Help for Psychology

As a Consultant Clinical Psychologist I have extensive experience of assessing, diagnosing and working therapeutically with adults, children and families across the ability spectrum; specifically those with disorders such as Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD), Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Pathological Demand Avoidance (PDA), and generalised learning disabilities, (e.g. Down’s Syndrome), with my clinical practice being influenced by systemic family therapy.  During the last 15 years I have been involved with the assessment over 1,500 children and young adults for the above disorders. This includes working with children with Autism and profound learning difficulties in a residential school setting, who presented with extremely challenging behaviour, and with adults and young people with Autism Spectrum Disorders, co-morbid mental health difficulties and, at times, a forensic history who are detained under the Mental Health Act. I specialise in working with families where there are complex needs and/or very challenging behaviour.

As a founder member of the West Midlands Criminal Justice Forum (a forum set up specifically to deal with issues around those young people and adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder who come into contact with the Criminal Justice System), I regularly speak at national and local conferences. Additionally, I act as an expert witness, and have given evidence in courts in cases of young people who have come into contact with the Criminal Justice System with Autism Spectrum Disorder and/or ADHD, specifically commenting upon ‘fitness to plead’ and ‘mens rea’ (guilty mind). I have recently begun expanding into Family Justice work. Further work has included the preparation of a large number of formal reports required to support a child or young person’s school or residential placement. My experience has also led to many requests to complete reports for Mental Health Tribunals.

I have considerable experience of working with adults with learning difficulties, personality disorders, schizophrenia and neuro-developmental difficulties such as Autism, including those who have a forensic history or who have offended. This has led to acquiring an extensive experience in the assessment and diagnosis of both children and adults with Autism, and experience in the management of challenging behaviour within in this client group. I have worked with women with a dual diagnosis of Personality Disorder and Autism, leading to a particular interest in the parenting capacity of women with  mental health and/or neuro-developmental difficulties.

Areas of assessment and report writing include:

I have recently been appointed as a Research Associate in the department of Social, Genetic and Developmental Psychiatry, Institute of Psychiatry, King’s College London, working with Prof Francesca Happe, Director of MRC Centre and Head of Department of SGDP, and Dr Liz O’Nions from the Parenting and Special Education Unit, KU Leuven in Belgium.  I will be working on a research project entitled ‘Behaviour and Neurocognitive Profiles in ASD with and without Extreme Demand Avoidance’.

Dr Judy Eaton - Consultant Clinical Psychologist and Clinical Director

Having worked in the field of psychological assessment and intervention since 1993, I began my career as an academic, researching language and emotional understanding in typically and atypically developing children, before deciding to move into Clinical Psychology.

The British Psychological Society awarded me Chartered Psychologist status in 1997.  I am a Registered Practitioner Psychologist (Clinical) with the Health and Care Professions Council.

I worked in the field of clinical psychology within the National Health Service for ten years, and have also worked in a low secure psychiatric hospital for children and adults as Lead Consultant Clinical Psychologist

Dr Judy Eaton


Book chapter:

Eaton, J (2015) ‘The Psychological needs of children and adults with neuro-developmental conditions including Autism’ in Parents’ Capacity to Change and the Timescales of the Child. Jordan Publishing, UK

Journal/magazine articles:

Eaton, J and Banting, R (2012) ‘Adult diagnosis of pathological demand avoidance – subsequent care planning’ Journal of Learning Disability and Offending Behaviour, 150 – 157

Eaton, J, Hesketh, E and Duncan, K (2018), Modification of the Coventry Grid Interview (Flackhill et al, 2017) to include the Pathological Demand Avoidant Profile, Good Autism Practice.

Conference papers presented:

Forensic and Clinical Aspects of Adult Autism, St Andrew’s Healthcare Forensic Autism conference, 2010

Autism and Paedophilia, Learning Disability and Offending Conference, Newcastle, 2013

Females and Autism, FICAPS Risk and Recovery in In-Patient Settings, Manchester, 2014

Subsequent Care Planning for Adults with PDA – a Case Study, National Autistic Society conference, Cardiff 2014

WIPC Conference, Assessing Parenting Capacity in persons with Autism, Oxford, October 2015

ASD Helping Hands Ageing with Autism Conference, Understanding Autism assessment and Diagnosis, Norwich, November 2017

NAS PDA Conference, Understanding and managing challenging behaviour in children with the PDA profile, Peterborough, November 2017

PDA Society Conference, Mental Health Challenges for Adults with the PDA profile, Birmingham, April 2018

ESSENCE Autism Conference, The Pathological Demand Avoidant profile, Odense, Denmark, April 2018

NAS Mental Health Conference, Mental Health Challenges for females with Autism, Leeds, September 2018

NAS PDA Conference, Differential diagnosis between the PDA profile and Attachment Disorder, Manchester, November 2018

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New Book - released by Jessica Kingsley Publishers      

A Guide to Mental Health Issues in Girls and Young Women on the Autism Spectrum: Diagnosis, Intervention and Family Support

(Available via Amazon)


This book provides an excellent synthesis of research, diagnostic frameworks and personal perspectives of girls and their families written in a very accessible style. I would recommend it to anyone working with or living with girls and young women on the autism spectrum. (Ruth Fidler, Education Consultant, Autism Associates)

The author shines a light on the less well-understood or more complex presentations of autism, including pathological demand avoidance, in this insightful, compassionate and practical book. Combining the latest research, years of direct clinical experience and detailed individual stories, this much-needed book will be invaluable for families and professionals. (Trustees of the PDA Society)

An excellent book by a knowledgeable author. It is easy to read and understand, and answered many of the questions I had about autism spectrum disorders. I recommend this book to anyone who is interested in learning more about this topic. (Dr Olumide Kuti, Consultant Forensic Psychiatrist, The Huntercombe Hospital Norwich)

Below is a peer review of “A Guide to Mental Health Issues in Girls and Young Women on the Autism Spectrum: Diagnosis, Intervention and Family Support” on