ABSTRACT

This chapter focuses on a single-case research study in which grounded theory methodology was applied for a retrospective analysis of the clinical material from an intensive psychotherapy treatment. The child was 2 years old when he started psychotherapy, which, being quite unusual, prompted further exploration. However, it is also a case that will strike many child psychotherapists as fairly common—he was a looked-after child who had very clear indications of developmental delay. As child psychotherapy has had a long history in the field of looked-after children, it seemed important to further the understanding of the treatment of this particular population with a focus on early development. Many themes emerged during the clinical experience that one might expect from such a case, including problems with communication, anxiety, hyperactivity, disorientation, and difficulties with transitions; however, with the application of grounded theory methods, greater depth and understanding of these themes evolved, which I hope to summarize here.