Phases Addressing Crisis Intervention
Joining entails the development of a relationship with and a commitment to each member of the family. Establishing a clear understanding of the members’ multiple perspectives of the crisis fosters therapist connection with and responsiveness to the whole family.
Establishment of an accurate assessment entails an understanding the type of crisis the family has faced. Next, the therapist determines the individual and family resources and perceptions associated with the crisis and the family’s ability to manage and adapt to the crisis. Finally, the assessment includes a consideration of the individual member and family resiliencies and vulnerabilities.
Contracting involves the obtaining of, not only family consent, but also the “buy-in” necessary to collaboratively address the crisis with the family members. Goals are focused on accomplishing both short-term relief while placing the priority on long-term, sustainable solutions that moderate the effects of stressors.
Effective interventions provide opportunities to highlight larger patterns of family crisis responses. Interventions also identify available resources, explore alternative perceptions, foster improved individual and family resiliencies, and minimize individual and family vulnerabilities.
A family is ready for termination when they manage and adapt to a crisis effectively, generalize learning and coping to other stressful issues, discover and behaviorally demonstrate alternative narratives that do not incorporate crisis-perpetuating patterns, and express reduced fears or concerns about handling stressful situations.