Health issues within the family system are common stressors for all families throughout the life span. There is an obvious systemic impact of illness on the family as the disease process often creates stress, role changes, fear for the future, sadness, and efforts to try to cope as effectively as possible. These experiences with health issues can create a crucible effect for the family. This crucible metaphor refers to a vessel used in the manufacture of steel. This vessel is able to withstand great heat and pressure to produce a product that is stronger than the component parts. During the creation of steel, impurities are also burnt off and discarded. When a family works effectively together during an illness, they can develop additional strengths and ...

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