Systemic Therapy and Attachment Narratives : Applications in a Range of Clinical Settings book cover
1st Edition

Systemic Therapy and Attachment Narratives
Applications in a Range of Clinical Settings

ISBN 9780415416580
Published April 15, 2009 by Routledge
232 Pages 16 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

Professional interest in the clinical applications of attachment theory continues to grow and evolve, and at the same time narrative approaches are also gaining ground. This book explores how attachment-based ideas can be used in clinical practice by offering a practical and sophisticated exposition of clinical approaches.

Bringing together three main systems of thought and psychotherapeutic practice - systemic theory, attachment theory and narrative theory - practitioners are shown how to use these ideas in their work through the integrated approach of ‘attachment narrative therapy’. 

Using clinical examples, the authors provide guidance on how to use attachment narrative therapy in different clinical contexts and with various client groups, including working with:

  • addictions: alcohol dependency and eating distress
  • loss and grief
  • trauma and dissociation
  • love and sexuality: applications with couples.

Systemic Therapy and Attachment Narratives provides practical guidance for a range of mental health professionals including family therapists, child, adolescent and adult psychotherapists, clinical psychologists and social workers, enabling them to apply this approach in a range of contexts.

Table of Contents

Byren-Hall, Foreword. Introduction. Systemic Therapy and Attachment Narratives: Guiding Framework for Formulation and Therapy. Life-cycle Transitions and Attachment Narratives. Emotion Regulation: Aggression, ADHD and Violence in Families. Love and Sexuality: Systemic Therapy and Attachment Narratives: Applications with Couples. Trauma and Dissociation. Loss, Grief and Attachment. Problems of Addiction: Alcohol Dependency and Eating Distress. Formats for Exploration. Reflections and Conclusions.

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Rudi Dallos is the Programme Director of the Plymouth University Doctorate in Clinical Psychology. He also works as a clinical psychologist specialising in work with adolescents and their families.

Arlene Vetere is Deputy Director of Clinical Psychology Doctorate training at Surrey University and a family therapist, registered with the UKCP. She is also President of the European Family Therapy Association.


"This book is a treasure and will benefit all family therapists, researchers and trainees. I learned a lot which has widened my perspectives of the field." - John Byng-Hall, from the Foreword

"Dallos and Vetere bring together systemic, attachment and narrative theories, not with the intention of creating yet another new technique but as a way of broadening how we already work in therapy... I highly recommend this book for students and experienced practitioners. It was enjoyable to read and its format means that it can be used as a valuable reference resource." - Angie Davey, Journal of Family Therapy, 2009

"Dallos and Vetere have authored a cleanly written, conceptually informed, and clinically instructive text that offers valuable guidance for conducting their form of family therapy. Readers will appreciate their concise formulations of family relationship problems, and practitioners will find their recommendations useful in their work with troubled families." - Irving B. Weiner, APA Journals PsycCRITIQUES, Vol. 54

"Overall, this book is one that I will cherish as a clinician as it has broadened my perspective about relationships within families. It is a book that most clinicians who are interested in these theories would find quite beneficial in greatly improving their understanding of relationships as well as positively influencing their practice with families. It is a book that I have a learned so much from and has changed my work for the better and I highly recommend it to other clinicians."  - Cheryl Comiskey, Feedback: The journal of the Family Therapy Association of Ireland