Keeping the chaos in : the application of self psychology in the treatment of childhood functional faecal retention

Cotterell, Angela (2005-03)

Thesis (MA (Psychology))--University of Stellenbosch, 2005.


This study presents the possible contribution that self psychology might make to understanding, and guiding the treatment of; childhood functional faecal retention. A discussion of self psychology's theoretical perspective on childhood development is provided, including specific reference to the central theoretical issues 0 f optimal responsiveness and mutual- and self-regulation and how these manifest within the psychotherapeutic process. A case study provides the vehicle for the discussion ofthe applicability and relevance of the central self psychological tenets to the psychotherapeutic treatment of functional faecal retention in childhood. It tentatively concludes that self psychological theory may be useful in informing and structuring the treatment of children with retentive encopresis, and may be especially useful in conjunction with potentially invasive medically and surgically based interventions

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