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Basic Principles of Strategic Family Therapy

Family therapy focuses on the family as a unit and how the members relate to one another within the unit. The focus is on roles, interpersonal dynamics and communication. There are various theories presenting Family therapy one of which is Strategic Family therapy.

Strategic family Therapy operates on the premise that “one cannot not behave” and “ one cannot not communicate”. It operates paradoxically to what we believe. What is viewed as illogical or paradoxical is only so into the framework in which it does make sense.

Within its own framework what is considered to be illogical in another framework makes perfect sense and this cease to be illogical. The conceptual framework provides definitions of what is called problematic. The framework also suggest ways to deal with the problem. The problem is only a problem from the frame of reference that so defines it.

It is a fundamental assumption of the strategic therapist that people will behave in a way logically consistent with their conceptual frames. Reality is based on perception that people have. What you call a problem can be framed in another perception and the problem disappears.

The theory further contends that things are not the way they are rather they are the way they are because that is the way we have perceived and conceptualized them. The symptom communicates what the relationships within the system are like and thus normalcy is viewed in context.

The Strategic therapist will sometime prescribe the symptom as treatment. The therapist does this by reframing the symptom, suggesting it or sometimes will not offer any explanation. For example, if the symptom is insomnia, the therapist may suggest that the person not sleep.

Symptoms are viewed as interpersonal strategies or efforts to define the nature of the relationships. The linear view suggest that symptoms are not caused rather they evolve as a necessary and logical role for the maintenance of the family. The triad is seen as basic to the family’s organization and the maintenance of its functional patterns.

The strategic therapist further sees normalcy, coherence and fitness in any family regardless of its form and regardless of whether it has a member whose action would be considered dysfunctional from a perspective outside the family. All families are viewed as functional rather than normal or abnormal and all behavior is perfectly logical within the family’s system.

The theory does not provide a model of how a family should be. It insists that the punctuation of health and normalcy can be made only from the point of view of cultural consensus. In other words without reference to the logic and coherence of the family.

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  1. Lovely share..Great information

  2. very good guide in preserving good family ties.

  3. I was about to sleep but I am awaken by this article. Thank you.

  4. well written

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