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Social construction therapy models

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  1. Introduction
  2. Development of social constructionist viewpoints
    1. The Milan systemic therapy model
    2. The umbrella of postmodern thought
  3. Language
    1. The language-based technique within social constructionism
    2. Externalization
  4. Self narratives
  5. Research
  6. Personal integration
  7. Conclusion
  8. References

All forms of psychotherapy, including marriage and family therapy, have traditionally followed a medical model where the therapist is the expert, who can diagnose and then treat whatever psychological dysfunction is occurring within a family. The treatment of this dysfunction was the area of family therapy that evolved and changed over time, from psychotherapeutic techniques to cognitive and cognitive behavioral techniques (Goldenberg & Goldenberg, 2008), but the underlying assumption remained. The therapist was considered the expert, and the family was presenting with a problem that the therapist could help them solve. As new theories of treatment emerged, several practitioners began to modify the position of the therapist in the therapeutic relationship. Bowen, for example, a transgenerational therapist in the mid-1970's, presented himself as a coach, or researcher, to aid a family in making changes.

[...] Exceptions A social constructionist technique called Solution-Focused Brief Therapy (SFBT), focuses simply on solving a family's presenting problems, rather than focusing on why the problems have developed. Focusing on solutions instead of problems a therapist using this technique will ask questions attempting to help the family focus on positive behaviors, including exceptions to chronic problem behavior. For example, instead of asking a family to describe a time where a problem was particularly bad, the therapist would ask the family to describe a time when the problem was not an issue. [...]


[...] Multi-family group therapy can be very helpful, as families share narratives and feel comfort in knowing they are not alone in their struggles (Lemmens, et. al, 2007). While a single family can band together to create new views and ideas, and pool their strengths and resources, multiple families provide more voices, more ideas, more strength, and more resources. presence of several families reshapes all relationships in the group? Lemmens, et al p. 52). The development of culturally instigated dominant narrative can also be studied within groups, as, they be a particularly useful means to gather information about and representations of socially constructed phenomena, including the numerous conceptualizations, challenges, and other constructs affecting family systems? (Puig, Koro-Ljungberg, & Echevarria- Doan p. [...]


[...] Within this same vein, I believe that engaging in methods of therapy from multiple schools of thought would be more useful than only subscribing to one theory. Research has suggested that this can be helpful in developing therapeutic flexibility and understanding differences (Lowe, Hunt, & Simmons, 2008). As a therapist, then, I plan to use social constructionist ideas carefully, and within the bounds of relationships and those things that I believe are truly subjective. I believe that religion can be a part of these interventions. [...]

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