Structural Family Therapy.

For this Discussion, review the “Petrakis Family” case history and video session (transcript and case study provided below).

Post (using two concepts of Bowen’s family theory) a discussion and analysis of the events that occurred after Alec moved in with his grandmother up until Helen went to the hospital. If you used the concepts of structural family therapy, how would your analysis of the situation be different? Which family theory did you find to be most helpful in your analysis? Finally, indicate whether Satir’s or Minuchin’s model is the more strength-based model. Why?


Banmen, J. (2002). The Satir model: Yesterday and today. Contemporary Family Therapy, 24(1), 7–22.

Answer preview

Using Structural Family Therapy (SFT), my analysis would differ as I would view the mental illness in the family as the source of dysfunction, that is, Magda’s dementia and Helen’s anxiety problems. SFT would guide my analysis in focusing on the possible change in the family structure as a form of treatment rather than encouraging change in the family members. During my review, I found the family systems theory as the most helpful. It is my opinion that Minuchin’s model is more strength based as compared to Satir’s model as it considers patients as assets who are resourceful and can withstand significant levels of adversity while maintaining their sobriety. The model focuses on the internal strengths of individuals, groups, and families and is optimistic.

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