Psychology Question


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Answer 3 questions per chapter. Answers should be typed under each question and highlighted. If the question has a * it countsas two questions.

Chapter 1 – Adopting a Family Relationship Framework

1. Entrance into a family occurs by birth, adoption, or through marriage or other committed relationships. Compare the characteristics of family membership (loyalty, support from others, closeness) of two people in your family, each of whom joined the family by different routes. How are they different and how are they alike?

2. In what type of family structure did you grow up- intact, one led by a single parent, stepfamily? Has divorce of a family member or members played a role in your life? If so, describe the impact of divorce on your experience. How have you been affected by family members whom you think should divorce but haven’t?

3. What are the expectations you have about the family structure you will be part of in five years? Twenty years? Forty years? Try to frame your answer around a discussion of your attitudes toward marriage, divorce, and extended families.

4. Shared family rituals help insure family identity and continuity. List some of the rituals you recall in growing up. Comment on the place and influence of those experiences in your later life.

5. *All families face challenges: an unexpected death, the divorce, job loss, retirement. What resiliency factors were available in a challenging situation in your family? How did family reorganize itself, solve problems, and cope with threat? Can you identify the support system that helped your family in a crisis?

6. How would you describe your own ethnic background? Describe some influences on your values, attitudes, and present behavior that can be attributed to that background.

Chapter 2 Family Development: Continuity and Change

1. Describe the vertical and horizontal stresses around a crisis time in your family (death, illness, financial setback, moving to a new location)

2. In many families, adolescents are the focus of much attention, as if they and not the family system are the basis of family conflict. What was going on with your family members at the time of your adolescence that contributed to family harmony or disharmony?

3. Will you or have you left your family’s home to live alone or with others? If so, how did your mother and father react to this stage in family development? Were their responses different from each other How?

4. At what age do you think it is appropriate to get married? How have your background and family experiences shaped your attitudes toward marriage and its appropriate time in your life?

5. Did you ever live in a single parent led family? If so, what were the significant consequences for the family (economic hardship, grief, loss of support system, etc.)? Were there any family resilient factors that emerged?

Chapter 3 – Gender, Culture, and Ethnicity- Factors in Family Functioning

1. Which of your parents played a more nurturing role in raising their children? Did this activity have high or low status in the family?

2. You often hear the phrase “It’s a guy’s thing.” Discuss a recent incident you have experienced where gender might have provided an explanation for the behavior.

3. How do you experience women who are assertive and driven and men who are passive and emotionally vulnerable? Take an honest assessment of your views. How might your thoughts and feelings influence your work as a therapist?

4. Did you grow up with same sex or opposite sex siblings or both? Where were you in the birth order? How did these experiences affect your attitudes regarding gender issues?

5. Name and describe some ways in which gender-based rule or sexist attitude or stereotypic sex role assignment affected the kind of adult you became.

6. Did your mother work outside the home? How did that affect the distribution of power in the family?

7. Did your father ever lose a job or suffer significant economic loss? If so, how did it affect him? Did it affect the distribution of power in the family? If so, how?

8. What strengths, if any, have you acquired by bypassing traditional gender roles? Any special enjoyments from breaking the rules? Any significant mishaps?

9. *Family therapist must try to distinguish between a client’s family’s patterns that are universal(common to a wide variety of families), culture-specific (common to a group, such as African Americans or Cuban Americans or perhaps lesbian families), or idiosyncratic (unique to this family? In their assessment of family functioning. Identify patterns in your family that seem universal, culture-specific,and idiosyncratic. Identify any conflicts among these patterns and describe how they affected you.

Chapter 4 – Interlocking Systems: The Individual, the family, and the community

1. All families have certain unspoken rules, such as: no discussion of sex; deny mother’s drinking; never raise your voice; if you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all. What were some of the rules in your family of origin?

2. A “marital quid pro quo,” in which one partner in a relationship gives something to the other in exchange for something else, is present in all couple relationships. Can you recount some of the marital quid pro quo experiences your parents established? What about the rules in your current relationship?

3. Homeostasis refers to the family’s self-regulating efforts to maintain stability and resist change. Identify and describe one instance from your family life when a return to stability and resisting change was a benefit and one instance when a successful return to stability maintained or introduced a serious problem.

4. Crisis occurs in all families. Some are resolved relatively quickly, others linger. Describe two such situations in your family – one in which homeostasis was restored quickly, another in which resolution was more difficult.

5. How permeable was the parental boundary when you were growing up? What effect did the relative openness or closeness of your family boundaries have on your development?

6. Depict your family graphically by creating an ecomap. Include the systems with which your family had contact (schools, medical services, churches, community centers, etc.)

