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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Gary B Kaniuk, Psy.D.(Cermak Health Services)
Description: This book describes how cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) can be used with couples and families and demonstrates how it can be integrated with family systems, attachment theory, and neurobiology. The author also explains the role of schema in the family dynamic.
Purpose: According to the author, the book "presents a comprehensive model of cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) with couples and families." It also "gets into the nitty-gritty aspects of working with difficult families who are stuck in rigid thought and behavioral patterns that clinicians often find arduous to treat."
Audience: It is intended for clinicians who treat couples and families, including therapists and counselors, clinical psychologists, social workers, pastoral counselors, and psychiatrists, as well as graduate students and trainees. One of the leaders in the field of CBT, Frank Dattilio, PhD, is on faculty at Harvard University and the University of Pennsylvania, and trained under Joseph Wolpe and Aaron Beck. He has coauthored many books and has presented CBT in countries on six continents.
Features: The author explains the cognitive processes that influence change, especially the schema component. He spends a lot of time discussing how the clinical assessment is conducted and describing various cognitive-behavioral techniques. Other topics include divorce, extramarital affairs, substance abuse, and domestic abuse. Finally, the book includes adjunctive therapies such as acceptance-based techniques and mindfulness. Two appendixes contain a list of various questionnaires and inventories for couples and families and show how to use a dysfunctional thought record. The 33 pages of clinical material, therapist interpretations, and interventions in the case examples in chapter 9 are invaluable for all clinicians, but especially for novice therapists. Many of the other chapters have clinical examples as well.
Assessment: This excellent book, written by an expert in the field of CBT, walks readers through the therapeutic process and provides techniques. The clinical examples are best thing about the book.