Family and Multi-Family Work with Psychosis: A Guide for Professionals, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Family and Multi-Family Work with Psychosis

A Guide for Professionals, 1st Edition

By Gerd-Ragna Bloch Thorsen, Trond Gronnestad, Anne Lise Oxnevad


152 pages

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Paperback: 9781583917275
pub: 2006-09-14
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pub: 2016-02-09
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Family and Multi-Family Work with Psychosis provides a practical step-by-step guide for professionals treating psychosis using family work.

The authors draw on over ten years of experience working with family and multi-family groups where there are members with a psychotic disturbance. They provide helpful guidance on vital issues, including setting up initial group meetings, crisis intervention plans, group structure, problem solving and communication in the group. Subjects covered include:

  • the stress-vulnerability model
  • the group structure and framework
  • family-work in early psychosis
  • working with families of people suffering from psychosis and substance misuse
  • what can the family do to be of help and support?

This accessible, jargon-free guide will be of great interest to anyone interested in investigating the potential for using family work to treat those with psychosis.

Table of Contents

McFarlane, Leff, Foreword. Bloch Thorsen, Introduction. Grønnestad, The Stress -Vulnerability Model. Johannessen, Psychosis - What is it? Methods. Øxnevad, Psychoeducational Multifamily Group Model. Øxnevad, Invitation to Family Work. Øxnevad, The First Contact: Dealing with the Crisis. Øxnevad, The Second Contact: Mapping the Genealogical Chart. Grønnestad, The Third Contact: Monitoring Early Warning Signs. Øxnevad, Contact Between the Group Leader and the Patient Alone. Grønnestad, The Educational Seminar. Øxnevad, The Group Structure and Framework. Øxnevad, The First Multifamily Group Meeting. Øxnevad, The Second Multifamily Group Meeting. Grønnestad, Problem Solving. Grønnestad, Crisis Intervention Plan. Arntzen, Communication in Groups. Experiences. Fjell, Psychoeducational Family-work in Single-family Groups. Arntzen, Conducting Educational Family-work Among Young Patients. Bloch Thorsen, Family-work in Early Psychosis. Bloch Thorsen, Psychoeducational Family-work Applied to Different Diagnoses. Drug Abuse and Psychosis. Barrowclough, Working with Families of People Suffering from Psychosis and Substance Misuse. Implementation of Psychoeducational Family-Work. Bloch Thorsen, What Qualifications Do Group Leaders Need? Øxnevad, How to Implement Psychoeducational Family-work in an Established System? Øxnevad, What Can the Family do to be of Help and Support? Bratthammer Family, Words from the Family.

About the Authors

Gerd-Ragna Bloch Thorsen is a psychiatrist and teacher of psychotherapy. She is the coordinator of family-work at Stavanger Psychiatric Hospital, Norway and Deputy President of the Norwegian Psychiatric Association.

Trond Grønnestad is a psychiatric nurse and leader of an educational project about mental health.

Anne Lise Øxnevad is a psychiatric nurse and leader of the psychoeducational multifamily group division at Stavanger Psychiatric Hospital, Norway.

About the Series

The International Society for Psychological and Social Approaches to Psychosis Book Series

ISPS (The International Society for Psychological and Social Approaches to Psychosis) has a history stretching back more than five decades, during which it has witnessed the relentless pursuit of biological explanations for psychosis. This tide has been turning in recent years and there is growing international interest in a range of psychological, social and cultural factors that have considerable explanatory traction and distinct therapeutic possibilities. Governments, professional groups, people with personal experience of psychosis and family members are increasingly exploring interventions that involve more talking and listening. Many now regard practitioners skilled in psychological therapies as an essential component of the care of people with psychosis.

A global society active in at least twenty countries, ISPS is composed of a diverse range of individuals, networks and institutional members. Key to its ethos is that individuals with personal experience of psychosis, and their families and friends, are fully involved alongside practitioners and researchers, and that all benefit from this collaboration.

ISPS’s core aim is to promote psychological and social approaches to understanding and treating psychosis. Recognising the humanitarian and therapeutic potential of these perspectives, ISPS embraces a wide spectrum of therapeutic approaches from psychodynamic, systemic, cognitive, and arts therapies, to need-adapted and dialogical approaches, family and group therapies and residential therapeutic communities. A further ambition is to draw together diverse viewpoints on psychosis and to foster discussion and debate across the biomedical and social sciences, including establishing meaningful dialogue with practitioners and researchers who are more familiar with biological-based approaches. Such discussion is now increasingly supported by empirical evidence of the interaction of genes and biology with the emotional and social environment especially in the fields of trauma, attachment, social relationships and therapy.

Ways in which ISPS pursues its aims include international and national conferences, real and virtual networks, and publication of the journal Psychosis. The book series is intended to complement these activities by providing a resource for those wanting to consider aspects of psychosis in detail. It now also includes a monograph strand primarily targeted at academics. Central to both strands is the combination of rigorous, in-depth intellectual content and accessibility to a wide range of readers. We aim for the series to be a resource for mental health professionals of all disciplines, for those developing and implementing policy, for academics in the social and clinical sciences, and for people whose interest in psychosis stems from personal or family experience. We hope that the book series will help challenge excessively biological ways of conceptualising and treating psychosis through the dissemination of existing knowledge and ideas and by fostering new interdisciplinary dialogues and perspectives.

For more information about ISPS, email [email protected] or visit our website,  

For more information about the journal Psychosis visit

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
PSYCHOLOGY / Psychopathology / General
PSYCHOLOGY / Mental Health
PSYCHOLOGY / Movements / Jungian
PSYCHOLOGY / Psychotherapy / Group