Family Attachment Narrative Therapy
The first few years of a child’s life is important. If a child gets early nurturing, they will feel protected and feel they live in a safe environment. If they live with abusive parents, they will feel traumatized and bring the pain their parents gave them onto other people. Family Attachment Narrative Therapy is about healing the long-term effects of early childhood trauma.
Children ages 3-21 years experience issues related to adoption, trauma, and disrupted attachment. Psychologist Joanne C. May came up with this mode of therapy in 1995 after working for four decades in foster care and adoption settings as well as residential treatment and clinics by combining trauma, attachment theory, and narrative theory.
When children receive stability, security, and attentiveness from their parents, they can form healthy attachments moving forward. When abuse, neglect, and trauma come into place, children can end up being violent, abandoned and experience physical and emotional harm. Abusive parents are a source of fear, making children experience anxiety and adopt their parent’s behaviors as they feel that is that way they should be behaving. By using narratives, parents can help their children rewrite these traumatic narratives into positive stories.
First, therapists conduct an assessment to see whether or not the family is a good candidate for this therapeutic approach. Treatment normally lasts two weeks with daily sessions. There are narratives four narrative. Claiming narrative is when parents describe how they would have liked to have parented their child as a baby and to imagine the helpless child needing love, protection, security, and nurture. Developmental narrative is when the parents speak about the developmental stages of their child and share their hopes and dreams for future developments. The trauma narrative is when the parents tell fairy-tale type stories that feature a protagonist who experiences challenges similar to the ones faced by the child. The successful child narrative is parents telling a story of a capable protagonist overcoming obstacles and achieving success.
Family Attachment Narrative Therapy can help those with anxiety, PTSD, sibling attachment, abuse and neglect, adoption and foster care, and other behavioral issues. It is been proven to improve the wellbeing of parents and allowing them to feel empathy. At the Family Attachment and Counseling Center in Minnesota, 92.5% of children showed improvement in functioning. This mode of therapy will strengthen the bond between parent with child turning into loving and nurturing people.
Castle Craig is one of the most established and respected addiction rehab centers in the UK. Castle Craig’s family therapy involves promoting recovery, exploring the impact of addiction, discovering adaptive strategies, residential family programs, and two joint sessions with the patient and the therapist. For information, call our 24 hour free confidential phone-line: 0808 256 3732. From outside the UK please call: +44 1721 788 006 (normal charges apply).
Page last reviewed and medically fact-checked | November 15, 2017