Date of Paper

5-2012

Type of Paper

Clinical research paper

Degree Name

Master of Social Work (M.S.W.)

Department

Social Work

First Advisor

Andrea Nesmith

Abstract

This study examined clinicians’ experiences providing filial therapy when working with untreated siblings. Three semi-structured interviews were conducted to gather data for this study. The interviewees were clinicians providing filial therapy services in Minnesota. The results highlight that treatment is focused on one identified child, clinicians have experienced untreated siblings exhibit their own difficulties, the relationship between the parent and untreated sibling often benefits from filial therapy, and the parent’s ability to generalize parental skills is an important component of filial therapy. The results showed varying experiences of the clinicians providing filial therapy. Clinicians often experience the untreated sibling as exhibiting their own difficulties, such as jealousy and relationship conflicts with their parents. The study also demonstrated that clinicians have experienced the parent’s ability to generalize skills and ultimately benefit the untreated sibling when providing filial therapy. Reliability and validity for this study was moderate to high. Questions were designed to answer the main research questions of how have clinicians providing filial therapy experienced untreated siblings? Further research should examine how at-risk untreated siblings are of developing maladaptive behaviors of their own and potentially needing their own services in the future. Research on parent’s perception of untreated siblings would provide more insight into the untreated siblings and how they are affected by filial therapy.

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