Tyson Alexander's Archive

Multigenerational Transmission Process

4 Commentsby   |  10.03.09  |  Uncategorized

Multigenerational Transmission Process, coined by Murray Bowen, is a hypothesis that states that relationship patterns in previous generations can serve as a model for functioning in future generations (McGoldrick, Gerson, & Petry, 2008). This would mean that a good deal of how we learn to interact with one another, especially in our nuclear families we learn from our families of origin. This is also how we see cycles of dysfunction repeating itself within families. This makes sense as we grow up around our families and see their interactions and therefore develop our own understanding of normal behavior. More »

Tyson Alexander's Comment Archive

  1. Interesting questions Dean. In relation to the question about can the model be applied to parenting, I would have to answer yes.

    I instantly thought of the stereotypical tee-ball parents who force their kids to be involved in everything even if the child does not want to be involved at all. The parent forces relationships onto their child. Or what if the parent when growing up was quite popular and their child struggles making friends and is socially awkward? The parent would more than likely work as the over functioning member of the system forcing the child to be the under functioning member. I think parenting can very much be affected by this model of dysfunction.

    Great post Dean!!

  2. Tyson Alexander on Differentiation
    9:05 pm, 09.16.09

    Differentiation can be a tricky thing, like Tara said, is differentiation always the answer? I think that overall yes, the goal should be differentiation, but at times it might not be the best. For instance, a couple during a crisis may find that being more enmeshed may help them get through a time of crisis. For example at the loss of a child a couple may find solace only in themselves and for a time may be enmeshed.

    However, I do believe that overall the goal should be differentiation. In the example, a season of this couple’s life might lean more towards enmeshment on the continuum, but swing back towards differentiation after the crisis. This is probably just a rewording of Tara’s question, but can there be a continuum of differentiation that fluctuates depending on the context of peoples lives?

    I also agree, that differentiation is a very western view and ideal. Families from other cultures might not understand this concept or even see a need for it. Tara mentioned China, I spent some time in Chile a couple of summers ago and found a very similar experience with the family culture there. How does this affect our therapy outcomes with families of different cultures? This should definitely be something to be aware of.

    Oh, and bravo on the Reba and Miley Cyrus references in your blog…bravo!