May / June 2022 Volume 21, No. 3

Systems Theory Brings It All Together in Undergraduate Education

I have learned how, through the family systems theory, we can look at how the family works as a whole rather than examining each individual member. It is a way to understand an individual based on their role/part/interactions within their family unit. —Middy, Senior Student, Family Studies Concentrator, Psychology Major Undergraduate students are at a [...]

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May / June 2022 Volume 21, No. 3

A Larger Systems Approach: Integrating Intersectionality into Family Systems Theory

“Power, privilege, oppression.” What was your reaction reading these words? For some, resiliency, for others vulnerability, but for all, critical. Now, how about “family systems theory?” For some comfortable, for others complexity, but for couple and family therapists (CFTs) and our work with families, critical. The American Association of Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT) Clinical [...]

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May / June 2022 Volume 21, No. 3

Reimagining the Application of Systems Theory Via Teletherapy Interventions

At the start of the pandemic, I was a new mom—just returning from maternity leave. As most other university instructors at that time, I was tasked with transferring my courses to an online format immediately upon my return. One of the classes that I taught was a course on Systemic Child and Adolescent Treatment. I [...]

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May / June 2022 Volume 21, No. 3

Historical Overview of Family Systems Theory

Beginning in the mid 20th century, the practice of family therapy began to coalesce around certain key theories and systems to form an approach by which future practitioners could base their observations and work for important changes for the health of individuals and relationships. These ideas and approaches are sometimes organized and named as family [...]

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May / June 2022 Volume 21, No. 3

What is Family Systems Theory?

When people ask me about my job, I lie—a little bit. When someone asks me what I do, I say, “I’m a family therapist." More often than not, they then ask, “So, like a psychologist?” This is when I lie. I say, “Yes, like a psychologist.” It’s not a total lie. Like many psychologists or [...]

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March / April 2022 Volume 21, No. 2

Systemic Racism and the Asian American Community

Johnny Kim, PhD, who has presented at AAMFT conferences, and his 16-year old daughter were on the way to her school when she told him about a school newspaper article she was writing concerning hate crimes directed at Asian Americans, designed to address the Atlanta shooting where six women of Asian descent were killed. He [...]

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March / April 2022 Volume 21, No. 2

Family Evacuation After the Collapse of Afghanistan: 100,000+ Stories Yet to be Told

Migration of People Across the Globe: An Ancient and Contemporary Circle Every family therapist is engaged, in one way or another, with the constant and ubiquitous migration of humans across the globe. It is the nature of families, of history, and of hope, to mobilize one’s resources and one’s people, and travel in search of [...]

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March / April 2022 Volume 21, No. 2

MFTs and the Lingering Problem of Child Separation at the Border

While child separation at the border and the country’s immigration policy for the last decade have become hot-button political issues, therapists are likely to simply see the need for the many children and families involved to get help with the trauma the nettlesome problem has caused. Experts say the combination of the terrible conditions in [...]

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January / February 2022 Volume 21, no. 1

Couple- and Family-based Psychosocial Interventions for Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health

Based on: Evidence base review of couple- and family-based psychosocial interventions to promote infant and early childhood mental health (2010-2019). Jennifer W. Kaminski, PhD, Lara R. Robinson, MPH, Helena J. Hutchins, MPH, Kimberly B. Newsome, MPH, and Caroline M. Barry, MPH | January 2022 Journal of Marital and Family Therapy Most mental and behavioral problems [...]

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January / February 2022 Volume 21, no. 1

Couple and Family Therapy for Substance Use Disorders

Based on: Couple and family therapy for substance use disorders: Evidence-based update 2010-2019 Aaron Hogue, PhD, Jeremiah A. Schumm, PhD, Alexandra MacLean, MA, and Molly Bobek, MSW  |  January 2022 Journal of Marital and Family Therapy Substance use disorders (SUDs) occur when an individual continues to use alcohol or other drugs despite experiencing problems related [...]

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