What Is Bowen Family Systems?

Bowen family systems theory is a theory of human behaviour that views the family as an emotional system where members are emotionally interdependent. Therefore the functioning of one member cannot be fully understood without the context of the people with which they are closely involved. A change in one person’s functioning is predictably followed by reciprocal changes in the functioning of others. Heightened tension can intensify the processes that promote unity and teamwork that may lead to problems.

Part of the goal of family systems therapy is to achieve healthy, balanced relationships within the family. It also considers familial patterns in a historical context. The connectedness, and reactivity make the functioning of family members interdependent, and Bowen Family Systems incorporates this depth into the work of personal change.

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