Introduction to Systemic Therapy with Individuals: A Social by Fran Hedges

By Fran Hedges

Lately, the advantages and functions of systemic remedy with members, as well as its extra conventional perform with households, has been more and more well-known. this crucial new textual content presents trainees and practitioners new to this technique with a full of life, available and carefully useful creation to the most important theoretical ideas and methods.

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Sample text

Are you more distressed about the shame, the unfairness, or is it that you are missing your children? ’ Helen asked. ‘I miss Rory’ she sobbed. ’ Elisabeth had consented to her first child being fostered to give him a ‘better chance in life’ as her circumstances at the time made it difficult for her to cope. ‘I’m a bad mother’ she reiterated. 32 APPROACHES TO EMOTION AND THE SELF Helen knew that historically, because of economic pressures in the West Indies, men were not involved with childrearing as they were forced to seek work away from their wives and children.

This leads to a much richer idea of the ‘self’ from the one ‘I’ in our culture that stands for one’s body, physical location, moral obligations, autobiography and so on. The self, in cultures like ours, ‘influenced by the Judeo-Christian moral system . . means having a sense of myself as a moral agent, located in a network of mutual obligations and commitments’ (Harré and Gillett 1994: pp. 103–4). The ‘sense that one is agent of one’s actions and responsible to others for them, is something that we acquire through learning the lan43 SYSTEMIC THERAPY WITH INDIVIDUALS guage and cultural conventions’ (p.

The meaning and expression of the emotion of ‘anger’ has altered over the past three centuries say Stearns and Stearns (1988 in Harré and Parrott 1996). In seventeenth-century England and Massachusetts bodily sensations and private feelings were considered irrelevant in the conception of anger. The display of anger was purely an expression of judgement of what someone else had done: expressing outrage and engaging in reprimand. From another direction altogether, and counterintuitively, Laird and Apostoleris (1996 in Harré and Parrott 1996) describe some of the ‘literally hundreds’ of studies that show that when people are induced to act as if they felt something, they do, indeed, feel it (pp.

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