Areas of Specialty
Family or systems therapy is based on the idea that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts; change in one member of the system can change the functioning of the whole. It’s been my experience that families differ according to the culture in which the parents and grandparents were raised, degree of contact with extended family and affiliation with their community.
When establishing a working relationship with a family, I find it important to understand its structure, to assess the kind of boundaries that exist between the many groupings within the family -- the couple, the parent and child, and among the children. I also look at the roles members take on to maintain the equilibrium of the family; for example, one member may be the “problem,” another, the “caretaker.” Helping the family to understand itself as a group, and the individuals to see the constraints imposed by the unconsciously assigned roles, can ultimately helps to free the family from habitual patterns often enacted unintentionally, and form more healthy, dynamic bonds with one another.