Structural Family Therapy Theory : A Critical Analysis Of The Family In Ordinary People

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The movie Ordinary People is a movie which looks at a family struck by tragedy, It shows how an upper middle-class family handles life when tragedy strikes unexpectedly, and family order is turned into chaos. The movie in essence sheds light into a family, due to a tragedy, has turned into separate individuals living in the same house, who lack of communicating their grief effectively. The movie was shown through a realistic lens, without over dramatization; looked into misplaced guilt at every level. The inability of the family to work through the tragedies lead them to a place where they each felt a breakdown within each other as well as the family dynamic. The family consists of the mother Beth, father Calvin, and their son Conrad who are living in the aftermath of the death of the oldest son Buck. Conrad, who has attempted suicide and hospitalized because he inability to overcome grief and misplaced guilt, and therapy as way to feel more in control. Beth on the other hand always favored Buck and does not connect with Conrad. Whereas, the father Calvin is trapped in trying to hold the family together, but those pressures are building and he is coming to realizations of his own. Structural Family Therapy Theory: According to Nichols and Davis (2017), family structure refers to the way a family is organized into subsystems (Nichols & Davis, 2017). The movie Ordinary People, during the first interaction between Beth and Calvin, we see there is a disconnect within the
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