Structural Theory and Solution-Focused Brief Theory

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Structural Theory and Solution-focused Brief Theory


As a marriage, couple, and family counselor, theories are used to help guide individuals, couples, and families. Theories help with the development of relationships, strengthen connections, and improves negative behavior. Counseling clients will not only help them, but it will also improve the development of the counselor’s practice.

Comparison of Structural Therapy and Solution-Focused Brief Therapy

Structural therapy focuses on the family as a whole. It is concerned about how the issues effect the family relationships and connections. This theory concentrates on how well the understanding is amongst the family members and counselor. The members of the family are prompted to understand how the issues were created, where did the issues come from, when the issues started effecting their family, and what the family needs to overcome their issues. Its focus is to help others understand and improve negative behavior. The structural therapy concentrates on the interaction and boundaries of families with separating the whole family into smaller groups. The subsystems will create a clearer understanding of what issues are hurting their family environment (Gladding, S. T. 2010). The counselor is concerned about the members interaction because this reveals how strong the relationships and connections are in the home. The boundaries are important because they create an understanding that there are limits and order, and the boundaries can be diffused, rigid, or clear (Gladding, S. T. 2010). The counselor is expected to identify techniques so members can understand which boundaries are clear, positive, and healthy (Gladding, S. T. 2010).

When the solution-foc...

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...hem what would they feel was needed to overcome their behavioral issues (Gladding, S. T. 2010). For example, the families would be the pilot of their own airplane with the counselor being there to guide them along the way.


Overall, each theory is effective with the approaches and similar focuses. A marriage, couple, and family counselor is expected to understand families, show them empathy, provide positive guidance, and use effective listening skills. These strategies will not only benefit families, but it will also benefit the counselor’s practice.

Works Cited

Gladding, S. T. (2010). Family therapy: History, theory, and practice (5th Ed.). Boston, MA: Pearson

Szapocznik, J., Schwartz, S. J., Muir, J. A., & Brown, C. H. (2012). Brief strategic family therapy. Couple and Family Psychology: Research and Practice, 1(2), 134–145.
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