Play in Family Therapy
"At a national conference, I presented a workshop entitled "Do Children Hate Family Therapy?" The attendance was good. Too good. Clearly, the title struck a chord, because children often seem to dislike family therapy. And who could fault them for it? The fact is that many family therapists either exclude young children or do not know how to involve them actively in family sessions.... "This is where Dr. Gil's new book succeeds so wonderfully. By drawing on her extensive training and experience as both a child therapist and a family therapist, she shows us how to use all family members' capacities for expressive play simultaneously. Never before have we been treated to such a variety of family play techniques that are presented in such vivid clinical detail....Her methods are captivating to read about and described with sufficient depth so that the reader can visualize their application in everyday clinical situations." --From the Foreword by Robert-Jay Green, Ph.D. In Play in Family Therapy, Dr. Eliana Gil provides a hands-on guide to a wealth of play therapy techniques for working with children ages 3 to 12, and shows how to adapt these techniques to conjoint family therapy. Illustrating the inexhaustible potential that play techniques hold for enhancing relatedness, communication, and understanding among families, this essential new volume represents a major step toward merging child and family therapy. Chapters in Part One cover the history of play therapy and the integration of play into family therapy. In Part Two, clinical vignettes illustrate in user-friendly detail the application of such techniques as puppet interviews, art therapy, and story-telling. Dr. Gil covers the presenting problems and family configurations clinicians are likely to encounter when working with children. Throughout, the text describes the problems that may arise--such as family members' reluctance to use play--and shows how to overcome them by setting a positive tone and conveying the expectation that families will find play enjoyable and rewarding. Providing clinicians with useful play techniques with which to expand their repertoire of family interventions, this work will be invaluable to all therapists and students who work with children and their families.