Compare structural family therapy to strategic family therapy

Compare structural family therapy to strategic family therapy
Structural Versus Strategic Family Therapies Essay

Although structural therapy and strategic therapy are both used in family therapy, these therapeutic approaches have many differences in theory and application. As you assess families and develop treatment plans, you must consider these differences and their potential impact on clients. For this Structural Versus Strategic Family Therapies Essay Assignment, as you compare structural and strategic family therapy, consider which therapeutic approach you might use with your own client families.


Structural Versus Strategic Family Therapies Essay Learning Objectives
Students will:
Compare structural family therapy to strategic family therapy
Create structural family maps
Justify recommendations for family therapy
To prepare:
Review this week’s Learning Resources and reflect on the insights they provide on structural and strategic family therapies.
Refer to Gerlach (2015) in this week’s Learning Resources for guidance on creating a structural family map.

The Structural Versus Strategic Family Therapies Essay Assignment
In a 2- to 3-page Structural Versus Strategic Family Therapies Essay paper, address the following:

Summarize the key points of both structural family therapy and strategic family therapy.
Compare structural family therapy to strategic family therapy, noting the strengths and weaknesses of each.
Provide an example of a family in your practicum using a structural family map. Note: Be sure to maintain HIPAA regulations.
Recommend a specific therapy for the family, and justify your choice using the Learning Resources.

Lesson 5 of 7 – evolve a high-nurturance family

Clicking underlined links here will open a new window. Other links will open an informational popup, so please turn off your browser’s popup blocker or allow popups from this nonprofit Web site. If your playback device doesn’t support Javascript, the popups may not display. Follow underlined links after finishing this article to avoid getting lost.

This is one of a series of lesson-5 articles on how to evolve a high-nurturance family.The article introduces a powerful tool for understanding how your family is “built” – “structural mapping.” It may look complicated, but if you experiment with it, you’ll find that it’s easy to use. Structural Versus Strategic Family Therapies Essay

The article defines family structure, summarizes some basic premises, shows you how to map the structure of any family, and proposes baseline ‘maps” of healthy biological families.. A related article shows how to map typical multi-home stepfamily structures.

This Structural Versus Strategic Family Therapies Essay mapping tool can help you answer questions like…

“Who has the power in our home and family, including dead people and non-relatives?”

“Who’s in charge of each of our homes?”

“Who is aligned and who is conflicted?”

“Is anyone excluded from full family membership? By Whom? Why?”

“Do we have major communication blocks in and between our several homes?”

“How does our family structure react to crises, major conflicts, and membership changes?

This Structural Versus Strategic Family Therapies Essay article assumes you’re familiar with…

the intro to this Web site and the premises underlying it
self-improvement Lessons 1 thru 4
these Q&A items on families
these traits of a high-nurturance family
how to make and use a family genogram
About Family Structure

Here, a family means a group of people with genetic, legal, and social bonds who depend on each other for inclusion, identity, companionship, support, procreation, security and stability. This can include dead and distant relatives, special friends and professional consultants, a Higher Power, neighbors, teachers, coaches, baby sitters, and perhaps influential mentors and media figures.

Structure describes how something is built, like a house, novel, sailboat, or government. Structures range from stable to unstable and effective to flawed, depending on what they’re designed to do. Family structure refers to:

Who’s included and excluded from the family;
Who’s in chargeof each home or group of related homes, if anyone. Whose needs and behaviors cause the main decisions in calm and troubled times?
Relationship bonds and boundaries, or lack of them;
The roles and rules that govern how members’ needs get met – or don’t;
Family-member alliances and antagonisms; and …
Communication blocks in and between people and homes.
Structural mapping is a visual tool. It can help you identify and validate what’s healthyabout your family, and illuminate structural problems that lower your nurturance level. The structural mapping scheme outlined here uses some basic ideas about family functioning. See if you agree with each of these beliefs, and add your own:


1) A family’s core purpose is to fill all adults’ and children’s needs. A common key need is for a safe haven, where every member feels consistently accepted, valued, respected, supported, and encouraged to develop and use their unique talents.

Families that don’t fill all their members’ key needs consistently can be called low nurturance or dysfunctional. The more of these factors that exist, the higher the nurturance level. Levels vary over time with structural and environmental changes.

2) The main factors determining a home’s or a family’s nurturance level are…

whether the resident adults are psychologically wounded or not, and…
whether they’re self and mutually aware and knowledgeable;
how healthy the family’s grieving policy is; and…
whether the adults are motivated and able to communicate and problem-solve
From my clinical experience since 1979, I believe many or most typical adults have survived early-childhood abandonment, neglect, and abuse (trauma), and have inherited significant psychological wounds. Few people – including family-life professionals – are aware of this, and/or they don’t know what it means or what to do about it.

