Rewriting Family Scripts: Improvisation and Systems Change

Overview

Families can develop self-destructive routines so predictable that members seem to be following a script - each coming in on cue as the plot unfolds. Such scripts can be altered, however, when families in therapy learn how to improvise new patterns of relating. Rewriting Family Scripts presents an innovative approach to doing just that - incorporating into family therapy elements of script theory and recent findings in attachment research, including those related to narrative. Developing a new systemic attachment...
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Overview

Families can develop self-destructive routines so predictable that members seem to be following a script - each coming in on cue as the plot unfolds. Such scripts can be altered, however, when families in therapy learn how to improvise new patterns of relating. Rewriting Family Scripts presents an innovative approach to doing just that - incorporating into family therapy elements of script theory and recent findings in attachment research, including those related to narrative. Developing a new systemic attachment concept, "the secure family base," from which individual members can feel safe enough to explore and improvise new scripts, author John Byng-Hall shows how families can change insecure relationship patterns both during and after therapy. Clearly written, jargon-free, and illustrated with detailed clinical case material, this book presents a comprehensive conceptual framework that illuminates the central issues of family therapy practice. Filled with insight into theoretical foundations as well as practical suggestions for clinical practice, Rewriting Family Scripts is a valuable resource for family therapists of all orientations, attachment theorists, family theorists, and other readers interested in understanding and improving family dynamics.

Resolving care-control conflicts/positive framing of parenting scripts/scripts in formation of a new family/etc.

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Editorial Reviews

Journal of Family Psychotherapy

"I strongly recommend this book for advanced clinicians in the field of family therapy. It is practical and readable yet provides a comprehensive theoretical perspective that is well grounded in the literature and thoroughly explained."--Journal of Family Psychotherapy
Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry

"Extraordinary....This book should take its place next to Minuchin's Families and Family Therapy on the shelves of all psychiatrists and others who work with children, adolescents, and their families. It is a classic. "--Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry
Journal of Family Therapy

"This long-awaited book is the culmination of 25 years of practice by one of Great Britain's foremost family therapy practitioners and trainers....It is an eminently practical and accessible book and provides us with a powerful tool with which to explore the complex links among individual, interaction, and system."--Journal of Family Therapy
Youth Today

"Rewriting Family Scripts, extremely human and at times very funny, comes highly recommended."--Youth Today
Journal of Family Psychotherapy
"I strongly recommend this book for advanced clinicians in the field of family therapy. It is practical and readable yet provides a comprehensive theoretical perspective that is well grounded in the literature and thoroughly explained."--Journal of Family Psychotherapy
Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry
"Extraordinary....This book should take its place next to Minuchin's Families and Family Therapy on the shelves of all psychiatrists and others who work with children, adolescents, and their families. It is a classic. "--Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry
Journal of Family Therapy
"This long-awaited book is the culmination of 25 years of practice by one of Great Britain's foremost family therapy practitioners and trainers....It is an eminently practical and accessible book and provides us with a powerful tool with which to explore the complex links among individual, interaction, and system."--Journal of Family Therapy
Youth Today
"Rewriting Family Scripts, extremely human and at times very funny, comes highly recommended."--Youth Today
Booknews
Outlines--largely without jargon--an approach for therapists to help families alter self-destructive routines. Incorporates elements of family therapy, script theory, and recent findings in attachment research into a systemic attachment concept, "The secure family base," from which individuals can feel safe enough to explore and improvise new scripts. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781572300668
  • Publisher: Guilford Publications, Inc.
  • Publication date: 1/15/1998
  • Series: Guilford Family Therapy Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 288
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.89 (h) x 0.89 (d)

Meet the Author


John Byng-Hall is a Consultant Child and Family Psychiatrist at the Tavistock Clinic. He has published widely on topics such as family myths, legends, and scripts; attachments within the family; adolescence; and the impact of chronic illness within the family. He has also presented his ideas at international conferences. He was trained at Cambridge University, University College Hospital London, the Maudsley and Bethlem Royal Hospitals, and at the Tavistock Clinic. He is a past Chair of the Institute of Family Therapy, London.
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Table of Contents


I. From Scripts to Improvisations
1. Secure Enough to Improvise
2. The Nature of Scripts
3. Identification across the Generations
4. Rewriting Family Scripts
5. A Case Example
II. Creating a Secure Family Base
6. Security in the Family
7. Therapy and Supervision as Secure Bases
8. Myths and Legends about Security
9. Resolving Care-Control Conflicts
10. Resolving Distance Conflicts
11. Positive Framing of Parenting Scripts
III. Reediting Scripts in Changing Circumstances
12. Scripts in Formation of a New Family
13. Grieving Scripts
14. Disrupted Scripts: Family Breakup and Disability
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