Extremely Aggressive and Explosive Children

  • Cheryl Bodiford McNeil
  • Toni L. Hembree-Kigin
Part of the Issues in Clinical Child Psychology book series (ICCP)


Nearly all children referred for PCIT present with clinical levels of disruptive behavior including aggression, noncompliance, and tantrums. In this chapter, we consider children who are extreme outliers displaying highly aggressive, disruptive, and explosive behavior. All PCIT therapists will encounter children from time to time who challenge the boundaries of their expertise in behavioral management. These children often have been expelled from multiple daycare settings and sometimes require therapeutic preschools, day treatment programs, or inpatient stays. They may have histories significant for prenatal exposure to drugs and alcohol and come from homes with domestic violence and child maltreatment.


Disruptive Behavior Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Extreme Level Aggressive Child Destructive Behavior 
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  1. Eisenstadt (Hembree-Kigin), T., Eyberg, S. M., McNeil, C. B., Newcomb, K., & Funderburk, B. (1993). Parent-child interaction therapy with behavior problem children: Relative effectiveness of two stages and overall treatment outcome. Journal of Clinical Child Psychology, 22, 42–51.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Cheryl Bodiford McNeil
    • 1
  • Toni L. Hembree-Kigin
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyWest Virginia UniversityMorgantownUSA
  2. 2.Early Childhood Mental Health ServicesMesaUSA

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