Within the systems approach, there are three different ways problems are approached, namely, the strategic approach, the structural approach and the systemic approach. The strategic family therapist addresses problems in light of uncertain and inconsistent hierarchies within the family system (Watson n.d., p.381). He/she elicits "power and control issues, and directs change by means of family assignments or paradoxical injunctions" (Haley 1976, Madanes 1981, cited in Watson n.d., p.381). A structural family therapist looks into family structure, subsystems, and boundaries with an ideal family structure in mind and tries to reorganize the boundaries of families. The systemic approach has its origin in the work of the Milan therapy team inspired by Mara Selvini Palazzoli along with L.Boscolo, G. Cecchin and G. Prata (Wright & Watson 1991, p.407). Systemic therapy involves conceptualization of family problems from a systemic perspective, which plays an important role in the treatment process.
Systemic therapists offer information and advice that liberate the family and enable them to solve their own problems. A systemic opinion is "offered by conceptualizing the presenting symptom as a solution to some other hypothetical or implied problem that would or could occur should the symptom not be present" (Tomm, cited in Wright & Watson 1991, p.427). This is called reframing. ...Show more