The reason why I chose to be a “family” therapist was because our families are so important to us – and tend to impact us the most.
Think about it…We are born into a family and it is there that we develop our belief system that seems like the truth to us. We are born needing ATTENTION. If we don’t get physical attention – we die. If we don’t get emotional attention, we die in a different way. We are born powerless and helpless and it is up to our caretakers to instill a sense of trust and safety. We look to our primary caretakers to see how they navigate power, value, feelings and security. As we grow, we start looking for approval and acceptance from our “tribe”– pushing us into roles and rules that may not feel good to us. It can put some of us into survival mode.
Becoming aware of the way you personally navigated growing up in your family of origin can assist you in healing. Not to blame anyone – or make them wrong – but to become aware of strategies that may have come on board that may no longer be helpful.
Making a choice to bring in your family for treatment and healing is a courageous one. It can have a positive generational effect for years to come.
If your family is unwilling to attend treatment, Family Constellation work is a great alternative. Larry Kessler www.helphealingtrauma.com holds a monthly meeting at the Jewish Community Center in Long Beach. Family Constellations is an approach for revealing the hidden dynamics in a family so that they can be worked with and healed. Developed by Bert Hellinger, Family Constellation technique involves family representation through the use of others. People are strategically positioned into family roles, including a person in place of the client, in order to bring the family dynamic to fruition. Through non-verbal communication, each member is engaged in a form of cohesive and independent communication that serves to represent the true nature of the family. The representatives are instructed by the facilitator, Larry Kessler, to act on the emotions of each person involved. By doing this, light is shed on the different aspects of the family unit. In a startlingly real way, the family dynamic is accurately depicted and is oftentimes recognized by the members of the family for the first time. Each person is intrinsically linked by what is referred to as a morphongenic field. This sense of connectedness is felt telepathically and is acutely present in family situations.
Effects of Family Constellations
Throughout your entire life, you maintain an emotional and energetic connection to your family, regardless of how physically distant you may be from them. This method of enlightenment creates a very powerful and moving experience. People who participate in this technique often find themselves unearthing emotional reactions regardless of their age. Each member of a family, whether adult or child, longs to feel significant and find their place within the family construct. This can lead to long term healing of the family system.