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Psychotherapy (Chic). 2008 Jun;45(2):148-164. doi: 10.1037/0033-3204.45.2.148.

Supportive expressive therapy--Parent child version: An exploratory study.

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Infant Program, Department of Psychiatry, The Hospital for Sick Children.


Currently, there are no empirically supported psychodynamic treatments for disruptive behavior in young children. Supportive Expressive Therapy--Parent Child (SET-PC) is a newly developed brief psychodynamic psychotherapy that focuses on a parent's internal representations of self and others, particularly as they manifest in problematic parent-child relationships. It is a manualized dyadic therapy that uses videotaped parent-child play sessions followed by parent-therapist discussions. This exploratory study is the first randomized controlled study of SETPC. SET-PC was compared with the Incredible Years Parenting Program (IYPP; Webster-Stratton, 2001), an empirically supported group parent training intervention for child disruptive behavior. Treatment completers were 37 consecutive referrals of parent- child dyads (children ages 30-72 months) to an outpatient psychiatry clinic. SET-PC produced treatment outcomes that were equivalent to IYPP. Both treatments were associated with large effect sizes for decreases in externalizing behavior and for the positive quality of observed parent- child interactions and small effect sizes for improvements in parents' psychological functioning. Treatment gains were maintained at 1-year follow-up regardless of treatment condition. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2010 APA, all rights reserved).


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