2017 Annual Fall Conference

Register Now
Deadline: OCTOBER 20, 2017
Friday, October 27, 2017

Tension in the Family: Coaching the Chronically Distressed Family

Bowen’s research at the NIMH in the 1950s produced an initial cardinal finding—that the family functioned as an emotional unit or system. He and his team subsequently recognized the role of stress or anxiety in the behavior of the family unit. Increasing stress and anxiety in individuals, and in the family system, results in changes in behavior. Individuals become more tense—more sensitive, reactive and more cognitively challenged. Family units transmit stress and anxiety rapidly to all members. They become less flexible, less oriented to solving problems, display heightened criticism and blaming of one another, and more active patterns of conflict and withdrawal.

Bowen noted that individuals and family units can become chronically anxious or stressed, a condition he called chronic anxiety. Chronic anxiety produces chronic tension in people and in family units.

The clinical approach to the chronically tense individual and family unit has two main interconnected goals:

  1. To decrease tension in the unit
  2. To assist motivated individuals to reclaim abilities to self-regulate, to think clearly, decide and act without having to withdraw from the tense family unit

The goal of the conference day will be to describe clearly the processes of stress and tension within the family and the clinical approaches that can help the family unit regain competent functioning.

Daniel V. Papero, PH.D.

Dr. Papero lectures both nationally and internationally on Bowen theory and is on the faculty of the Bowen Center for the Study of the Family in Washington, D.C. He is the author of the book Bowen Family Systems Theory and co-editor of the recently published book, The Family Emotional System: An Integrative Concept for Theory, Science, and Practice (2015). His publications also include numerous book chapters and journal articles. He maintains a clinical and consultation practice in Washington.

Since 1991 Dr. Daniel Papero has been the guest lecturer at the Center for Family Consultation’s annual Fall Conference. Each year Dr. Papero lectures on a topic central to Bowen theory and its clinical application. In addition to his lectures, he presents videotaped clinical sessions which illustrate important challenges individuals and their families seek to resolve. The sessions illustrate both the clinical application of the theory as well as the effort of individuals to define self in the broader context of the family.


Date, Time & Location

Friday, October 27, 2017

8:30 am: Registration
9:00 am–4:30 pm: Conference Hours


The Great Hall
Episcopal Diocese of Chicago

65 E. Huron
Chicago, Illinois 60611

The conference location is just off of Chicago’s Magnificent Mile. A special conference parking rate for attendees will be available for those who park at Millenium Center Parking at 33 W. Ontario.


The registration deadline is October 20, 2017.

Registration Fees

Individual: $165
Full-time Student with valid ID: $95


Approved for 6 social worker, marriage and family therapist, psychologist and professional counselor education credits.

For More Information

Please email Robert Noone or call 224-567-2888.