“Hi, I’m home.” This greeting has sent a chill into the heart of many parents as they find their adult children returning to the family nest. You man have considered the possibility of your adult children moving back home an impossibility until they showed up with “no place to go.” Whether due to divorce, serious illness, unforeseen economic misfortune or some other circumstances you or someone you know has had their children come back home. Your own financial success may even work as a magnet for your children making decisions even more heart wrenching. Emotions become very intense when options appear to be either sending your loved ones “into the street” or being taken advantage of emotionally and financially.
Fortunately there is hope. The complexities of family emotional functioning can be understood and even predicted with a high degree of accuracy. You may have dismissed the idea of seeing a therapist as too expensive or to “drastic” for your situation. But think about what you’re saying. “Dealing clearly and purposely with my children (and possibly grandchildren) is not worth what I pay my gardener, pool man, or Cable Company.” To say, “I’ll only consider becoming pro-active when things get worse” is to be reactive already and is a self-fulfilling prophecy. Even if you are the successful sibling and are concerned and angry that a brother or sister has boomeranged to mom or dad, you can do more than you may think. Effective, dynamic change is achieved by those who are motivated enough to examine their own part in this emotional “dance” and then change the part they play.
Many of my clients find that that they can begin to make the changes they want after even the first consultation. Being able to see the observable facts of relationship patterns and the part you play in them is essential for making lasting change. I work from the perspective of Bowen Family Systems theory which means that this form of counseling differs from other traditional therapies. This orientation is designed for one session every four to six weeks. (The first 6 – 8 sessions typically are more frequent if tensions are high, but move quickly to the less frequent schedule). Advantages of this powerful relationship consulting are its cost and time effectiveness. You won’t be simply “letting off steam” or adding one more standing appointment to your week. More importantly, you’ll have begun a process that makes a lasting difference on what matters to you most . . . your family.