Family Therapy and Practice: “The things that make a difference”

A systemic theoretical framework lies behind the practice of family therapy. Understanding that theory both in its original normative/causative model and the later, more useful, ‘things get in a mess’/circular model is cru- cial for making a systemic formulation which in turn informs the practice of therapy itself. The workshop will not be confined to the use of family therapy with eating disorders and will be of benefit to practitioners in a wide range of mental health contexts.

There are many ways a systemic understanding and formulation are helpful. It not only offers various ways to proceed with a family but also helps with individual psychotherapy and with different contexts and with many presenting issues.

Day One- Introduction to Systemic thinking and practice.

Day one offers an overview of the theoretical underpinnings and the practices to which they give rise. There will be an opportunity to talk about this connection between theory and practice and to watch it in action.

Day two

The second day of the workshop looks back at the development of family therapy in search of those most useful or classic ideas and practices such as coherence, circularity and conversation which experience has sieved out. This is both personal and universal. Building on the wide survey of day one, day two offers an explanation of and a chance to practice the bits of family therapy which, from experience, seem indispensable…at least for now.

Participants can elect to attend either day one only or day two only (cost $230), or both days (cost $400) de- pending on their training and experience.

Date: Thursday 15th and Friday 16th August 2019 at Perth Children’s Hospital, QEII Medical Centre, Nedlands.

Bookings essential. For bookings go to:

As a Clinical psychologist my main interest has been, and continues to be, in the area of psychotherapy. Most models of psychotherapy have been of interest to me and they all continue to inform my prac- tice. I adopt both an individual (intra-psychic) and an inter-personal (relational) frame for all of my work.

It is fifty years since Watzlawick et. al. wrote Pragmatics of Human Communication: A Study of Interactional Patterns, Pathologies and Paradoxes. This year will mark the fortieth annual Australian Family Therapy Conference. I was an early reader of Watzlawick’s book and attender at the annual conference. The question is:  “How has the  field and the practitioner refined family therapy over these years?”

Journal articles by Andrew Relph:

Relph, A. (2008). Exploring: An Essay. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Family Therapy, 29(4), 211-215.

Relph, A., & Lohyn, M. (2001). Invitation to the Barbecue: Political  Correctness, Social Criticism and Family Therapy. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Family Therapy, 22(1), 29-33.

Relph, A. (1998). Psychotherapy, Architecture and the Postmodern Attitude. An Essay. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Family Therapy, 19(3), 135-146.

Relph, A. (1991). Family Therapy and the Theory of Logical Types. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Family Therapy, 12(1), 1-7. Relph, A. (1987). A Jung#Bateson Correspondence. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Family Therapy, 8(1), 1-5.

Relph, A. (1985). The Last Time: A Metaphor For Leaving*. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Family Therapy, 6(3), 123-127.