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Family Process
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Family Process Heft 3/2004
1/2004 - 2/2004 - 3/2004 - 4/2004 - Überblick

Imber-Black, Evan (2004): Editorial: September 11, 2004: The Third Anniversary. In: Family Process 43(3), S. 275-278

Scheinkman, Michele & Mona DeKoven Fishbane (2004): The Vulnerability Cycle: Working With Impasses in Couple Therapy. In: Family Process 43(3), S. 279-299.

abstract: In this article, we propose the vulnerability cycle as a construct for understanding and working with couples' impasses. We expand the interactional concept of couples' reciprocal patterns to include behavioral and subjective dimensions, and articulate specific processes that trigger and maintain couples' entanglements. We consider the vulnerability cycle as a nexus of integration in which "vulnerabilities" and "survival positions" are key ideas that bring together interactional, sociocultural, intrapsychic, and intergenerational levels of meaning and process. The vulnerability cycle diagram is presented as a tool for organizing information. We suggest a therapeutic approach for deconstructing couples' impasses and facilitating new patterns through deliberate modes of questioning, a freeze-frame technique, stimulation of calmness and reflection, separating present from past, and elicitation of alternative meanings, behaviors, empathy, and choice. This approach encourages the therapist and couple to work collaboratively in promoting change and resilience.

Driver, Janice L. & John M. Gottman (2004): Daily Marital Interactions and Positive Affect During Marital Conflict Among Newlywed Couples. In: Family Process 43(3), S. 301-314.

abstract: The mundane and often fleeting moments that a couple experiences in their everyday lives may contribute to the health or deterioration of a relationship by serving as a foundation to major couple events such as conflict discussions and caring days. This study examines the role of playfulness and enthusiasm in everyday life to the use of humor and affection during conflict. Using observational methods, we studied 49 newlywed couples in a 10-minute dinnertime interaction and in a 15-minute conflict discussion. The conflict discussion was coded using the Specific Affect Coding System (SPAFF; Gottman, Coan, & McCoy, 1996), and a new observational system was developed to capture dinnertime interactions in a seminatural setting. We analyzed the data using path analysis and found a stronger path model when the direction of correlation moved from daily moments to the conflict discussion. These findings provide preliminary support for the importance of daily moments in couple relationships, but this research was strictly observational and therefore correlational, so further research is necessary to determine direction of causation.

Wampler, Karen S., Bruce Riggs & Thomas G. Kimball (2004): Observing Attachment Behavior in Couples: The Adult Attachment Behavior Q-Set (AABQ). In: Family Process 43(3), S. 315-335.

abstract: Knowledge as to how attachment behavior is observable in couple interaction can be very useful to clinicians who use attachment theory or related theories to guide their work with couples. The development of the Adult Attachment Behavior Q-Set (AABQ), a 100-item Q-sort designed to be consistent with Main's Adult Attachment Interview (AAI) coding system, is described. Videotaped discussions were coded for a sample of 28 couples. The majority of the couples were married and had sought therapy for couple problems. Reliability of coding was adequate. Evidence for validity was promising, with a match of 84% between the AAI and AABQ for secure versus insecure, and 70% for the three categories of secure, dismissing, and preoccupied. Even though additional reliability and validity information are needed for the AABQ, it holds promise for providing insights into couple dynamics that could be useful in guiding interventions and in evaluating the outcome of couple therapy.

Dickerson, Victoria C. (2004): Young Women Struggling for an Identity. In: Family Process 43(3), S. 337-348.

abstract: In this article, I propose that many young women in today's world are facing an intense internal struggle to find their identity, and that this struggle is an effect of what they experience as enormous pressure to achieve certain goals. My belief is that, in the contemporary atmosphere of postfeminism in which women seemingly have many more options, the young adult woman experiences these options as expectations. The effect of these demands is an enormous self-doubt where women feel worthless, unimportant, and often unable to go forward in their lives. This article focuses on the stories of 3 young women and their struggles: a 25-year-old White middle-class woman whose obsessive longing to find the "right" man leads to eating difficulties; a 23-year-old lesbian, also White, who is just graduating from college and believes that she is terminally depressed; and a 29-year-old Chinese American woman who has fought anxiety and chronic fatigue for most of her adult life. How they find their way clearly exemplifies both the struggle and the road to success-overcoming self-doubt and challenging the expectations that create the conditions for it.

Montgomery, Edith (2004): Tortured Families: A Coordinated Management of Meaning Analysis. In: Family Process 43(3), S. 349-371.

abstract: Torture is known to affect both the individual and the family. The aim of the present study was to reach a better understanding of the significance of communication and information about parental exposure to violence in torture-surviving families. The theoretical background is Social Constructionism and Coordinated Management of Meaning (CMM). In-depth interviews were carried out with 14 members of 3 Middle Eastern refugee families living in Denmark in which the father had been exposed to torture. The 3 families experienced their life stories and situations as refugees in very different ways, ranging from meaninglessness, discontinuance, and alienation to a sense of community, solidarity, and openness. Communications about past events were related to such meaning-providing contexts. The way in which parents talk with their children about torture and organized violence can be understood in terms of "stories told" and "stories lived." When stories told (e.g., the experience of torture and organized violence) are in contradiction to stories lived, a situation of ambiguity and uncertainty is created. The meaning-providing contexts for making sense of the family history of violence and exile can be more or less coherent or contradictory, and might result in a strengthened relationship or confusion, powerlessness, and action paralysis. Clinicians can help traumatized families deal with their past histories of violence by paying attention to such ambiguities and contradictions.

Haber, Russell & Lita Hawley (2004): Family of Origin as a Supervisory Consultative Resource. In: Family Process 43(3), S. 373-390.

abstract: This article describes the rationale and methodology of a supervisory approach that recruits family-of-origin members as resources to help resolve professional dilemmas. We have found that professional impasses resonate with family-of-origin themes. As supervisory consultants, family-of-origin members have access to family stories, rules, myths, and resources that can provide new messages for a more differentiated use of self in the clinical setting. The standard format of this family supervisory consultation is separated in three phases. First, the supervisor discusses and explores the nature of the supervisee's professional dilemma (i.e., difficulty with angry clients). Second, the supervisor explores the evolution of this same theme through the historical and personal stories of the family-of-origin members. Third, the supervisee anonymously presents a specific case that exemplifies this theme. The supervisor, along with consultation from the family, focuses on the development of a more flexible use of self in the therapeutic system. Thus, the session begins and ends with the professional development of the supervisee. However, there is personal sharing during the second phase, so there are sections that address developmental, supervisory, and ethical considerations. Even though the goal of this meeting is to promote professional growth, personal and family changes are common by-products. Four supervisory anecdotes illustrate this approach to supervision.

Lawson, David M. & Daniel F. Brossart (2004): The Developmental Course of Personal Authority in the Family System. In: Family Process 43(3), S. 391-409.

abstract: The present study examined the differences in participants' intergenerational family relationships across the following three age/stage groups based on Williamson's (1991) theory of Personal Authority in the Family System (PAFS) and adult developmental theory (Levinson, 1986): ages 18-23, 24-29, and 30-45. The most noteworthy variables were intergenerational intimacy and intimidation with mothers and fathers, with significant but less contribution by intergenerational triangulation with fathers. Results indicated that each successively older group reported significantly less intimacy and less intimidation with each parent, and less triangulation with fathers than the previous younger group. Small gender differences were also present, but without an interaction with age/stage groups. Females reported slightly healthier intergenerational relationships with parents than did males. Finally, implications for clinical practice are presented.

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