There are times when we experience tension in important relationships. Depending on our sensitivity in these relationships, we may react automatically with an “I’m right and you’re wrong” attitude. Frustration, anger, and blame replace the positive aspects of the relationship. It can be challenging to work through the negativity and come to a resolution.
What I believe after 25 years of practice is how helpful an objective third party can be for the individual, couple and family. It is my experience that people often wait too long to seek professional help. What I offer is a different way of thinking by viewing a problem in a broad, relationship context, plus tools and interventions that can help resolve the relationship tension.
My experience as a therapist extends to individuals who have suffered a traumatic experience. The trauma can be from childhood physical and sexual abuse, domestic violence and workplace harassment and bullying. I also work with veterans who suffer from PTSD symptoms.
Approach to Therapy
With 25 years of experience as a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, I apply my training and expertise in Bowen Family Systems Theory to my work with individuals and couples. When relationships are stressed beyond a person’s ability to cope, symptoms develop. People present in therapy with depression, anxiety, self-destructive behaviors and physical problems that are exacerbated by chronic relationship tension. Offering an individual, couple or family a broader view of the problem that goes beyond blaming oneself or the other person can be helpful and result in improved relationships.
How does Family Systems Therapy help with specific symptoms or problems?
A Family Systems approach views the individual’s problem to be embedded in a relationship system. This implies that there are two or more people involved in the relationship tension. Identifying the reciprocal influence people have on one another allows an individual to take responsibility for their part in the problem. The conversation focuses on how the motivated adult relating in a different way can elicit a different response in the other. A Family Systems approach posits that a change in one person will affect a change in the other family members so that therapy can be effective when only one person attends. Therefore, couples therapy can involve one member of the twosome if the other does not choose to be involved. The influence of one person relating differently extends to parent/child relationships.