Wednesday, November 15, 2017

weekly theme :: FAMILY DYNAMICS

Author: Sifu Matt Carver

In preparation for the Thanksgiving holiday, this week's theme will focus on Family Dynamics.  Let's incorporate the genogram and have clients reflect on what their ideal family environment looks and feels like and how they can play a part in nurturing the ideal family environment for the holidays.  Here's some motivation from our Clinical Director/Therapist, Ryan Thompson.

As humans, relationships are integral to just about every aspect of our lives. What has been the quality of those relationships? Early in life, our family of origin, whether it be in a nuclear family, adoptive family, or institutions such as boarding homes or foster homes have been our first experiences of learning to engage in relationships. These early experiences of family dynamics often have a lasting impact on the quality, types and patterns of our future relationships. Maybe some relationships have been healthy and supportive while others have been a source of pain, mistrust, disappointment and sadness. These relationships are a significant factor in the formation of our lenses of perception. If our relationships have been of a toxic origin, how do we change them, how do we become aware that "normal and expected" is often a formulated perception based upon familiarity even if toxic or volatile relationships is the norm. 
In life, we will run into other people moving on their path of life whom have developed their own relationship styles, systems and strategies. In order to stop repeating toxic and maladaptive relationship patterns that maintain substance use disorders through codependency, enabling, resentments, in-authenticity and manipulation we must raise awareness of the dynamics we have learned from our early family experiences. Then we must learn the characteristics and techniques that lead to healthy relationship dynamics such as trust, respect, effective communication, authenticity and how to set healthy boundaries. As we move forward in life and as we meet the other people on their journey we have an opportunity to forge relationships that are made of denser and more reliable material.

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