Premise 3) All families experience local or chronic stress over surface issues like these:

family membership(inclusion and exclusion)
boundaries(missing, weak, or rigid; violations; and conflicts)
roles(unclear, unstable, inappropriate, and/or conflicting),
relationship rules and consequences(unclear, conflicting, inconsistent, and appropriate or not);
adapting toand stabilizing after systemic and environmental changes.
Premise 4) The key relationship in a family that includes minor kids should be between mates, vs. an adult and a child or other adults (like grandparent-parent) or two ex mates. In resolving family problems, mates should consistently put their integrities and wholistic health first, their relationship second, and all else third – except in emergencies.

5) Family members (like you) can proactively improve their family’s structure and system by taking and applying this online self-improvement course. Structural Versus Strategic Family Therapies Essay,

Notice your reaction to these premises. If you don’t agree with them, what do youbelieve?

To use this visual tool, your family adults need some…


Structural-mapping Symbols

Family-structural maps use symbols to show how members relate to each other. In this article, I’ll use the generic letters below. You can use these letters, your family-members’ names or initials, cartoon figures, faces, or any other meaningful symbols.

Be creative: doing these maps can be fun, as well as instructive! Consider using colored markers or pens, too – whatever makes the diagrams clearer for everyone. Try to see the big picture and theme, to minimize getting boggled by all these symbols. Once you try them, they’re surprisingly easy…

Map Symbol Stands for current nuclear-family member:
P, M , F, … Living Parent, Mother, and Father
DP, DM, DF Dead Parent, Mother, Father
MA FA MW FW Addicted or psychologically-wounded Mother or Father
C1 , C2 , T1 , T2 Dependent (minor) Children and Teens
[P], [M] or [S]; A [dead] or [absent] and still psychologically-important Parent, Mother, or Sibling … (e.g. an aborted, stillborn, or grown child).
P<<>>C Conflicted Parent and Child
[HP], {God}, [Allah] The Higher Power/s that significantly influence one or more family members, if any.
R1 , GM, … Key Relative “1” or a powerful Grandmother, or …
Fr1 , or Pr, or … Important Friend “1”, or Professional person (priest, counselor, …)
(P or (C An excluded or rejected Parent or Child.
P1 || P2 Two parents with ineffective verbal communications.
(P+C1 ) or (C1+C2) Psychologically over-involved (enmeshed or codependent) Parent and Child “1”, or enmeshed Children “1” and “2.”



” _ _ _ _ _”

Family responsibility lines. Put people above the line who have the most consistent impact in directing current household residents’ feelings, actions, and attention. Ideally, all resident parents would be always above the line and minor kids below.
Dashed responsibility lines signify generally open adult-child communications. A solid line means communications are blocked (people above and below the line don’t disclose honestly, hear well, or problem-solve effectively).

F<<||<>||<>>||<<< FA ——— Mom has legal and physical custody, and controls her home (is above the line). Arrows show regular child visitation with their addicted Father, who is in charge of his home when the kids come to stay; but communications with his kids are blocked (solid line). Ongoing two-way hostility, poor communications, and conflicts between bioparents, with the kids caught in the middle. No significantly intrusive or dependent relatives There are many variations of this two-home divorcing biofamily, considering who’s in charge in each home; the numbers, ages, and “parentification” of older kids (i.e. being above the parental responsibility line); the availability and involvement of nurturing kin; and how the “sending” home restructures if some of the kids go visit, but some stay. The custodial bioparent is often overwhelmed, and may “promote” an older child above the line to co-control the home. Or s/he may hire day-care or live-in help (who should be included in the structural map). ORDER A PLAGIARISM-FREE PAPER HERE If you divorced, what did (or does) your two-home biofamily structure look like? Did (does) it have several structures? Who was in charge of each home when the kids were there? Recap This Lesson-5 Structural Versus Strategic Family Therapies Essay article defines “family” and “family structure,” and offers several basic premises about families. It shows typical family-mapping symbols, and illustrates how to diagram (map) the structure of high-nurturance (functional) and low-nurturance biofamilies. Coupled with family-systems knowledge, structural mapping is a tool that can help healthy, informed adult members visualize and discuss how their nuclear or extended family is “built” – and identify and solve structural problems. If you want to map a multi-home nuclear stepfamily, see this article. Pause, breathe, and reflect – why did you read this article? Did you get what you needed? If not, what do you need? Who’s answering these questions – your true Self, or ”someone else”? Structural Versus Strategic Family Therapies Essay This Structural Versus Strategic Family Therapies Essay article was very helpful somewhat helpful not helpful

bottom of post
Scroll to Top