The uses of emotion maps in research and clinical practice with families and couples: Methodological innovation and critical inquiry

Singh, Reenee and Gabb, Jacqui (2015) The uses of emotion maps in research and clinical practice with families and couples: Methodological innovation and critical inquiry. Family Process, 54 (1). pp. 185-197. ISSN Online ISSN: 1545-5300 Full text available

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Abstract/Book Review

We explore how “emotion maps” can be productively used in clinical assessment and clinical practice with families and couples. This graphic participatory method was developed in sociological studies to examine everyday family relationships. Emotion maps enable us to effectively “see” the dynamic experience and emotional repertoires of family life. Through the use of a case example, in this article we illustrate how emotion maps can add to the systemic clinicians’ repertoire of visual methods. For clinicians working with families, couples, and young people, the importance of gaining insight into how lives are lived, at home, cannot be understated. Producing emotion maps can encourage critical personal reflection and expedite change in family practice. Hot spots in the household become visualized, facilitating dialogue on prevailing issues and how these events may be perceived differently by different family members. As emotion maps are not reliant on literacy or language skills they can be equally completed by parents and children alike, enabling children's perspective to be heard. Emotion maps can be used as assessment tools, to demonstrate the process of change within families. Furthermore, emotion maps can be extended to use through technology and hence are well suited particularly to working with young people. We end the article with a wider discussion of the place of emotions and emotion maps within systemic psychotherapy.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Article first published online: 5 Aug 2014. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Uncontrolled Keywords: Emotion Maps, Family Relationships, Visual Methods, Family Systemic Psychotherapy, Clinical Practice
Subjects: Couple & Family Therapies > Couple/Marital Therapy
Couple & Family Therapies > Family Therapy - General
Department/People: Children, Young Adult and Family Services
Depositing User: Ms Linda Dolben
Date Deposited: 23 Jun 2015 14:22
Last Modified: 09 Feb 2016 10:28
URI: http://repository.tavistockandportman.ac.uk/id/eprint/1007

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