Family of Origin

Like it or not, our family of origin is a laboratory where we learn how to live life. The script we use to interpret ourselves and others and make sense of the world is written during the formative years when we are dependent on those who raise us. For many people, that script can range from being insufficient to deeply distorted and damaging; leaving us grossly ill-equipped to handle life.

These problems can begin to manifest in:

  • Strained, destructive or damaged relationships
  • Chronic confusion about one’s life direction
  • Self-injurious habits
  • Ruts
  • Addictions
  • Pervasive sense of disconnection from oneself, others or God

For many people these faulty foundations, family myths and messages established in our earlier years have never been examined until a roadblock, crisis or tragedy compels us to reach out for help.

Counseling for issues arising from family of origin include:

  • A family genogram (used to depict generational patterns)
  • Story telling (used to contextualize memories and reduce shame)
  • Identifying family myths, rules and messages
  • Cognitive restructuring (learning new ways to think about self, others, life)
  • Differentiation of self from the family system (finding your true self)
  • Identifying and grieving the losses
  • Rebuilding and renewal (finding the new you!)

Family of Origin Specialist: