The study presented the initial report of a project regarding the implementation of the Coping Power Program in Italian community hospitals, and the program’s ability to reduce externalizing behavioral problems in children with a Disruptive Behavior Disorder diagnosis. Usually, interventions for children are implemented by a number of therapists with different personal characteristics, which therefore influence the implementation quality of an intervention. That said, the present study aimed to establish whether the insecure attachment styles of therapists predict unfavorable outcomes for children treated with the Coping Power Program. The sample included 80 children with a Disruptive Behavior Disorder diagnosis and 16 therapists. The results showed that the change in children’s aggressive behavioral problems was significantly related to the levels of the therapist’s preoccupation with relationships. Higher levels of change in aggression (where a higher value means that the aggression at the end of the treatment is higher than aggression at the baseline evaluation) are associated with higher levels of therapist’s preoccupied attachment style (anxious attachment style). This study provided some preliminary evidence that therapists need to be sensitive to their own attachment experiences when delivering therapy for children.
- Conduct disorder
- Disruptive behavior
- Insecure attachment
- Oppositional defiant
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Developmental and Educational Psychology
- Life-span and Life-course Studies