If You Turned into a Monster''''

If You Turned into a Monster''''

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by Dennis McCarthy
     
 

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"Draw me a picture of what you would look like if you turned into a monster." Dennis McCarthy's work with distressed or traumatized children begins with an exercise that is simple but very effective: he invites the child to communicate with him in their own way, through the non-verbal language of play.

Using case studies from his clinical experience and with

Overview

"Draw me a picture of what you would look like if you turned into a monster." Dennis McCarthy's work with distressed or traumatized children begins with an exercise that is simple but very effective: he invites the child to communicate with him in their own way, through the non-verbal language of play.

Using case studies from his clinical experience and with numerous children's monster drawings, McCarthy lets the meaningful self-expression of the child take centre stage. He demonstrates that being allowed to play, move and draw impulsively and creatively in the supportive presence of the therapist is in fact the beginning of the therapeutic process. These activities are shown to be more therapeutic for the child in practical terms than the interpretation of the clues it provides about the child's state of mind.

This very accessible book will be inspiring reading for play therapists and other professionals working therapeutically with young children and their families.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781843105299
Publisher:
Kingsley, Jessica Publishers
Publication date:
06/15/2007
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
162
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.35(d)
Age Range:
9 - 12 Years

Meet the Author

Dennis McCarthy is a licensed mental health counselor in New York state and is the director of Metamorfos Institute. He is a psychotherapist working with both children and adults and specializing in sandplay and dream work. Initially trained as a dancer, he weaves the body's innate urge to move into all of his work.

Dennis McCarthy is a licensed mental health counsellor in New York state and is the director of Metamorfos Institute. He is a psychotherapist working with both children and adults and specializing in sandplay and dream work. Initially trained as a dancer, he weaves the body's innate urge to move into all of his work.

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5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
When I saw this book, and read its title, I knew this was an important book. 'If you turned into a Monster' is about that dark side of ourselves that can develop when we are very young children, when we are not able to express our true feelings, whether they be anger, grief, sorrow and the like. How many of us have been afraid of that monster in our children or in ourselves? This book addresses how we can make friends with our monster, and by doing so realize that our monster can teach and help us grow into our true selves.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Dennis McCarthy¿s beautifully written book, ¿If You Turned into a Monster,¿ might seem directed towards professional therapists, but its truths are universal. The wisdom of Mr. McCarthy, his gentle empathy, his reflections on myth, psychoanalysis, Bioenergetics, and his own struggles with childhood grief, will enlighten every reader. In jargon-free language, it explores the inner world of children in crisis, and reveals their incredible capacity not only to survive traumas, but -- with the help of an insightful and caring therapist like Mr. McCarthy -- to regain wholeness, reshaping their inner lives as they draw pictures, tell stories, and build up, break down, and remake their sand creations. We learn the specific cases of children in often drastic situations -- a deadly illness, a parent with AIDS, abuse -- and yet the astonishing feeling from reading this book is of immense hopefulness. Mr. McCarthy sees every child on her/his own terms, and uses play therapy, particularly sandplay, to break free of the inner conflicts that prevent personal growth. As he writes, ¿Using a symptom playfully and creatively is using what the child is bringing with them as raw material for change.... They can be the very impetus for transformation (and) can become doorways.¿ (pgs. 112-113) The fears of children are the fears we all face, and without polemics or accusations, he shows the need for parents to understand themselves in order to better help their child¿s development. ¿In letting children begin to teach us about childhood we can them begin to consider how to better parent and teach the child.¿ (pg. 139) Mr. McCarthy expresses himself with a sense of joy, hope, gratitude, and awe, especially when experiencing the charged, numinous moments when a child begins to unlock the ¿monster¿ inside, and the pictures of ¿monsters¿ drawn by these children are wonderfully vivid and revealing. The lives of the children are the heart of this book. Mr. McCarthy does not pretend to know all the answers. His openheartedness towards children, and their often confused and troubled parents, seems a key to his success not only as a therapist, but as a writer as well. A book of this nature might not appear to be a ¿page-turner,¿ but once you begin, you will not want to stop. It is thoughtful, funny, compassionate, filled with insights, and when you finish it, you will be rewarded with a desire to better understand your own mysteries, your ¿monsters,¿ your true treasures of the self.