• Entry
  • Reader's guide
  • Entries A-Z
  • Subject index

Second-Order Family Therapy

Family therapy is distinct from other psychotherapy modalities in that the presenting problems of the family are seen as a result of interactional patterns; therefore, problems are addressed relationally rather than individually. The problem is seen as created by what is happening interpersonally in the family system, rather than created from within or intrapersonally. First-order family therapy developed in the 1950s as a linear process that allowed for an understanding of what is “healthy” or “normal” behavior. These boundaries aligned with the practice of therapy. The therapist was able to function outside of the family system as an observer, determine the “problems” within the system, and act as an expert.

Second-order family therapy, which was influenced by postmodern thinking, emerged in the 1980s and challenged the ...

  • Loading...
locked icon

Sign in to access this content

Get a 30 day FREE TRIAL

  • Watch videos from a variety of sources bringing classroom topics to life
  • Read modern, diverse business cases
  • Explore hundreds of books and reference titles