Chapter 5 – Origins and Growth of Family Therapy

1. Is there someone in your family who has been diagnosed as being schizophrenic or otherwise seriously mentally ill? Describe the reaction to the illness by various family members, and how their reactions affect family functioning.

2. Were any of the following patterns recognizable in your family of origin? Marital Skew, Marital Schism, Emotional Divorce

3. The term “emotional divorce,” (Gregory Bateson), describes the emotional distance or vacillation between over closeness and over distance that parents of schizophrenic children often feel because of this stressful mental health situation. What examples, if any, are you aware of in your family history?

4. *Double-bind messages occur with varying frequencies in everyday life. Can you give an example of such a transaction from home, school, or work where you were double bound? What did you do? What was the accompanying affect? What would have happened had you tried to interrupt the sequence?

5. Describe a family you know, saw on tv or read about it in a book in which the members appear loving and understanding, but on closer observation are actually separate, distant, and unconnected. What happens to a child in such a family?

6. What are your personal attitudes toward group or individual therapy? Which would be better for you? Why?

Chapter 6- Professional issues and ethical practices

1. In seeking professional help, what questions would you ask a potential provider regarding his or her training, professional experiences, and licensing?

2. Your family’s health insurance is handled through a managed care arrangement. You select a therapist from their provider list, but are told that confidentiality cannot be guaranteed absolutely, since after several sessions the therapist must report details of the treatment to receive authorization to continue and for you to received reimbursement. How would you respond? What is your opinion?

3. If you were seeking family therapy, how important would it be for you to check on whether the therapist’s practice was evidence-base? How would you go about finding out? Why is this approach important to you?

4. Is sexual intercourse between a therapist and a client ever justified? Explain your point of view.

5. Suppose you as a therapist find out from a family that they were seen previously by a therapist who, according to their statements, abandoned them when they could no longer afford treatment. What are your professional responsibilities in this matter? What are your options? How would you proceed?

6. A close friend informs you that she had sexual intercourse with her former therapist and asks you if you think she should tell her current therapist. What do you advise? Why?

7. You must tell a family who has asked that you cannot guarantee confidentiality since you must discuss your cases with your supervisor. The wife reacts negatively and says she will not continue treatment under such circumstances. The husband and two children remain silent. What do you imagine yourself feeling in this scenario? What will you do?

Chapter 7 – Psychodynamic Models (Freud, Adler, Sullivan)

1. In your opinion, should family therapists emphasize the past or present? Explain your position.

2. How deeply do you think your relationship with your own parents from birth on affected the development of your personality? And how do you think the unconscious aspects of these relationships might affect your work with clients?

3. *Do you know of any special conditions surrounding your birth or early childhood that would have encouraged or discouraged a particularly strong and enduring attachments to your mother? Do you generally feel close, distant, loving, anxious, relatively comfortable, angry, or frightened when you are with your mother? What might the relationship be between how she interacted with you when you were very young and how you experience and understand your personality today?

4. Do you think that the client could ever deeply, even permanently, affect the therapist? Why or why not?

Chapter 8 – Transgenerational Models (Bowen) Contextual Therapy – (Borszormenyi-Nagy)

1. Would you say that you and your siblings exhibit comparable degrees of individuality? Is one or more independent that the other? How does the family interact with the more independent and more enmeshed members? Explain.

2. *Identify as best you can any unresolved attachment issues with respect to your family. If you are aware of any, do you see how they might affect the way you interact with your choice of boyfriend, girlfriend, spouse, or partner? Describe and explain.

3. What resources can you find from the history of your family that sustain or enrich your life today?

4. Family legacies dictate debts and entitlements. What legacies did you inherit? Were you expected to be an athlete, a musician, a failure, etc.? How have you carried those legacies into your current relationship?

Chapter 9 Experiential Models (Whitaker, Satir)

1. How would you feel about having your grandparents (separately or together) in a family therapy session with you and your parents? What special problems would arise? What special advantages might there be?

2. Whitaker took the position that each person in therapy is, to some degree, a patient and therapist to one another. Discuss your reaction to this statement.

3. How comfortable would you be as a therapist disclosing personal aspect of yourself to your clients?

4. *Virginia Satir contended that the way the family communicates reflects the feeling of self-worth or its members. Dysfunctional communication (indirect, unclear, incomplete, unclarified, inaccurate, distorted, inappropriate) characterizes a dysfunctional family system. Describe your family’s communication style and assess the sense of self-worth you believe each member feels and of the family as a whole.

5. What repetitive, negative interactive patterns restrict optimal functioning in your family?

6. The use of co-therapy as an effective therapeutic technique has been debated. List some pros and cons and state your position. How do you imagine you would feel working with a co-therapist?

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