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The Art of Not Knowing the Answer

A Trauma Specialist Shares Her Most Therapeutic Moment

Mary Jo Barrett • No Comments

By Mary Jo Barrett - My very first case was the Byford family. The father was serving a six-month sentence for domestic abuse. During a home visit several months into treatment, the daughter, Laura, announced, “Dad is getting out of jail today! And he’s coming here!” My mind went blank. Her mother looked at me. Suddenly, it was as though I passed whatever strength I had to her, and she then passed it back to me.

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A New Year's Conundrum

A Stumped Therapist's Attempt to Help Two Parents Set Boundaries Has a Surprising Result

Ron Taffel • 1 Comment

By Ron Taffel - At 15, Jenny regularly breaks her curfew, flirts with drugs, and is getting close to being suspended from her Manhattan public school. Today, she and her parents are in my office discussing the latest issue: New Year’s Eve is coming up, and Jenny and her posse have plans.

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The Young and the Anxious

When Worried Clients Swing Back, What's Your Role?

Lynn Lyons • No Comments

By Lynn Lyons - Lately, I’ve become aware of just how much of my practice is made up of young adults who return to therapy after leaving the nest. This pattern is also indicative of a generation of young people stuck in the transition between childhood and adulthood. Here's what I do with "long-term" clients who swing back.

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VIDEO: Mary Jo Barrett on Doing Trauma Treatment Right

What's New in Trauma Treatment, the Importance of Groups, and More

Mary Jo Barrett • No Comments

In this interview, Networker Assistant Editor Chris Lyford talks to family therapist and trauma specialist Mary Jo Barrett about the evolution of trauma treatment and the importance of bringing families into the mix.

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VIDEO: My First Client, My Greatest Teacher

Sue Johnson Shares a Story of Personal and Professional Transformation

Susan Johnson • No Comments

In the following video from her 2018 Networker Symposium storytelling piece, couples and family therapist Sue Johnson shares a therapeutic moment that stands out from all others, one that left her with a deepened sense of what it means at the core to be a therapist.

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Jump-Starting Conversation in Family Therapy

The Difference Between Guiding and Intervening

Mike Nichols • No Comments

By Mike Nichols - How do you get family members to talk together productively? Enactments can be among the most valuable tools for getting a family's communication going. But cultivating these conversations—and making sure not to overmanage them—is harder than it sounds.

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There's Something Missing from Your Family Therapy Work

The Biggest Threats to Marriage Today Aren't What You Think

Betty Carter • No Comments

By Betty Carter - In order to understand the particularity of almost any couple's personal experience, we need to adjust our lens to include not only their private domestic encounters, but the much larger political and social struggle about the politics of relationships beyond the walls of home.

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Family Therapy Pioneer Salvador Minuchin on the Therapist's Self

Reflections on a Life, Legacy, and Growing Older

Salvador Minuchin • 7 Comments

By Salvador Minuchin - A maverick and a visionary in the '60s and '70s, Salvador Minuchin transformed the very idea of what a therapist was supposed to be—a brash interventionist willing to make people change regardless of what they were feeling, or even knew they were feeling. Beyond that, he put forth a brand new model of psychotherapy—family therapy. In the following article, he reflects on his journey as a therapist and what clinicians need to do in order to master their craft.

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The Art of Facing an Impossible Task

A Social Worker Finds Inspiration in a Father-Daughter Memory

Hope Payson • 1 Comment

By Hope Payson - When I was about 10 years old, I climbed into the cab of my father's truck to join him for an evening of snowplowing. I basked in the rare opportunity to be alone with a man I didn't know well. Decades later at work, I recall that snowplow ride. I'm sitting across from a human blizzard of a woman—someone barely two steps away from drugs that have buried her family alive.

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When Grief, Guilt, and Anger Collide

Finding Meaning in Feelings That Can Complicate the Grieving Process

Sameet Kumar • No Comments

By Sameet Kumar - While grief may never entirely fade, and the loss that caused it certainly won't be forgotten, it almost always changes and becomes incorporated into life, so the grieving person can move on. There are times, however, when grief doesn't take this relatively straightforward path toward resolution.

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