This week the course focuses specifically on Bowen’s intergenerational model of family therapy. This model is discussed in chapter 7, along with some other models you’ve already studied. To study the Bowen model, focus your reading on chapter 7, as well as on the other assigned resources. In the AATBS materials, you will see the Bowen model referred to as “Extended Family Systems Therapy.”
Murray Bowen introduced what is the most well developed theoretical approach to working with families in Bowen Family Therapy. The approach includes a strong emphasis on the importance of gaining the ability to manage anxiety. For example, Bowen’s concepts deal with how families model the management of anxiety, how triangles help to disperse anxiety, and how the ability to manage one’s own anxiety allows one to experience both closeness and separation in relationships. Additionally, the model helps to understand how anxiety is contagious. Studying the Bowen model is an excellent way to understand more about yourself as well as your family. As you complete assignment #1, maintain awareness of the assumptions of the model as they relate to change.
Instructions regarding AATBS materials, the readings listed below will be found in the following volumes:
California Exam Volume II – Treatment Planning and Treatment (focus on the information about this model)
National Exam Book – Treatment (focus on the information about this theory)
Be sure to carefully review this Week’s resources. You will be expected to apply the information from these resources when completing your assignments.
Association for Advanced Training in the Behavioral Sciences (AATBS) materials
Read materials related to the Bowen Family Therapy model
Gehart, D. R. (2014) Mastering competencies in family therapy
Read Chapter 7
Butler, J. F. (2008). The family diagram and genogram: Comparisons and contrasts.
Charles, R. (2001). Is there any empirical support for Bowen’s concepts of differentiation of self, triangulation, and fusion?
Markowitz, L.M. (1994). Shared passages: Shared passages.
McGoldrick, M. (1994). The ache for home: The ache for home.
Bowen Family Systems Theory. The Western Pennsylvania Family Center.
View Website Information about the model
Standard Symbols for Genograms, The Multicultural Family Institute
The Family Systems Institute
View Website and articles of interest
Family of Origin: Grading Rubric
MFT5104 Family of Origin Paper-Grading Rubric_distributed.pdf
PowerPoint – Chapter 7 intergenerational therapy MCFT
Chapter 7 intergenerational therapy MCFT.pptx
Bowen Family Systems Theory provides a detailed set of concepts that are commonly assessed through family interviews, often in conjunction with the creation of a genogram. For this assignment, write a case analysis of your own family of origin using a Bowen approach. Leave out or disguise information you do not wish to share. Use the following outline for your analysis:
1. Create a genogram of your family of origin, using the correct format. Please use paper and pencil to draw your genogram. After you finish, scan the image and upload it as part of your submission for this assignment. Please be mindful that your drawing needs to be professional and clear so your professor can read and understand your submission.
You are also welcome but not required to use one or more of these resources to assist in the creation of your genogram:
Genogram Software (Genogram Analytics) http://www.genogramanalytics.com/examples_genograms.html (this is Windows and Mac OS compatible)
Genogram Software (Wingeno) http://www.wingeno.org/download.html (this is Windows and Mac OS compatible)
IGenogram http://www.ilogotec.com/igenogram-1-8/ (this is a mobile app for Apple products available for $15)
Depict at least three generations (more if you wish to) including you, your parents, and your grandparents (as well as aunts, uncles and cousins as applicable to complete the assignment). Include information on cultural factors such as race, ethnicity, religion, and social class and demographic information such as age, geographic location of residence, jobs held, etc. You will also include information about the quality of relationships (including divorces, extra-marital affairs, etc.), any mental health or addiction issues, any applicable medical concerns or any other information you wish to include.
2. Based on this genogram, begin your paper by giving a brief overview of the major experiences and patterns of interaction for your family. How do diversity issues affect the family dynamics?
3. Write a description of your family in terms of the major concepts of the Bowen approach. This is not a family history but rather a description that emphasizes an analysis of relationships from a Bowenian perspective. Briefly define each concept and then provide an illustration of each concept from your family of origin.
Differentiation of Self
Nuclear Family Emotional System
Family Projection Process
Multigenerational Transmission Process
Societal Emotional Process
4. Provide at least two specific examples that illustrate that the Bowen Family Therapy is a systems-based approach to treatment.
5. Identify and briefly discuss a problem in the family using Bowen theory. This “problem” should involve you directly, it should be real, meaningful, not too big, and something that you are willing to share. Develop a specific intervention plan for this problem based on the Bowenian approach. Make this a very practical, small intervention. You may or may not choose to try it. In Bowenian terms, describe how you think it would affect the dynamics of your family if you did implement this intervention. Include a treatment plan based on information from the Gehart (2014) text.
Length: 5-7 pages
Your paper should demonstrate thoughtful consideration of the ideas and concepts that are presented in the course and provide new thoughts and insights relating directly to this topic. Your response should reflect scholarly writing and current APA standards.
Upload your assignment and the genogram using the Upload Assignment button.
1.0 Articulate the primary concepts of the classic and intergenerational models of Marriage and Family Therapy.
2.0 Synthesize specific concepts of the key classic and intergenerational models of therapy.
3.0 Critique classic and intergenerational models of therapy in the professional literature.
4.0 Evaluate the degree to which classic and intergenerational models of family therapy address issues of diversity including, age, culture, spirituality, race, gender, and socioeconomic status.
7.0 Appraise family dynamics in your family of origin and use that knowledge to further your development as a MFT.