maintain the focus on the presenting problem while

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Unformatted text preview: nning with the adult who appears most distant Chapter 4: Strategic & Systemic from the problem – by asking each to describe concretely the behaviors associated with the problem. Discuss all previous attempts to solve the problem and the outcomes. Ask about recent changes in the family (births, deaths, change of employment, moves, etc.). Maintain the focus on the presenting problem while gathering additional data. Affirm each family member’s view and avoid offering interpretations or advice, even if asked. Block interruptions and note disagreements or discrepancies in family member’s statements. The therapist remains empathic and non-critical. 4. Observing Family Patterns (15 minutes). The therapist needs a clear picture of the behaviors of each family member. Having members clarify a specific aspect of the presenting problem by having them talk to each other about the problem or by having them enact the dilemma facilitates this goal. Family members can be asked to describe behaviors of other members as they discuss the problem, e.g., “Mary, when you and Tom are fighting, what does Mom do?” Family members might reenact the problem, e.g., “Tom, show me what happens when Mary comes in late.” The therapist should observe and listen to the family, making note of the interactional patterns and repetitive sequences. Any suggestions during this phase should be directed toward the therapy goal and/or directly related to the behavior that was observed in the session. For example, if a younger child continually interrupts a parent, the therapist may suggest that an older child help with the younger one so the parent can focus on the session. Compliment family members when their behavior is positive, for example, “Tom, you are really helpful with little Jimmy. Thank you.” 5. Define the Goals (5 minutes). Ask each member to identify specifically what he/she would like to be different in the family as well as what he/she would like to stay the same. Help the family define the changes in clear positive terms and undersc...
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This document was uploaded on 04/03/2014.

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