Multi family groups in early psychosis care

Poster C13, Wednesday, October 10, 11:30 am - 1:00 pm, Essex Ballroom

jef Lisaerde1, Martine Lambrechts1, Liesbeth Decoster1, Hella Demunter1, Lut De Rijdt1, Ludi Van Bouwel1; 1UPC KULEUVEN

Background: There is a rich history of multi-family groups (MFG) in the care for psychosis. We explore how the MFG of our in- and outpatient early psychosis care program is related to this tradition, and the benefits of the use of MFG in early psychosis care will be discussed. Method: A qualitative research based on (1) Interviews of participating family members conducted by an independent researcher (2) Observations of the conducting therapists and (3) Research of the existing literature concerning MFG in psychosis care (Mc Farlane, Asen, Badaracco). Results: Meaningful particularities are found in the characteristics of our group, regarding composition, structure and position of the therapist. The interviews reveal that parents experience the group as very supportive. The open character of the group results in sharing many lived experiences, positively welcomed by the participants, but slowing down the possibility to work in depth on certain themes. As therapists we experience difficulties in involving psychotic adolescents in the group. Discussion: A psychotic crisis is an invitation to understand the interindepency relations in the family and how the unbearable suffering, present in patient and parents, infects these relationships. During the recovery of a psychotic crisis, there are different needs in family and patient. Depending on the composition of the group, the therapeutic aim can shift from working in the interdependent relationships (family group) to ‘holding the holding environment’ (parent group). This study indicates that a heterogenic MFG is a specific and complementary tool in the care of early psychosis.

Topic Area: Psychosocial Interventions

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