Overview of Behavioral and Cognitive-Behavioral Couple and Family Therapies

Topics: Family therapy, Psychology, Term Pages: 2 (379 words) Published: March 11, 2014
Behavioral and cognitive-behavioral couple and family therapies (CBFT) are a group of related therapies based on the behavioral and cognitive-behavioral approaches originally developed for working with individuals. The most influential of these therapies are the following: •Behavioral Family Therapy: This therapy focuses on parent training (Patterson & Forgatch, 1987). •Cognitive-Behavioral Family Therapy: This therapy was developed by several therapists to integrate cognitive elements into therapy with couples and families (Dattilio, 2005; Epstein & Baucom, 2005). •Integrative Behavioral Couples Therapy: This is an enhanced version of behavioral couples therapy, which was demonstrated to be effective in the short term but not in the long term; a humanistic component emphasizing acceptance of one's partner was added in an attempt to improve long-term outcomes (Jacobson & Christensen, 1996). •Gottman Method Couples Therapy: This is a scientifically based approach to couples therapy based on Gottman's 30 years of research on the key differences between happy and unhappy marriages (Gottman, 1999). Although Gottman's approach is not an empirically supported treatment, its treatment goals are well supported by research data. •Functional Family Therapy: This is an empirically supported treatment for working with troubled teens and their families. Behavioral and Cognitive-Behavioral Family Therapies In a Nutshell: The Least You Need to Know In the general mental health field, cognitive-behavioral therapies (CBTs) are some of the most commonly used therapeutic approaches. They have their roots in behaviorism—Pavlov's research on stimulus-response pairings with dogs and Skinner's research on rewards and punishments with cats—the premises of which are still widely used with phobias, anxiety and parenting. Until the 1980s, most of the cognitive-behavioral family therapies were primarily behavioral: behavioral family therapy (Falloon, 1991) and behavioral couples...
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