This type of text is inspirational for other music therapy clinicians and students interested in the growing area The book is an important contribution to music therapy literature and to the creation of a well established field of working with families. Other readers will also benefit from witnessing how music can work its way into such a range of different settings and bring challenge. This is what music therapy is all about. Related Subjects. My Cart. You have no items in your shopping cart.
Follow us. Out of stock. About our Ebooks. Add to cart. Throughout the therapeutic process, a range of creative methods were used to support them to process their experiences, including song-sharing, using picture cards to represent their experiences, drawing their past and present selves, song writing, and musical improvisation to explore their feelings and coping strategies.
Personal Reflections on our Practice and Research
After discussing possibilities for what they could write about, they decided that they wanted to write a song about looking towards a better and bright future, and moving on from the past. The family participated in a typical songwriting process of brainstorming ideas, developing song lyrics, creating a melody and recording the song, which occurred over several sessions. The process of writing the song provided a way for them to work together, to negotiate ideas and to ensure that all voices were represented in the song lyrics. In order to extend the creative process of writing the song, the family also created a CD cover using artwork they had created within the sessions that was based on the theme of the song.
As the family were committed to the creative process they requested to continue to work on it at home between the sessions, which provided further opportunities for mastery and ownership. Due to the family having additional medical and health needs, they were also linked in to a community health nurse based at the organisation.
This referral supported them linking into health and disability services in the community. While the family were in the process of practicing and recording their song, they decided to invite the nurse into the room so that they could share the song they had written.
Impact of music therapy to promote positive parenting and child development.
Additionally, after receiving the recording of the song on a CD, the family reported that they had been listening to the song together at home and that they had shared it with some extended family members who had come to visit. Following this, the family reported feelings of pride about what they had achieved together, feeling more connected and being positive about a better and brighter future.
The case story we have described is one example of how music therapy can rebuild and foster family relationships disrupted due to family violence. In the case of Olivia and her children, songwriting provided a creative way for the family to develop a new narrative about their experiences, while reflecting upon their challenges, resources and hopes. This concept is comparable to music therapy research that describes how songwriting helps people to express what is important to them at challenging times in their lives.
The process of engaging Olivia and her children in a family-centred therapeutic process provided an opportunity to connect and collaborate in a way that would not have been possible if they had each received only individual therapeutic support. Humphreys, Thiara, and Skamballis have critiqued traditional organisational structures that often perpetuate the fracturing of relationships by offering separate services for children, women, and men.
While in some instances it is necessary for mothers and children to be offered separate therapeutic spaces to process their individual experiences and for mothers to increase their capacity to respond in an attuned way to their child, we must also consider the times when it is appropriate for children and mothers to come together for therapy. Perry and Dobson have discussed how trauma and subsequent responses to it need to be understood through the context of human relationships. Therefore, reflecting upon and fostering support provided by family members needs to be a fundamental part of therapeutic work with children.
Aceves and Cookson have described how positive relationships with a caregiver can help a child to develop a positive identity and to foster healthy coping strategies.
Despite the research that emphasises the importance of family support, some mothers may require support to ensure that they are able to be emotionally available and able to respond in a appropriate way to their child following their experiences of trauma Groves et al. By providing a space for mothers to practice these skills in a family-centred therapeutic process, positive parent-child relationships are fostered and children have a greater access to emotional and practical support from the important people in their lives. Children have a right to participate in the process of solving problems that they and their families face, as well as the right to be carefully considered as equal members of their families Lund et al.
The inclusion of all non-violent family members allows therapists to observe how each family member contributes to the challenges and growth of the family. Aceves, M. Violent victimization, aggression, and parent adolescent relations: Quality parenting as a buffer for violently victimized youth. Australian Bureau of Statistics. Personal safety, Australia, Canberra, ACT: Author. Austin, D.
Music Therapy Works / How We Work / Parents and Carers
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Music therapy may bring troubled families together
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- Whose Disease?: Whose Disease? (Whose Disease?).
- Music Therapy with Children and their Families?
- Music therapy in child welfare.
Humphreys, C. Readiness to change: Mother-child relationship and domestic violence intervention.
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