instagram pinterest linkedin facebook twitter goodreads

A Psychologist's Thoughts on Clinical Practice, Behavior, and Life

Suggested Doctoral Dissertation Topic: Why Do Some Good-Reader Children Hate To Read

I've long been puzzled why some children in therapy who have no problem reading won't spontaneously read or profess to dislike it. Having tentatively concluded that, since reading involves the active use of the self, this creates anxiety for these disturbed children and motivates this resistance. But I've also encountered seriously disturbed children who read many books a week.

 

Certainly, there may be other contributing factors besides psychopathology: whether early-life parent encouragement of reading existed; the child never having grasped the escapist, soothing possibilities of reading fiction; or their over-involvement in another activity such as video games whose obsessive-compulsive elements reduce anxiety and is one reason for their popularity.

 

In any case, this would seem a worthwhile topic for study. And now the idea is yours!

Be the first to comment

The Most Difficult Factor in Treating Children in Psychotherapy

Almost paradoxically, what can be most difficult in treating a child is not the child but their parents' resistance to their treatment which derives from misconceptions: that long-term problems can be eliminated quickly; that the therapist will try to control their lives; or simple jealousy, as when the child values their therapist, or a  Read More 
Be the first to comment

The Problem That Children Suffering With Cancer Have With Friendships

The Problem That Children Suffering With Cancer Have With Friendships

Experiencing cancer is difficult at any age but is particularly difficult for children. So much of how children relate depends on appearance, that a potential friend seems like them, and some medical treatments impact how one looks. Even to the degree that a child  Read More 
Be the first to comment

Is Your Child Autistic Like a World Renowned Physicist Was "Schizophrenic"?

Newspaper and other reports often indicate high rates of autism among children. One, in South Korea, asserted a huge rate of one in thirty-eight, it also including some "highly functioning children."
These provoke understandable alarm for autism is probably the most devastating of all the mental health disorders. It cripples childhood and later adult  Read More 
Be the first to comment

Psychiatrists’ Families Aren’t Healthier Than President Trump’s!

In a well-received book some years ago, a psychiatrist described his mother’s naked body being used as a card-playing table by his father and cronies. In a paper by a psychoanalyst-psychiatrist (Bulletin of the Menninger Clinic, “The Sad Soul of the Psychiatrist,” early 1970s), it was stated that clinicians who treat children do  Read More 
Be the first to comment

Should America Adopt China's Way of Education?

The (September 9-10, 2017) Wall Street Journal's article, "Why American Students Need Chinese #Schools," makes several points: that, in China, the teacher rules supreme over the parent, and that effort and drill are considered the educational pathway to success. There, teachers engage in behavior which would cause their arrest for child abuse in America. Yet,  Read More 
Be the first to comment

Diagnosing Bullying

Though all agree that bullying is bad, its complexity and that of the victim are often downplayed. In fact, bullies may primarily be sadistic, depressed, or anxious; and victims may primarily be submissive, provocative, or masochistic. Varying teacher and family dynamics exist for each, ranging from fear and helplessness, to parents who gain vicarious  Read More 
Be the first to comment

Fanciful Explanations of Autism and Parental Guilt

While parents rarely feel guilty when their child becomes physically ill, this is not true when they develop emotional problems.
Autism is perhaps the most affected disturbance by this attitude for, in its severest form, it devastates family life. Recent infant research has confirmed what clinicians have long known: that the parent-child interaction plays  Read More 
Be the first to comment

Why Some Children Lack Psychological “Sturdiness”

Parents know that infants vary greatly in their “sturdiness,” their ability to tolerate separation from them. Children with extreme responses to separation are buffeted by panic after instances of parental “abandonment” that is manageable for less vulnerable youngsters.
Parental unavailability is devastating for them, promoting clinginess and a desperate need to ensure parental proximity.  Read More 
Be the first to comment

The Similarity Between Dying Schools and Dying Businesses

As a psychologist, I've long found that parents complain most about schools. They are, as institutions, hermetically sealed, uninterested in any opinion that doesn't agree with their own and, when their efforts with troubled children fail (as almost always happens), the parents become termed expert and the school demands that they resolve their child's  Read More 
Be the first to comment