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Psychodynamic family therapy is an approach to family therapy that integrates classical Freudian psychoanalytical theory’s interest in the unconscious aspects of individual personality development and function with an interest in the social context, and especially the family context, in which individual and relational dysfunction develops. Most of the pioneers of psychodynamic family therapy were physicians trained in Freudian psychoanalysis who, with the birth of the systems paradigm in the 1960s and 1970s, came to view Freud’s individually focused psychoanalytical ideas as antiquated and inadequate. In therapy, the Freudian psychoanalyst addressed relationships with real events and people only as those events influenced a client’s unconscious internal conflicts. Today, however, proponents of psychodynamic family therapy tend to view individual conflicts and relational patterns as interlocking systems that ...

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