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The Genogram as a Tool to Understanding The Role and Relationships of a Family

Apart from the use of genogram to interpret the medical history of a person, it also offers a pictorial display of a person’s family relationships. The family genogram as a basic procedure is used in therapy sessions to provide the facts that enable the work to begin on the family of origin of each partner. The importance of plotting a genogram will provide information where each came from a family of different structure and process. It will also demonstrate how each person was influenced by their parents’ model of marriage (Brothers, 1997).

It will help partners understand each other better without the need to blame or attack each other. It is also a valuable vehicle for disclosing triangular relationships, assumptions about marital roles, rules that were operating in each family regarding relationships, communication, differences, and expression of emotions to reveal the wounds that were not healed in early efforts. How I see my mother I see my mother, Eloise Moore, as a disciplinarian. As a result of my mother’s (past) lifestyle which consisted of resorting to alcoholic drinks, it somehow affected how she communicates to me and siblings.

Her verbal and physical forms of discipline consisted of expression of profanity and beating her children especially when she was drunk. Her chosen form of discipline may be seen as rather a mean approach yet I also know it is her own way of trying to be a good mother. Traits of my mother that I find desirable My mother is a woman of strength who is able to stand up for herself and having a strong-willed nature that doesn’t let anyone run her over. The traits of being strong-willed and the ability to easily voice out opinions are the traits of my mother that I wish I have emulated.

Traits of my mother that I least like My mother also has least desirable traits as I have witnessed. The traits of a mother that my mother that I find the least desirable is being alcoholic, her chosen approach of discipline to children, inability to spend quality time with her children, and being short tempered. The combination of these least desirable traits became impediments on a good family interaction. Children of Alcoholics The fact of having a mother who was an alcoholic once in her life, her children, including me, fit the category as children of alcoholics.

Studies have shown that the presence of an alcoholic parent severely disrupts family interaction and equilibrium, which in turn causes child psychopathology. The critical aspect of disrupted family functioning, however, has yet to be isolated (Chess, et al, 1988). There was no marital conflict between my mother and father thus it could explain why a few children of an alcoholic parent do not develop problems in terms of coping. Other possible specific factors include disrupted family routine, inadequate parental guidance and nurturance, and modeling of maladaptive coping style. Effects of Parental Alcoholism

In the case of my mother who used to regularly consume alcoholic drinks; this vice presents itself as a stressor to the family. The effects of parental alcoholism need to be seen within a theoretical framework that considers multiple stressors on children. A combination of several stressors potentiates each other leading to a greater impairment than the effects of a single stressor. There are possibilities on the development of children who will either fare worse or develop resiliency (Chess, et al, 1988). As a child of an alcoholic, I may have developed coping competence growing up.

Instead of expecting the nurturing care of my mother, I made active use of an informal network within her family (through my father) for advice and assistance and an acquired sense of meaning and faith about life. How I see my father Given the alcoholic background of my mother, I found it easier to get along with my father, Samuel Moore. I have fond memories with my father while I was growing up such as memories of spending quality time to sit down and exchanging jokes with him. He shared his liking of sweets by taking me and the rest of our family out for ice cream twice or thrice a week.

I find it endearing to have a father who fulfills his role as a father with whom I can talk to about any problems about home, school or other developments in my life. Traits about my father that I like the most The desirable traits of my father that I look up to are being calm, easy going and more laidback. My father, in contrast to her mother, doesn’t drink nor fuss. He has a composure and understanding especially when things don’t turn out the way he wants them. I’m glad I emulated these traits such as not letting people, events or situation get the best of me.

I highly regard my father thus I can’t determine any negative traits about him. My parents and their roles as husband and wife The aspects of the marriage of my parents that I perceived to be desirable are the ways my mother fulfill her role as a wife and my father fulfill his role as a husband. My mother gives her full attention to the needs of her husband such as preparing meals, trimming of nails, among other things. She often shower loads of gifts for my father on every occasion especially during his birthday. My father, on the other hand, has his way of reciprocating his affections to his wife (or my mom).

He handled the role as a provider very well by taking care of the bills which is his own way of spoiling my mother. I’m usually able to get along with my mother now that she turned into a new leaf. She is an active church member and has banned herself from being an alcoholic. Also, she continues to spoil my father up to this day. I found no exceptions of getting along with my father due to the paternal closeness developed when I was younger, The closeness we developed serves as a strong foundation of my relationship with my father. Pam’s marriage

When I got married, I longed for a husband to be almost the same as my father. During the years of my marriage, I found out that my husband doesn’t have the same traits of her father. Yet, he have also good traits of his own. There was no issue when it comes to taking care of the bills given my husband is also a good provider. The task in which I hope that my husband can do is to fix broken things around the house. I, in turn, became “the handyman” of our household. My husband can’t fix these things himself. I find no difficulty to change a light bulb and even change flat tire.

One of the ideals of my parents’ marital union that I adapted is how my mother spoils or treats her father well. In effect, I have spoiled every man that I had relationships with. I treat the men in my life how my mom treated my dad, because I thought this is the way it was supposed to be. Conclusion The family genogram is a useful tool to address issues and differences of married couples in terms of being two separate individuals. Marital counseling should take into consideration the objective data drawn out of a family genogram. It enables the work to begin on the family origin of each partner.

There is a perceptual history data on how each partner sees their parents handle their roles as husband/wife as well as mother/father. Thus, the study of the genogram can help determine the issues presented as a problem of conflict between the partners has its roots in the family of origin (Brothers, 1997). The fact that my mother has a past of drinking, it made me grow closer to my father. In turn, it had influenced me on her idea of marriage and how to ideally pamper a partner. I have a high esteem of my father that I hoped to find in my husband.

I find it disappointing that my husband can’t fix things around the house like my father but, at the same time, appreciates my husband as a provider. Thus, it is most helpful to understand the family genogram of both mine and my husband’s when such arguments of these shortcomings arise to prevent any strains in my marriage. References Brothers, B. (1997). When one partner is willing while the other is not. Haworth Press, 34 Chess, S. , Thomas, A. , Hertzig, M. (1988). Annual Progress in Child Psychiatry & Child Development. Psychology Press, 307.

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