Linda Rosa 
Member since Oct 11, 2009


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Recent Comments

Re: “When Love is Not Enough

I would like to address a couple of the comments:

Regarding Holding Therapy: A number of Attachment Therapists try to pass off that pinning a child's arm behind the therapist's back is NOT restraint. "Look, no hands!"

While ATTACh has issued a White Paper denouncing coercive therapies, ATTACh gives mix messages to the public. ATTACh recommends books that promote coercive restraint practices. And Vicky Kelly, who has commented here on ATTACh's behalf, describes rationales for Attachment Therapy on ATTACh's current website. This document contains statements that suggest coercive restraint is still considered appropriate by ATTACh, the trade organization of Attachment Therapist. She writes:

"[T]he use of touch and physical holding in attachment therapy is utilized to create a context that facilitates access to these defensively excluded components. First, physical closeness of the head in the parent’s lap, coupled with encouraged eye contact, recreates a sense of dependency and vulnerability in the child. It is these feelings and the fears they induce that are often so heavily defended against in attachment disorders....The caregiver perseveres to prove that the defensive strategies that have defeated others in the past will no longer work to keep this caregiver away. If the child escalates into strategies of aggression, the child can be safely contained so that he/she is not able to hurt or drive others away." (

Regarding Virginia Keeler-Wolf's position on Holding Therapy. Her business -- Family Attachment and Adoptiong Center East Bay -- recommends Gregory Keck's book "Parenting the Hurt Child" which does promote Holding Therapy. A couple of quotes from this book which promote an aggressive approach to parenting and therapy:

"...only the parent who is powerful enough to kill also has enough power to love and protect." (p. 42)

"Holding the child or adolescent is accomplished by having him lie across the laps of two therapists and/or his parents. His right arm is behind the back of the lead therapist, who is sitting closest to the child’s head. His left arm is free, or may be restrained if he uses it to try to hit the therapist or to engage in self-stimulation such as scratching or fidgeting. Such self-stimulating activities may increase during holding as the child attempts to deflect contact with the therapist and to maintain awareness of self by avoiding others." (p. 252)

For more information on Attachment Therapy:

Parents should be very cautious when selecting a therapist. Make sure the therapy is evidence-based,. The therapist should be happy to provide citations for numerous papers in high level peer-reviewed journals. Therapists working with hospitals are less likely to be fringe practitioners. Psychiatrists and psychologists are less likely to use unvalidated practices.

1 like, 1 dislike
Posted by Linda Rosa on 10/11/2009 at 12:53 PM

Re: “When Love is Not Enough

The reporter failed to mention the APSAC Task Force on Attachment Therapy (see journal "Child Maltreatment" Feb. 2006) which found this practice, its parenting methods (aka Nancy Thomas parenting), and the unvalidated diagnosis "Attachment Disorder" to be inappropriate for all children and potentially abusive/dangerous. The APA's Division on Child Maltreatment endorsed the task force's findings and recommendations, which include advice to child welfare workers to investigate these practices as "suspected abuse."

Note that Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD), a recognized condition defined in the DSM-IV, is nothing like what we see in this article. The real RAD has no violent features, but rather the children who suffer from this condition are either extremely withdrawn or overly friendly with strangers. This article is NOT talking about RAD, but "Attachment Disorder" (AD), a bogus, catch-all diagnosis ONLY used by Attachment Therapists. Anyone could get this diagnosis, which is a typical warning sign that you are dealing with quacks. The AD diagnosis is especially cruel because it demonizes children and makes parents fearful of their children. It probably also scares parents away from adopting in the first place.

Note that one of the supposed signs of "RAD" in this article is that the child does not make eye contact. Consider that many foreign and some American children are taught not to make eye contact with adults as a sign of respect.

I strongly disagree that Holding Therapy is usually gentle. The practice involves coercive restraint. See horrifying stories of young adult survivors:

Also, there are numerous clips of Holding Therapy (aka Attachment Therapy) trainging tapes on YouTube:

Attachment Therapy claims to be the only option for adoptive children who many have trouble adjusting, but this expensive "therapy" is much more likely to destroy families.

1 like, 2 dislikes
Posted by Linda Rosa on 10/11/2009 at 10:34 AM

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