Creative Arts and Play Therapy for Attachment Problems


SKU: 9781462523702 Categories: , , ,

This book vividly shows how creative arts and play therapy can help children recover from experiences of disrupted or insecure attachment. Leading practitioners explore the impact of early relationship difficulties on children’s emotions and behaviour. Rich case material brings to life a range of therapeutic approaches that utilise art, music, movement, drama, creative writing, and play. The volume covers ways to address attachment issues with individuals of different ages, as well as their caregivers. Chapters clearly explain the various techniques and present applications for specific populations, including complex trauma survivors.

Key points

First book to comprehensively cover all creative arts therapies for attachment issues

Practical and clinically useful; all chapters include case material.


Clinical psychologists; art, play, and other creative arts therapists; child psychiatrists; social workers; and counsellors.

Course use

May serve as a supplemental text in graduate-level courses.


  • I. Introduction
  • 1. Creative Arts Therapy Approaches to Attachment Issues, Cathy A. Malchiodi
  • 2. Play Therapy Approaches to Attachment Issues, David A. Crenshaw
  • II. Clinical Applications: Approaches to Working with Attachment Issues
  • 3. Attachment Theory as a Road Map for Play Therapists, Anne Stewart, William F. Whelan, and Christen Pendleton
  • 4. Art Therapy, Attachment, and Parent–Child Dyads, Cathy A. Malchiodi
  • 5. Music Therapy with Children with Developmental Trauma Disorder, Jacqueline Z. Robarts
  • 6. Moving with the Space between Us: The Dance of Attachment Security, Christina Devereaux
  • 7. The Integration of Drama Therapy and Play Therapy in Attachment Work with Traumatized Children, Eliana Gil and Teresa Dias
  • 8. Overcoming Complex Trauma with Filial Therapy, Glade L. Topham, Risë VanFleet, and Cynthia C. Sniscak
    9. Theraplay in Reunification Following Relational Trauma, Phyllis B. Booth, Sandra Lindaman, and Marlo L.-R. Winstead
  • 10. The Creative Use of Metaphor in Play and Art Therapy with Attachment Problems, Eliana Gil
  • 11. The Neurobiological Power of Play: Using the Neurosequential Model of Therapeutics to Guide Play in the Healing Process, Richard L. Gaskill and Bruce D. Perry
  • III. Clinical Applications: Approaches to Working with At-Risk Populations
  • 12. Helping Foster Care Children Heal from Broken Attachments: A Missing Piece of the Child, Athena A. Drewes
  • 13. Chronic Early Trauma as a Childhood Syndrome and Its Relationship to Play, Steven Tuber, Kira Boesch, Jessica Gorkin, and Madeleine Terry
  • 14. The Princess and Dal Bhat Tarkari: Play Therapy with Children of Cross-Cultural Adoption, Henry Kronengold
  • 15. Turning Back the Clock: Life before Attachment Trauma, David A. Crenshaw and Jennifer Lee
  • 16. Integrated Play Therapy with Childhood Traumatic Grief, John W. Seymour
  • 17. Mending Broken Attachment in Displaced Children: Finding ”Home” through Play Therapy, Jennifer N. Baggerly and Eric J. Green.

Author Bio:

Cathy A. Malchiodi, PhD, ATR-BC, LPAT, LPCC, is an art therapist, creative arts therapist, and clinical mental health counsellor, as well as a recognized authority on art therapy with children, adults, and families. She has given more than 350 presentations on art therapy and has published numerous articles, chapters, and books, including Understanding Children’s Drawings, Handbook of Art Therapy, Second Edition; and Creative Interventions with Traumatized Children. A faculty member at Lesley University, Dr. Malchiodi is founder of the Trauma-Informed Practices and Expressive Arts Therapy Institute and President of Art Therapy Without Borders. She is the first person to have received all three of the American Art Therapy Association’s highest honours: Distinguished Service Award, Clinician Award, and Honorary Life Member Award. She has also received honours from the Kennedy Center and Very Special Arts in Washington, DC.

David A. Crenshaw, PhD, ABPP, RPT-S, is Clinical Director of the Children’s Home of Poughkeepsie, New York, and Faculty Associate of Johns Hopkins University. He is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association (APA) and of APA’s Division of Child and Adolescent Psychology. Dr. Crenshaw is Past President of the Hudson Valley Psychological Association, which honoured him with its Lifetime Achievement Award, and of the New York Association for Play Therapy. He serves on the editorial board of the International Journal of Play Therapy and has published numerous journal articles, book chapters, and books on child therapy, child abuse and trauma, resilience in children, and reverence for the healing process. He is a frequent presenter at state-wide and national conferences on play therapy