Despite all the good intentions that most parents have in raising us children, many of us still feel the wounds from our childhood, which can interfere with our hopes and dreams for how we want to live our lives. We may try to be a different kind of spouse or parent than what we saw modeled for us, but unconsciously, we may be holding onto ineffective patterns and acting them out in our new relationships and families.
We carry our pain in the form of shame, low self-esteem, depression, anxiety, resentment, or just a lack of joy in our lives. Many of us seek out individual therapy to relieve ourselves from these unwanted burdens, but sometimes, until we meet with our original family of origin, these changes are very hard to make.
In my 30+ years of teaching Family Dynamics and Therapy at the California Institute of Integral Studies and many other bay area graduate schools, hundreds of students have brought in their families for in-class sessions, in an attempt to better understand their family’s dynamics and transform the roles they have all taken on for many years. It is remarkable to see how much transformation can occur in just one session.
By creating a safe container, in which each member of your family gets to express themselves fully, from their hearts and minds, conversations can be had with these important people in your life that you may not have been able to have before. With guidance, you can actually learn to communicate with one another in a deep, honest, and authentic way, which creates the intimacy everyone has been longing for all these years.
In addition to working with “adult children” and their families of origin, I have spent many years working in clinics and in private practice with families where the children/teens/young adults are still living at home and the conflicts are more obvious and intense. Core Focused Family Therapy works equally well with this kind of situation.