chapter  3
23 Pages

Family Art Therapy with Single-Parent Families

This chapter explores the problems and the art therapy treatment of singleparent families. In particular, I will focus on the use of the art process to impact the generational boundaries within these families, since they are particularly vulnerable to weakened boundaries. These boundaries are the limits between the parent and the children that define the roles and expectations of each generation. The role of a parent is usually seen as an executive function, one of making decisions and rules for the family and maintaining them. Parents also are responsible for providing safe and nurturing homes for the children in which to grow. In single-parent families, the children are suffering from the loss of one parent, as well as, very often, the loss of their former socioeconomic status. The single parent's responsibilities more than double, which may lead to a weakening of the remaining executive system and, in turn, to a breakdown in family organization.