Bowen structure


I conducted an interview with my mother to try and establish thehistory of my family. My parents have had an extremely goodrelationship throughout their marriage and I was interested to knowhow they met. According to my mother, they met with my father duringa vacation for their families in the United States. The two familieswere on a vacation in the same place and that is how the relationshipbetween my mother and father started. The family constitutes ofnumerous people and the family dynamics have resulted in effectiveand strong relationships between the various family members. Thefamily dynamic, according to my mother, has resulted in raisingchildren who are well behaved and who understand the needs of afamily. Communication has been the primary uniting factor in thefamily. Despite the nuclear family having six children, theinteraction and the communication between them has been strong anduniting.

The family triangle started off as a two people dyad between myparents. However, as research has indicated, such triangles are proneto anxiety and can break easily (Khasgiwala, 2013). The family grewthrough getting children and later the triangle involved more thantwo people. The anxiety between the members was now distributedamongst the various members of the family. Aunts, uncles,grandparents and the siblings are all members of the family triangle.This has made the relationship between and amongst the variousmembers strong.

The relationship process between the various family members has beencharacterized by various differentiation and anxiety episodes.Different members of the family deal with such issues differentlywith some members being influenced by the ideas and opinions of otherfamily members (Wachtel, 2012). Family relationships are largelyaffected by emotions which lead to anxiety. It is essential for allfamily members to be able to pursue their goals and dreams withoutbeing distracted by the various emotional factors affecting familyrelationships (Zeng, 2010). In my family, my uncle has been cited ashaving been extremely emotional. This is the same case with mygrandfather and the trait is said to be intergenerational. Thisconclusion was arrived at after my brother was also diagnosed withdepression. He reacts to issue with emotions and more often than notcompromises the relationship between the family members.

Reactive distancing has been a common strategy that is used by somemembers of the family (Lehman, 2012). In instances when there isanxiety in the family, some members will opt to walk away rather thanget involved in resolving the issues affecting the family. Thesefamily members include my brother is suffers from depression, as wellas my father. These members miss largely on vital family topics whichmight be discussed in their absence. According to the interview thatI conducted, it was abundantly clear that the various members of thefamily have varying levels of differentiation. People deal withissues affecting them differently (Sullivan, 2011). Life hasdifferent demands and the various family members have been able todeal with the demands of life while pursuing their goals undisturbed.However, it is worth stating that the various family members havebeen unable to cope with the demands and have resorted to alcoholismand drug abuse.

The has been extremely useful in learning the familystructure. I have been able to find out how family members deal withthe various demands of life, as well as the various family trianglesand how they affect the family relationships (Nichols, 2012). Heinterview provided critical insight into the family relationships andthe history that has been keeping the family together.


Nichols, M. P. (2012). Family therapy: Concepts and methods (10thed.). Boston: Pearson

Sullivan, E. (2011).&nbspThe astrology of family dynamics.York Beach, Me: Weiser Books

Wachtel, E. F. (2012).&nbspFamily dynamics in individualpsychotherapy: A guide to clinical strategies. NewYork [etc.: Guilford Press.

Khasgiwala, A. (2013). Family dynamics: Social work perspective.New Delhi, India: Anmol Publications.

Zeng, Y. (2010).&nbspFamily dynamics in China: A life tableanalysis. Madison, Wis: Univ. of Wisconsin Press.

Lehman, J. D. (2012).&nbspUnderstanding marriage, family, andintimate relationships. Springfield, Ill: Charles C Thomas.