EMDR and strategic family therapy


Strategic Family Therapy developed some 50 years ago by a handful of visionaries at MRI (Mental Research Institute) in Palo Alto, California. This is why sometimes it is known as the “Palo Alto Group”. The kind of therapy evolved at that time changed the therapy world radically. The major shift was that: • The theory was a theory of change. The emphasis was on change rather than to understand how and why problems exist. • The focus was relationships rather than the phenomena going on under the skin of an individual. This meant that the way the therapist approached the clients was Systemic or interactional. • Strategic map was large enough to allow the therapist work with almost any kind of problem, borrow and use different techniques that belong to other approaches without conflict and confusion. • At that time therapy meant globally 4-5 sessions a week for many years. This was reduced to an average of 7-10 sessions. So when a therapist learned one of the Family Therapies, he learned essentially how to do therapy briefly.

One of the approaches that Family and Marriage Therapists integrate efficiently into their practice is EMDR. Though EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) is relatively new in the therapy world, now it is credited by many professional and governmental organizations as either “treatment of choice” or a valid psychotherapy approach. Especially when trauma is particularly have a role in the formation of the problem, then EMDR is a “life saver” for the therapist.

In this workshop, the participants will learn: • The basic principles and techniques of EMDR and Strategic Family Therapy • Why and how change occurs • When EMDR is called upon for help • How interventions are designed and implemented.

The cases will be presented by live video recordings of sessions.






Emre Konuk
Hejan Epozdemir

Original Work Citation

Konuk, E. & Epozdemir, H. (2010, March). EMDR and strategic family therapy. Presentation at the XVIII World International Family Therapy (IFTA) Congress, Buenos Aires, Argentina



“EMDR and strategic family therapy,” Francine Shapiro Library, accessed September 24, 2021, https://emdria.omeka.net/items/show/20742.

Output Formats