Therapeutic limit-setting is a complex yet critical skill for child-centered play therapists. Limit-setting models and professional discussions exist in the literature, and each is grounded in person-centered and child-centered theory. However, the existing literature does not explicitly tie all of Rogers’s (1957) 6 conditions to the concept of limit-setting. The attitudinal conditions limit-setting model (ACLM) builds on existing literature by providing a 3-part model to help play therapists make limit-setting decisions based on the attitudinal conditions of congruence, empathy, and unconditional positive regard. The model is designed to support critical reflection and intentionality in the limit-setting process and to facilitate provision of the attitudinal conditions within critical relational moments in play therapy. A case example is provided to illustrate the ACLM in practice.
Increase play therapy professional’s knowledge on setting limits in child-centered play therapy to promote the attitudinal conditions of congruence, unconditional positive regard, and empathic understanding.
Apply the attitudinal limit-setting model to their practice with children.
Provide play therapists/supervisors a method to better assess their/their supervisees’ decision-making around limit-setting.