Families, Illness, and Disability: An Integrative Treatment Model

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BasicBooks, 1994 - Psychology - 320 pages
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When a family member is diagnosed with cancer or faces challenges from living with a disability, the impact reverberates throughout the family, leaving no one untouched. How should a clinician help the parents of a child who is critically ill? How can a marital relationship be skewed and a child's well-being compromised when a parent becomes permanently disabled - and how can a clinician best intervene in such cases? In presenting his clinically powerful Family Systems Illness Model, John Rolland addresses these and other vital questions of importance to families in which there is a member with a major illness or disability. Rolland's integrative treatment model is based on his experience with more than five hundred families, first as Founding Director of the Center for Illness in Families while at Yale University and currently at the University of Chicago. He applies it to a broad range of disorders that affect adults and children over the entire course of an illness and at all stages of the life cycle. Richly illustrated with varied case examples, Families, Illness, and Disability is unique both in describing this comprehensive model and in providing a highly practical guide to effective intervention. Through a normative, preventive lens, the book's useful framework shows how the biopsychosocial demands of different illness and disabilities create particular strains on the family, how the stages of an illness affect the family, how family legacies of loss and illness shape their coping responses, and how family belief systems play a crucial role in the ability to manage health and illness. Practitioners will learn how to help families live well despite physical limitations and theuncertainties of threatened loss, how to encourage empowering rather than shame-based illness narratives, how to rewrite rigid caregiving scripts, how to encourage intimacy and maximize autonomy for all family members. With its superb integration of individual and family modalities, this outstanding book is ideal for all health and mental health professionals and students who work with illness, disability, and loss in a wide variety of clinical settings.

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About the author (1994)

John S. Rolland, M.D., is clinical associate professor of psychiatry and founding codirector of the Center for Family Health at the University of Chicago and its affiliate postgraduate and couples therapy training institute, the Chicago Center for Family Health. He is also a lecturer at Yale University School of Medicine.

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