You cannot choose what is not on the menu - Obstacles to and reasons for the inclusion of relational processes in the DSM-V: Comment on the special section

Jay Lebow*, Kristina Coop Gordon

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations

Abstract

Relational diagnosis has crucial importance in clinical treatment, but its development and inclusion in systems of classification such as the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual has been constrained by a number of factors. First, there is little consensus about what relational assessment and/or diagnosis entails. A second obstacle is the innate complexity of relational assessment and diagnosis, which results in a lack of definitive, well-accepted, evidence-based operational definitions of difficulties. Third, empirical testing of relational issues has lagged well behind the development of elegant theory. A fourth significant block to including relational disorders in the DSM is the discomfort engendered in some quarters about labeling social difficulties as disorders. Finally, the political process that is part of the evolution of diagnostic systems poses difficulties in the acceptance of new disorders or dimensions. This comment on the articles in the special section on relational disorders of the Journal of Family Psychology addresses how each of these articles contributes to overcoming these constraints.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)432-437
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Family Psychology
Volume20
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2006

Keywords

  • Assessment
  • Classification
  • DSM
  • Family psychology
  • Relational diagnosis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Psychology(all)

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