Try To Stay Focused

Using cultural dimensions – Can be useful reframes to convey the idea to couples that there are forces outside the relationship that profoundly affect them as a couple.
Genogram provide a rich resource when working with couples.

Ch 3 Questioning
Questioning – crucial elements of any therapeutic conversation.
Effects are:
The listeners’ responses: verbal or nonverbal
The relationship of the people in conversation with each other
The context

Circular Thinking – interpersonal perception questions. (ex: what do you think your partner’s experiencing.) sometimes helpful to use relational context questions.

Types of Questions
Exception and Meaning questions.
Future oriented Questions
Reflexive Questions – attribute new meanings to their stories.
Externalizing Questions – identify the dominant themes and beliefs that restrain the couple. Pacing and Timing is important.
p 48  – Examples of Types of Questions and when to use them.

personal trainerCh 4 Creating a Conceptual Map
Understanding and bridging differences is central to defining the human encounter.
Identifying and understanding similarities and differences that exist between couples.

Ch 5 A couple in cultural Transition
Ask Questions
Honoring past connections with the couple’s culture of origin provides and entry into valuable bridges of understanding.
The immigration process involves a loss of the old life together and the hope for a new life.
The couple’s relationship is often overwhelmed by tasks of everyday living that previously were attended to by other. Previous support systems – relatives, frienda and neighbors – are no longer available.
Acculturation may become so demanding for immigrants that scant time is available for them to acknowledge and mourn the losses of their past and familiar social networks.
Locating and discussing information that surrounds the reasons and impetus for immigration are valuable therapeutic tools.
Understanding and Bridging differences
Embracing a multicultural perspective helps people recognize the value of exploring the similarities and differences in couple relationships.

Ch 9 Working With African-American Couples
Name the oppressive forces in the historical context of the dehumanization and devaluation of black individuals challenges dominant discourses.
Acknowledging the family legacies of black history that are unique to the particular family of each partner broadens the context of the presenting problem.
Spirituality and religion are often central in the lives of African Americans, and inclusion of these influences in the therapeutic conversation offers possibilities for an enhanced understanding of couple dynamics.
For white therapists working with African American couples, acknowledging the existence of white privilege raises consciousness and moves one toward giving up the silence about white privilege.
Therapists who are neither white nor African-American and who are working with an African American couple need to “identify the areas of similarity and difference of blacks in relation to people from their own cultures.”

A key point for therapists to keep in mind when working with African-Americans is that expectations of intimate partners often reflect unconscious legacies and beliefs from their slave ancestors.
A key skills involved in the cultural interview are listening and questioning in ways that are respectful, inviting, collaborative.

Because African Americans are constantly are constantly scanning their environment for racist messages, it is important that therapists who are not African American bring issues of race into the dialogue early in the therapeutic work.

Ch 10 Narratives of Interracial Couples
Interracial relationships challenge racism and violate basic beliefs of the dominant discourse.
Choosing a partner outside of one’s race challenges the legacies, loyalties, and allegiances of one’s culture of origin.
Interracial relationships challege the societal belief that partners of different races will not be able to work out their differences.
Interracial partners experince tension that evolves from having both separate and shared identities.
The tension of th partners is reduced when each understand the other’s painful legacies.

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