Structural Approach to Family Counseling

3715 words 15 pages
Structural Approach to Family Counseling
Beverly Manning
COUN 601 – Marriage and Family Counseling I
Liberty University
July 5, 2013

ABST RACT Families are always growing and changing. They are considered living systems made up of many components. If families can’t adjust to change, the capability of the family and its individual members can be compromised. Structural family therapy (SFT) is a therapeutic approach that identifies that families have a lot of strengths. SFT tries to push families past dysfunctional patterns of interaction. This report details the application of the structural family therapy model, and I will specify my own therapeutic technique and explain how I would include faith into my
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One of the major aspects of STF is that all families have a structure (Hammond & Nichols, 2008). Structure has to do with how a family organizes itself (Hammond & Nichols 2008). Hammond and Nichols (2008) choose to apply this term structure to show that families have behavioral patterns. According to them, structure can be described as conservative but changeable (Hammond & Nichols, 2008). Healthy family structure can be obtain when clear boundaries are around the system and subsystems when a dysfunctional structure changes this means that the therapy is centered at changing the present structure of the family (Minuchin, 1974). The goal of therapy is to raise the flexibility of the family structure (Hammond & Nichols, 2008). Colapinto (1988) identified to basic principles of family structure is governed. The first is hierarchical structure in which parents have more authority than children. Functional families are thought to have an obvious hierarchy with reliable rules stating who is in charge of what (Nelson & Utesch, 1990). Hierarchical boundaries are preserved by the rules that encompass each family member's role (Nelson & Utesch. 1990). The second principle is states that every family has its own separate nature. Because every family is different, the members create ways of intermingling with


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