Transforming negative parent-adolescent interactions: From impasse to dialogue

Guy S. Diamond, Howard A. Liddle

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

71 Scopus citations


This treatment development, process research study focuses on resolving insession, parent-adolescent conflicts characterized by negative exchanges, emotional disengagement, and poor problem solving. These processes have been empirically linked to poor developmental outcomes, and clinically linked to poor therapeutic progress. Specifically, we examined how a shift of therapeutic focus from behavior management to interpersonal relationship failures could resolve this impasse and resuscitate therapeutic momentum. A task analysis approach was used to verify the presence of the impasse, to illuminate its core features, and to define the therapist and client behaviors associated with resolving it. In Part 1 of this two-part series, we presented the final performance map that represented that family's cognitive, emotional and behavioral interactions necessary to resolve the impasse. This article, Part II, focuses on the theoretical foundation of the intervention strategies, the phenomenology of the impasse, and the therapist's skills needed to facilitate it.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5-26
Number of pages22
JournalFamily Process
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 1999

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)


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