Thursday, April 29, 2010

A Significant Loss

I’m always surprised when I see someone I know in the obits -- especially someone not that much older than I am.  It was actually my husband who pointed out the 4-column article in the Post today about the death of Stanley Greenspan, a child psychiatrist who had helped us immensely a long time ago.  I will always remember him for coining the term “bitch voice” to describe the hostile voice I sometimes had when I was unhappy with my children. 

Dr. Greenspan was probably best known for the “floor time” method, whereby he recommended that parents engage in intensive child-led play for 30 minutes each day.  It makes so much sense for children who have obvious problems as well as for those who do not.  But in reality it is difficult for busy families who tend to use the television as a pacifier instead of offering that personal interaction.

His own learning difficulties as a child taught him methods of coping and perhaps gave him an insight into the struggles of some of his young patients.  Despite those problems he graduated from Harvard and then from Yale medical school.

His work spanned a period of 40 years, resulting in numerous books and a lot of very grateful parents.  He made significant strides in dealing with autistic children.

He died at the age of 68 following what must have been a massive stroke.  The world will sorely miss this pioneer in the field of child psychiatry. 


Blogger Steve said...

It is indeed always a shock to see someone you know in the obits. At least Dr. Greenspan's family can take comfort in the knowledge that he contributed greatly to his field.

1:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Love the "bitch voice" and "floor time" ideas; tell it like it is, doc! Thanks for sharing these. I'm not a parent, but it seems that these ideas also pertain to the dynamics between committed romantic partners...


3:44 PM  
Blogger Kristin said...

It's always a shock to see the obituary of someone you know. It sounds like he did a lot of good with his life.

11:21 AM  

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