initial Goals of Partnership and Liaison Work

A good liaison between the social worker, therapist and other professionals is highly desirable, with agreement at the outset about their respective ...

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