Family life education forum and responses

Forum Question (please read carefully)

Please address the following multiple questions in your initial posting this week. Family life educators need to consider issues related theory, research, practice and context! Select one of the theories below based on the first letter of your last name.****the first letter of my last name is H**** Conduct research on your theory and create a Storybird to creatively explain the key principles, concepts, meanings and example of your theory. WWW.STORYBIRD.COM . Also address, why this theory is an important element in Family Life Education and  how it is used by today’s CFLEs.

Your Storybird will generate a unique url (link to the storybird).  

Once you create your profile using the classroom password, included in another post in this Week’s Forum, you can “create a url connection” in your settings. 

In the body of your posted response, provide the url and given a brief overview of your sotrybird (3-5 sentences), then end with a question to the class that they can answer after viewing your storybird.

If this is not working, please let me know!

Family Systems Theory   (A-D)

Human Ecology Theory  (E-G)

Exchange Theory  (H-K)

Family Development Theory   (L-N)

Social Learning Theory    (O-R)

General Sexual Development Theory  (S-U)

Moral Development Theory   (V-Z)


 FORUM REQUIREMENTS – Please note initial post requirements are unique to this assignment

300 Level Forum Grading Rubric


Possible points

Student points

Met initial post deadline (Wednesday)



Storybird is creative



Storybird addresses selected theory



Brief summary and question on Storyboard is provided






First response to classmate posted by Sunday



First response is at least 150 words



First response employs at least 1 citation; can be the text






Second response to classmate posted by Sunday



Second response is at least 150 words



Second response employs at least 1 citation, can be the text 










first response:

New! Week 2



Last Edited By Aylee Briones on Aug 9, 2016 2:38 PM 

Last Edited By Aylee Briones on Aug 8, 2016 4:45 AM

See attachment for my Storybird… I hope you can all view it.


Characteristics of Family Systems Theory:

The family systems theory was introduced by Dr. Murray Bowenin in the late 1960s. Family systems theory is a human behavior theory that views the family as an emotional unit. This theory, proposes that people cannot be understood in isolation from one another, but rather as part of their family (Darling, Cassidy & Powell, 2014).  Members of a family system are interconnected with each other’s. This means that when there is a change in the emotional functioning of one of its members, it also changes the emotional functioning of the others members of the family. In other words, what affect one member of the family unit affects the rest too. 

A family is viewed as a social system where each member has a role to play and rules to respect.  Each member of the system is expected to communicate and respond to the other members in a specific way according to their role they have in their family system. Family systems also have subsystems, such as one parent and one child subsystem, the marital subsystem, sibling subsystems, etc. 

Concept of Family Systems Theory:

According to Darling, Cassidy & Powell (2014), “The family system is maintained by a boundary that can be perceived as occurring on a continuum ranging from open (allowing elements outside the family to influence it) to closed (becoming self-contained and isolating the family from its environment). Nevertheless, no family is entirely open or entirely closed (Darling, Cassidy & Powell, 2014).  The eight major interlocking concepts of the family systems theory are:

  1. Triangles
  2. Differentiation of self
  3. Nuclear Family Emotional System
  4. Family Projection Process
  5. Multigenerational Transmission Process
  6. Emotional Cutoff
  7. Sibling Position
  8. Societal Emotional Process 

The key concept of this theory is differentiation of self and emotional fusion. This concept is about the capacity of a person to distinguish her/himself from his family on both personal and intellectual level (Haefner, 2014).

Key Principles of Family Systems Theory:

The two key elements of family systems theory are structural characteristics and process characteristics. Structural characteristics involves boundaries, subsystems and hierarchies. Process characteristics consist in establishing boundaries, connectedness, separateness, messages, rules and more (Darling, Cassidy & Powell, 2014).  

An example of Family Systems Theory is Triangulation.

For example, I have a very close friend whose dad died on a car accident two years ago. After his death, my friend had completely moved into the role of peacemaker. She had mediated the tension between her mother and her older brother since them. My friends’ brother was driving the car the day of the accident. Even it was a terrible accident, he feels that she blames him for what happened. This ongoing triangle is helping detour some of the tension that has been created between mother and son in the family. Triangulation can get complicated if the third party’s involvement is distracting the other two persons from resolving their relationship deadlock.

Why this theory is an important element in Family Life Education and how it is used by today’s CFLEs:

Family Systems Theory is an important element of FLE because it helps us understand the factors that influence individual and family behaviors. It also provides us with insight about what are the most common problems within the family system. Furthermore, family systems theory looks at the reasons behind the changes or problems within the family system, and focuses on how to overcome or deal with them. 

Family System Theory is used by many family therapists today. Unlikely other therapies, family system theory encourage individuals to think of problems (depression, marital conflict, acting out teenagers, addictions etc.) in terms of family system. This procedure, encourage individuals to   stop blaming others and in the direction of individual responsibility. 

Questions to the class:

Is a family systems framework mostly applicable to seeing whole families? Don’t other frameworks apply better to individuals?

What areas or conditions can family systems therapy help with?

What are some limitations and concerns? from this approach?

How Can Family Systems Therapy Help? This approach may be helpful in addressing conditions such as:


Darling, C. A., Cassidy, D., & Powell, L. (2014). Family Life Education. Working with Families across the Lifespan. 3rd ed. Waveland Press, Inc.

Haefner, J. (2014). An Application of Bowen Family Systems Theory. Issues In Mental Health Nursing35(11), 835-841. doi:10.3109/01612840.2014.921257


Second response:

New! General Sexual Development Theory



I did the storybird but do not know how to post it so until then…

General Sexual Development Theory’s purpose states that experiencing one’s sexuality is appropriate at every age and stage of life and that sexual learning can enhance healthy, sexual positive attitudes (Cassidy, 2007). Positive attitudes are attitudes that promote experiences that are non-coercive, no risk are taken, no one getting exploited, and there is mutually pleasure between the two. Negative attitudes involve manipulations, fear and denial of a partner. This can later result in years of lack of pleasure with sex. 

General Sexual Development Theory Concepts:

1. Begin sexual education at birth.

2. Promote the development of a healthy self-concept.

3. Acknowledge a wide range of values and experiences. 

4. Talk honestly and openly about sexual questions and issues.

5. Prepare for realistic long-term relationships.

6. Value the future: career achievements, personal fulfillment, and personal health.

7. Focus on shared responsibility: home, school, community, religious organizations.

8. Address the political implications of change.


General Sexual Development Theory Examples:

A positive example is if two people were together and save themselves for marriage then finally gave themselves to each other during the honeymoon. A negative example would be two people recorded themselves having sex. They broke up them one of them posted the recording or sent them to some people as some kind on revenge for them breaking up with them.

Stress the importance of providing more sexual education for neglected audiences like: young adults, parents, and older adults. Counseling should be provided to those who have sexual dysfunctions because of prior  


General Sexual Development Theory is an important element to family life education because it is important that that everyone, no matter the age learns about sex. I work with infants and this age they began to touch themselves while getting a diaper chance and at first I would gently move their hands away. After having a meeting with some coworkers, the trainers, and administration and the subject came up about the babies touching themselves the administration said we should let them touch themselves because they are exploring their bodies and basically should know what is there. 


Cassidy, D., Powell, L. (2007). Family Life Education: Working with Families across the Life Span, Second Edition

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