This practical breakthrough introduces a robust framework for family and couples therapy specifically designed for working with difficult, entrenched, and court-mandated situations. Using an original model (the System for Observing Family Therapy Alliances, or SOFTA) suitable to therapists across theoretical lines, the authors detail special challenges, empirically-supported strategies, and alliance-building interventions organized around common types of ongoing couple and family conflicts. Copious case examples illustrate how therapists can empower family members to discover their agency, find resources to address tough challenges, and especially repair their damaged relationships. These guidelines also show how to work effectively within multiple relationships in a family without compromising therapist focus, client individuality, or client safety.
Included in the coverage:
Using the therapeutic alliance to empower couples and families
Engaging reluctant adolescents...and their parents
Parenting in isolation, with or without a partner
Child maltreatment: creating therapeutic alliances with survivors of relational trauma
Disadvantaged, multi-stressed families: adrift in a sea of professional helpers
Empowering through the alliance: a practical formulation
Therapeutic Alliances with Families offers powerful new tools for social workers, mental health professionals, and practitioners working in couple and family therapy cases with reluctant clients and seeking specific, practical case examples and resources for alliance-related interventions.
Valentin Escudero, PhD, is a Professor of Psychology at the University of A Coruna, Spain, and Director of the Family Intervention and Care Research Unit (UIICF). The UIICF is a Family Therapy Center, where four prestigious programs of family therapy research and family therapy training have taken place from 1999. A psychotherapist and family therapist widely recognized by European institutions, Escudero is also an Adjunct Clinical Professor at the University at Albany, State University of New York, USA. He was a Visiting professor for three years at the Vrije Universitate Brussels (2007-2011) and a Visiting Researcher at the Centre for Family Policy and Child Welfare, at the University of Bristol, UK (2006-2007). Escudero is co-author with M. Friedlander and L. Heatherington of the SOFTA (System for Observing Family Therapy Alliances). Associate Editor of the Journal of Family Therapy, he has published in the Journal of Family Therapy, Journal of Marital and Family Therapy, Psychotherapy, Psychotherapy Research, and Journal of Counseling Psychology. Aside from his respected profile as researcher, Escudero is the Director of the Therapy Program for Vulnerable Children and Families, which is the primary program of psychotherapy for the Child Protective Services of the Galician Regional Government (a program that includes 7 therapy centers).
Myrna L. Friedlander, PhD, is a Professor in the Counseling Psychology PhD program at the University at Albany/State University of New York, where she served as Training Director from 1999 to 2016. She has supervised master's and doctoral students for over 35 years and published more than 140 book chapters and journal articles, including several self-report instruments and observational coding systems, primarily related to the processes of psychotherapy and supervision. She has co-authored two books, Critical Events in Psychotherapy Supervision: An Interpersonal Approach (2005), and Therapeutic Alliances with Couples and Families: An Empirically Informed Guide to Practice (Friedlander, Escudero, & Heatherington, 2006). A Fellow of the American Psychological Association, she has served on the editorial boards of six journals and received awards for her lifetime contribution to research by the University at Albany, the Society for Counseling Psychology (American Psychological Association), and the American Family Therapy Association. A licensed psychologist in New York State, she has been in independent practice for over 30 years.