The Gestalt Approach
Because it’s a relational approach, Gestalt is well-suited to working with families. Gestalt takes into consideration the complexities of family systems, and the complexities of the cultural and societal fields within which these systems arise.
We’re pleased to report many successful outcomes in understanding the family unit that comes to counselling as a rich group of individuals – each with their own yearnings, and the group itself having its own dynamics and yearnings.
We’ve worked with siblings, mothers and children, father and children, in-laws and members of wider family groups.
The Family System
The family can be considered as a complex system of interlocking and interacting personalities where the desires and hopes of the individuals adjoin and conflict with the interests of the family as group.
There is a family group unconscious, just as there are the unconscious aspects of each of the individuals. There is also a natural hierarchy, where the parents are the natural leaders and the children fall into line with the parents’ authority. Or so it is in an ideal situation.
The King and Queen
We see couples and sometimes family members where the natural order has been subverted. Why and how this has happened can be complex to sort out. But it’s worth the work to sort it out – to help restore the natural order and return the parents to their natural position as King and Queen of the household. Everyone is relieved (because it works best this way)!
The simple understanding that it is within the power of the parents to restore the kingdom can have powerful positive effects on the behaviours of the children.
- See also: An Adult Attachment Primer
Here are some of the issues we deal with in Family Counselling. In some cases we see the parents together; in other cases we see other family members as well.
- Management of Autism and ADHD
- Behavioural issues
- Parenting Concerns
- School Performance
- Children’s Health
- Sibling Rivalry.
Adult Family Resolutions
We work with adult siblings who want to clear up unresolved issues from their childhoods together.
We also work with adult child-parent pairs, to resolve what are sometimes long unresolved issues.