2nd Edition

Family Therapy An Introduction to Process, Practice, and Theory

By Michael D. Reiter Copyright 2025
    452 Pages 80 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    452 Pages 80 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Family Therapy, second edition, is a fully updated and essential textbook that provides students and practitioners with foundational concepts, theory, vocabulary, and skills to excel as a family therapist.

    This book is a primer of how family therapists conceptualize the problems that people bring to therapy, utilize basic therapeutic skills to engage clients in the therapeutic process, and navigate the predominant models of family therapy. The text walks readers through the process of thinking like a family therapist, and each chapter utilizes various learning tools to help the reader further understand and apply the concepts. Chapters explore the history, context, and dominant theories of family therapy, as well as diversity, ethics, empathy, structuring sessions, and assessment. Written in a comprehensive and approachable style, this text provides readers the foundational skills and tools essential for being a family therapist, and allows students and practitioners to work relationally and systemically with clients. The second edition widens its scope of the family therapy field with updated research and four brand-new chapters.

    This is an essential text for introductory family therapy courses and a comprehensive resource for postgraduate students and the next generation of family therapists.


    I.                    THINKING OF A FAMILY THERAPIST

    Chapter 1             History of Family Therapy

    Chapter 2             General Systems Theory                                                            

    Chapter 3             Self of the Therapist                                                                  

    Chapter 4             The “Client”                                                                   

    Chapter 5             Considering Diversity       

    Chapter 6             Ethics of Family Therapy                                                          

    II.                  SKILLS OF A FAMILY THERAPIST

    Chapter 7             Beginning the Family Therapy Session                                                    

    Chapter 8             Basic Empathy Skills                                                                 

    Chapter 9             Advanced Empathy Skills                                                         

    Chapter 10           Mutualization                                                                            

    Chapter 11           Effective Use of Questions                                                                                     

    Chapter 12           Use of Self in Therapy                                                                              

    Chapter 13           Dealing with Intensity      

    Chapter 14           Assessments (Kayleigh Sabo & Michael D. Reiter)                                              

    Chapter 15           Goal Setting & Termination                                                      


    Chapter 16           Intergenerational Family Therapies                                           

    Chapter 17           Experiential Family Therapies                                                                 

    Chapter 18           Strategic Family Therapies                                                                                     

    Chapter 19           Systemic Family Therapies                                                                                    

    Chapter 20           Postmodern Family Therapies                                                                  

    Chapter 21           Integrative Family Therapies

    Chapter 22           Expansion of Family Therapy                                     



    Michael D. Reiter, Ph.D., LMFT, is an AAMFT Approved Supervisor, 30-year therapist, and a full-time faculty member for over 20 years. He currently teaches and supervises at Capella University.

    “In this insightful guide, Reiter demystifies the world of family therapy, equipping you with the foundational skills and theories you need to navigate even the most challenging situations. In this book, complex concepts come to life through vivid descriptions and practical exercises. You will get to step into the family therapist's shoes and explore the thought processes, actions, and theoretical underpinnings that guide effective family therapy.”

    Natalie Rothman, Ph.D., Nova Southeastern University, USA, Assistant Professor, Clinical Director, Brief Therapy Institute

    Michael D. Reiter's second edition sets a new benchmark for comprehensive guides in the field of family therapy. With precision and insight, Reiter's structured approach not only cultivates the mindset of a seasoned family therapist but also empowers practitioners to navigate their roles with unparalleled efficacy. From the foundational theories to the nuanced applications, this book seamlessly bridges the gap between theory and practice, providing a roadmap for transformative interventions in even the most intricate relational landscapes. Whether delving into the captivating discussions of its early chapters or unlocking the profound insights of its advanced sections, readers will emerge armed with the arsenal of skills essential for orchestrating meaningful change within complex familial dynamics.”

    Kelsey Railsback, Ph.D., LMFT, Touro University Worldwide, USA; Associate Professor, MFT Program

    “Embark on an enlightening journey through the intricate world of Marriage and Family Therapy with this accessible and comprehensive guide. Delve into the rich tapestry of the field's history, providing essential context for budding clinicians. From foundational theories to practical "how-tos" of family therapy, each chapter offers a wealth of knowledge tailored to various learning styles.

    This meticulously crafted text goes beyond mere information dissemination. Bolded key concepts, illustrative figures, and real-life examples adorn its pages, ensuring a dynamic and engaging learning experience. Whether you're a student navigating the complexities of family therapy or an instructor seeking a robust resource, this book is an indispensable companion. Unlock the secrets of effective therapy practice and lay the groundwork for a fulfilling career in Marriage and Family Therapy.”

    Shaelise Tor, Ph.D., LMFT, Instructor, University of Rochester, Department of Psychiatry, Child & Adolescent Services