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Family Constellations are a form of therapeutic intervention that falls within the framework of Gestalt Therapy, in which fundamental importance is given to images. From the images that appear in the constellation, you can understand and try to recompose the family system of the person who consults.
- 1 Differences between Gestalt therapy and traditional therapies
- 2 The importance of family order
- 3 Each member must be in his or her place
- 4 What it takes to make a constellation
Differences between Gestalt therapy and traditional therapies
Conventional therapies do not give importance to the facts. They only take into account what has happened in the life of the person who consults and, at most, they intervene in the person's relationship with their family or their environment. Bert Hellinger, who is the body of this new approach to therapeutic intervention, gives great importance to the events that occurred in the family: facts related to the life (sexuality) and with death. It is important, for example, the death of parents when the child is still very young, children who died prematurely, war events, traumatic deaths, abortions ... Also important are the events that occurred in reference to sexuality: rapes, former partners ... Also family ruins, emigrations ...
Conventional therapies do not give importance to the facts because they are in the past, in the distant past sometimes. But what Hellinger has discovered, from his experience in constellations, is that when some of these facts have not been sufficiently elaborated, that is, he has not been given importance, he tries not to remember ... in a word, he has remained excluded from family thinking, it is later reflected in a later member of the family, even if they are very distant, the facts affect the family system, family soul, as Hellinger calls it. This family soul is like a network, like a consciousness that encompasses the whole family. The members of a family are united by invisible bonds and love ... and when a fact has not been accepted, or someone has been excluded, the family soul does not tolerate it.
The importance of the family order
In a constellation we must always consider who should be reintegrated into the family and give it a place in our hearts. It may be an aborted child, it may be a father who died prematurely, it may be a relative who considers himself the black sheep of the family, it may be a first woman or girlfriend who does not want to remember for any reason: he was harmed, he was belittled ... These excluded are always represented by another subsequent member of the family reappear in the family system. It is like a new opportunity that the system is granted to heal.
Family members are deeply united by love, always, but for this love to help our growth, it must be ordered. This order implies that later members should not be awarded situations that are from the previous ones. Sometimes children are so attached to their parents or their ancestors that they were excluded, that they died ... that they want to follow them. Follow them in death, in illness ... or in problems. For example: an abusive father is expelled from the family. The son feels bound to the mother and cannot love the father. If I wanted to, it would be like a lack of loyalty to it. The boy says: "I will never be like my father" But, in such a case, many times the boy ends up being an abuser. Why? Why this would be a way to love his father, to make him present in the family.
How could this situation be avoided? The mother could avoid it by giving the son permission to love the father. She has to honor the father in the son, because if he does not do so, the son has a good chance of becoming an abuser. This example would be that of blind love (as Hellinger calls him). Sewing is always done for love. In this case, for love, a later (the son) has been awarded something that is from the previous one (the father). It's about love, but messy.
The order is related to welcoming everything that comes to us from life, from those who gave us life: "good" and "bad." For example: we know that a grandfather was a murderer. It is serious, it caused pain. But the grandson, to be free, must be able to respect the fate of the grandfather, accept it and leave the blame with him. Otherwise, it will bear this fact of the family system and will not be able to free itself of its weight. The faults must be left where they occurred. You have to respect everything that happened and give it a place. Good love works when order is respected and does not work when it is not done.
Each member must be in his own place
Good love involves honoring parents and all of the above. All traditions of wisdom, all religions are based on honoring parents. And they don't distinguish between good and bad. Children should not interfere in what concerns their parents, their ancestors ... Between the couple, between friends there must be a balance between giving and receiving ... between parents and children will always be unbalanced. Because parents are the big ones and they give (they gave us the greatest gift: life) and the children are the little ones and they receive.
Hellinger talks about the family conscience. The son feels that in order to be part of his family and consider himself innocent He cannot be richer, happier, wiser than his parents. For example: he cannot be happy with his partner, because his mother was not happy with his. If I were happy it would seem a lack of consideration to the mother, who could not be. It must be possible to overcome a certain guilt to be, have, live longer than the previous ones.
What it takes to make a constellation
- That the person who wants to constellate has a clear demand and / or connected with the pain (for example, it cannot be constellated solely out of curiosity)
- That I can visualize what would your life be like if not there was the problem you presented
- That he knows and can communicate the events that occurred in the family
The constellation therapist does not drive, accompanies. And he doesn't work only with whom he consults but with his family. The therapist does not perceive the person alone but his whole family system... and also works with the group through it. The group has of being centered, as present as possible. And in that way, many times the constellation is not only for those who constellate but that each one can feel touched by one or another aspect of what It is working.
From the constellations, reconciliation works with oneself and with their family system and the acceptance of reality, as it is, as shown... It is a very rich work and that can bear fruit, perhaps immediately, but, many times, it is like a small seed that will not be shown until later, after months or even years.