Michigan Family Institute Newsletter
March 2013
What We Do     Specialty Services     Staff     Contact     mifamilytherapy.com     248-593-4784
In This Issue
THE POWER OF THE ENNEAGRAM FOR LEARNING ABOUT YOUR PERSONALITY
HIGH CONFLICT DIVORCE: RIFE FOR TEENAGE ACTING OUT
 

BOOKS 
 

(Guilford Press 1996)
Jerome A. Price
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(Impact Publications 2011)
Margerum J, Price J, and Windell J 
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(Impact Publications 2007) 
Gaulier B, Margerum J, Price J, Windell J 

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(Zeig-Tucker Publications 2003) Price J, Margerum  J 

CLINICAL AND EDUCATIONAL GROUPS

 

  

Take Control of Your Divorce

  

Learn to manage the conflict in your divorce

  

with Dr. Judith Margerum

  

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Circle of Friends

  

A middle school aged social skills group

 

with Lynn Ernst

Margolis,  MSW, LMSW 

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The Right to Be the Grownup

A parent skills training program for difficult teens and pre-teens 

 

with Jerome A. Price, MA, LMFT, LMSW 

 

 

 

SPEAKERS' BUREAU 


As a courtesy to the many trusted professionals who refer to us, we offer presentations for staff development and for parents in schools or treatment programs at no charge.
Subjects are many and varied and can be coordinated with your program's needs.

Just call or email us




info@mifamilytherapy.com





THE POWER OF THE ENNEAGRAM FOR LEARNING ABOUT YOUR PERSONALITY

Jerome A. Price, MA, LMFT, LMSW

 

 
The Enneagram is an ancient system of personality typing. It was developed by the Sufis to help Sufi monks identify the presence of their egos and to then help them get their egos to stop interfering with their spiritual endeavors.

Those same ego structures interfere with our happiness, concentration and overall mental health. In the 1980's modern psychologists began studying the Enneagram and what it has to offer people who want to live a better life or those with emotional problems.

Most notably, psychologist Helen Palmer began integrating the Enneagram into her clinical work with very positive results. She and others utilized the Enneagram's nine personality types with it's three possible subtypes to help people understand what was interfering with their happiness.

The most obvious benefit to Enneagram study is for us all to recognize that we each have a lens we view the world through. These lenses have been understood for centuries. At the very least there are twenty-seven different perspectives. Knowing that explains a lot about why couples have trouble understanding each other and why the way I make sense of the world doesn't necessarily match how you make sense of it. This knowledge opens the door to greater tolerance and understanding.

Lawyers and therapists can better understand and get through to their clients. Teachers and other school personnel can track more closely why students use certain methods for dealing with their problems that interfere with their education.   

 

For example, three of the types are emotion- based and filter information and experience through their feelings. Three other types, or triads, filter the world cognitively and intellectually. The subtleties of these six types alone open a great many possibilities for understanding communication impasses and lifestyle differences. 

 

Most importantly, understanding our own ego types can open the door to stepping out of knee-jerk reactions to life. Knowing when our specific ego structures are dictating our responses we can learn to become awake to a wider world of responses and sensations and step out of our emotional patterns which were built for protection. In a way, all of us have become one-trick ponies and need to learn a wider range of tricks.

 

Palmer, Helen, The Enneagram: Understanding yourself and the others in your life, Harper One, New York, 1988.

Riso, Don Richard and Hudson, Russ, Understanding the Enneagram: The practical guide to personality types, Houghton Mifflin, 2000. 

         HIGH CONFLICT DIVORCE: RIFE FOR TEENAGE ACTING OUT

                                 

  Judith Margerum, Ph.D.

 

Traversing teenage years is full of  crises and change involving significant hormonal and physical changes, relationship issues, individuation and the pressure of figuring out what they want to do for the rest of their lives! The family  provides a secure base from which to deal with these struggles. Being able to depend on parents for acceptance and love as well as guidance and clear expectations makes life at home secure although not conflict free.

       

A divorce on top of normal adolescent struggles can result in family instability, parents in crisis, uncertain finances and living situations that are up in the air. If the divorce is high conflict the teenager may be pulled (or may jump) into the middle of the conflict or the adolescent's needs may take a backseat to the struggles between the parents.

      

Both of these scenarios divert the youth's attention from their lives and maturational tasks. If a parent allows or encourages a youth to side with them, the parent child boundary is violated giving the child an inappropriate sense of power. Teenagers may take sides for benevolent reasons such as to protect a parent they feel has been wounded. They may also take sides for more selfish reasons such as a bigger house, promises of cars, computers, etc.  This inappropriate sense of power often results in acting out, defiance, manipulative behavior and even substance abuse. It may also cause significant internal turmoil because the youth has had to betray one of the parents. This may result in anxiety and depression.

    

Just as damaging is the adolescent left in charge of their own lives whose homework is no longer being checked, whereabouts are not being verified and who may be skipping family dinners so that telltale signs of drug use might be missed. They will slip further through the cracks when parents abdicate responsibility. Adults often think that teenagers do not need them but they require just as much attention as younger children although in a different way.

       

Adolescents often escalate their behavior until their parents have no choice but to come together and take charge. Well-meaning professionals and other adults may want to be empathic to youth in these situations but this means getting them out of power and getting parents back in charge. Helping parents get their teenagers out of these positions as quickly as possible is important because the longer it goes on the more difficult it is to change.  

   

   

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248-593-4784