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Family Therapy: Post-modernist View on Connectedness, Community and Communion - Essay Example

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Family Therapy: Post-modernist View on Connectedness, Community and Communion

Adler also gave importance to social factors in personality development which gave rise to social psychology. He formed the Society for Individual Psychology which affirmed that people are basically humane, open-minded and in control of their destinies. Then humanistic theories of personality followed with Erikson, Rogers, Maslow advancing development stages theories along concepts of self-direction, autonomy and mature identity. The more recent post-modernist trends in personality theory comprise a decreased interest in developmental stages and a stress on personality shaping through interplay between the person and his social environment. Out went the static theorist and his personality structures, and in came the dynamic theorist who saw the shaping process in personality growth and change. In this regard, the post-modernist family therapists are dynamic theorists who see family patterns and behavior along with many variables such as beliefs, values and influences by family members. In practice, post-modernist therapists are teachers of family functions, helpers of the family-as-a-whole, and catalysts to the family’s working together and developing strategies to resolve problems. They themselves don’t claim to give solutions to problems, but rather helps the family to develop strategies to resolve the conflicts facing them. There are various models of post-modernist therapy intervention, such as Homeostatic Mechanism likened to the information processing system and the Constructivist Model which has a personality and theoretical bias. Among these models, however, Social Constructivism is prominent with its interactional process that uses language to explore meaning during the therapeutic shaping-and-empowering dialogic process. Introducing the 3 Cs in therapy sessions Focusing on the social constructivist approach in family therapy, members of the family in session can explore the meaning of connectivity, community and communion. Practicing a very active kind of therapy, the post-modern therapist in turn shall comment, externalize points, and even give assignments. A concrete example of such assignments is asking parents to delegate duties to their children, write greeting cards or emails of appreciation. During the sessions, language is used to reveal meaning. Firstly, Connectedness is exposed as for its being man’s most powerful needs in order to adjust and be healthy, thereby averting isolation and lack of purpose in life (Townsend and McWhister, 2005). Secondly, Community is discussed along concepts of cohesiveness and cooperation that check problems like anxiety, depression and alcoholism. Thirdly, Communion is examined as the height of unity wherein the family experiences intimacy, caring, and sharing of both sufferings and joy. Gestalt therapist Dr. Jerry Greenwald prefers to refer to communion as creative intimacy, the “way of relating in which each (family member) finds support, enhances his and her potential and at the same time protects his and her essential freedom and separate, unique identity” (1977). In this situation each family member finds a deeper depth for sharing and continually relating in a family relationship which broadens and enriches life itself in its many dimensions. Values from post-modernism The modernist sees the goal of human development to be anchored on individual independence and self-sufficiency. On the ...Show more

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Family Therapy: Post-modernist View on Connectedness, Community and Communion The transition from modernism to post-modernism in therapy is a significant topic. Equally so is the subject on how the family therapist may introduce the post-modernist view on connectedness, community and communion during sessions with his clients…
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