Annals of Indian Psychiatry

: 2018  |  Volume : 2  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 88--92

Family therapy in India

Anuradha Vishwas Sovani 
 Department of Psychology, SNDT Women's University, Mumbai, Maharashtra, India

Correspondence Address:
Anuradha Vishwas Sovani
“OM”, 31, Shreesh Society, LIC Cross Road, Off Eastern Express Highway, Thane (West) - 400 604, Maharahstra

Origins of family therapy are traced, acknowledging that this is in fact a group of therapeutic approaches. An overview of work done at major mental health centers in India is followed by an attempt at outlining key differences in Indian vis-a-vis Western approaches to family therapy, addressing some of the unique problems that are encountered in our country. Traditional systems of arranged marriage and a joint family, in vitro fertilization interventions and the family pressures to have a baby, the impact of work on family life and the onslaught of social media and family migrations across the globe are some of the issues outlined. Major approaches to family therapy are selected, and their key features are highlighted. Specifically, Minuchin's structural family therapy and Virginia Satir's conjoint family therapy are described. Touching very briefly on Milton Erickson's strategic family therapy, the article moves on to White and Epston's narrative family therapy; and each approach is described vis-a-vis its strengths when applied to an Indian family setup. The article ends on preventive, promotive, and rehabilitative approaches espoused by the author as also by many therapists in India. Behavioral family interventions by Sanders are outlined as is the positive parenting program and its Indian avatar in Palakshaala. Preventive approaches such as functional family therapy by Sexton and Alexander are described. Rehabilitative work with patients and caregivers is outlined, citing examples. The article ends by highlighting some recent changes in the social fabric that seem to be deeply affecting family structures.

How to cite this article:
Sovani AV. Family therapy in India.Ann Indian Psychiatry 2018;2:88-92

How to cite this URL:
Sovani AV. Family therapy in India. Ann Indian Psychiatry [serial online] 2018 [cited 2023 Jan 31 ];2:88-92
Available from:;year=2018;volume=2;issue=2;spage=88;epage=92;aulast=Sovani;type=0