November / December 2022 Volume 21, No.6

Treating Families of Young Children with Disruptive Behavior at School: A Systemic Approach

Several years ago, before starting my journey as a marriage and family therapist (MFT), I found myself inside a preschool meeting room, seated across from a row of tense-faced women—a teacher, a psychologist, and the school director. They had a problem on their hands—an oddly precocious five-year-old boy who wouldn’t always cooperate, frequently talked back, [...]

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November / December 2022 Volume 21, No.6

Systemic Perspectives on Perinatal Mental Health: Six Major Changes for Parents

Amy* was sitting slumped on a couch in my office for her initial appointment. She appeared a little nervous but was trying to hold it together. After pleasantries were exchanged, she stated she had her son four months ago, and since then, things had changed a lot around the house and with the family, especially [...]

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September / October 2022 Volume 21, No. 5

Giving Infidelity a New Name: How Clinicians Can Best Support Their Clients

Lonergan, Brunet, Rivest-Beauregard, and Groleau (2021) argue that betrayal from a romantic partner is increasingly considered as a form of interpersonal trauma. Furthermore, about 30%-60% of individuals who are betrayed by their romantic partner will struggle with symptoms of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and anxiety and depression at the clinical level (Lonergan et al., [...]

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September / October 2022 Volume 21, No. 5

Working Systemically with Children In Foster Care

Initial interview with Ken Ken, a 14 year old, was removed from his home by the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS). Systemic clinician: Hello… (introduce names, roles and purpose of today’s session). As you know, DCFS has contacted me and asked if I would meet with you to talk about DCFS’s involvement in [...]

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September / October 2022 Volume 21, No. 5

Family Therapists in Prenatal & Postnatal Care

The journey of becoming a masterful family therapist is lifelong. It is a discovery of clinical refinement as we explore new relational therapy theories, infuse systemic thinking in other fields like maternal health, and find new tools to better serve families. Each time that we meet with families, parents or children, we gain priceless insights. [...]

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July / August 2022 Volume 21, No. 4

Contextual Family Therapy with Incarcerated Families

Ten million children have experienced parental incarceration (National Resource Center on Children & Families of the Incarcerated, 2009). Incarceration can disrupt entire family systems, affecting psychological, physical, emotional, and financial well-being (Kitzmiller, Cavanagh, Frick, Steinberg, & Cauffman, 2020; Tadros, Fye, & Ray, 2020). Incarcerated individuals' families face numerous hardships and are among the most underprivileged [...]

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July / August 2022 Volume 21, No. 4

STUDENT CORNER: Just Another Reason to be Grateful for my Mask

Every clinical hour I’ve obtained so far as a student marriage and family therapist has been through masks or computer screens. I have been accruing hours since September of 2021, and I had my first in-person session at the end of November. It is now March of 2022, I am steadily moving towards my 100th [...]

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July / August 2022 Volume 21, No. 4

Performance-Based Family Therapy: Is anybody better off?

I was a young psychiatry resident at the University of Pennsylvania Medical School;  after two years, I could be seen fleeing from the many different models and innovators, including Professor Aaron Beck, founder of Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT). I was headed, with haste, across campus, to the Philadelphia Child Guidance Clinic (PCGC), where it was [...]

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May / June 2022 Volume 21, No. 3

Supporting Children Through Their Grief Journey

An estimated 1 in 14, or 5.3 million, children in the U.S. will experience the death of a parent or sibling before they reach the age of 18 (Edelman, 2020). This estimate does not reflect deaths from COVID-19, as the analysis will not be released until sometime in 2022. No doubt, many more children and [...]

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May / June 2022 Volume 21, No. 3

The Cost of Chronic Infidelity on Spouses and Partners: Understanding Betrayal Trauma

On a Sunday morning, the bright light of my husband's cell phone woke me up. It was unusual for him to have his cell phone in bed. When he got up, I looked at the phone. Through viewing information on his two cell phones, I discovered that my husband was in the grips of an [...]

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