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9: Milan Systemic Family Therapy




  • Storms, Leslie E.


This chapter discusses the unique aspects of Milan systemic family therapy. The Milan model offered a new way of looking at the family. Additionally, the Milan group emphasized searching for the “pathological nodal point” which would help the family evolve itself into a different form. The Milan model has been criticized for its beliefs on neutrality, specifically, its propensity to overlook the emotional connectedness between the therapist and family. It begins with an intensive, five-part interview, which consists of the presession, the session, the intersession, intervention, and the postsession. The Milan therapist gathers information surrounding the symptom by questioning the family. The Milan model offers the therapist a way of observing the patterns of family interactions and techniques for making therapeutic interventions. The primary tools that the therapist uses will be asking circular questions, stating positive connotations, and including interventions such as a presentation or a letter.