An interdisciplinary case is made for the centrality of personal relationships in the creation and amelioration of mental health problems. Taking the work of John Bowlby as a starting point, the article summarizes accumulating evidence from the past 50 years about the link between childhood adversity and adult mental health problems. Evidence is also reviewed about contemporary interpersonal impacts on adult mental health from natural social settings and in professional therapy. These empirical summaries are then discussed in the context of dominant trends in professional knowledge about bio-determinism within psychiatry and the emphasis upon models and techniques in professional and political advocates of the psychological therapies. It is concluded that the latter trends are diverting us from policies, which properly concede the importance of relationships for improving the mental health of the population. © 2009 SAGE Publications.
|Number of pages||19|
|Publication status||Published - Mar 2009|
- Child neglect and abuse
- Mental health
- Social capital