Families living with acquired brain injury: A multiple family group experience Academic Article uri icon


  • Although the use of multifamily group work is well established within the mental health field, it remains an underutilised method of treatment for families affected by brain injury. This paper reports on a pilot project exploring multifamily group work with families with a parent with an acquired brain injury. Six families met for a total of 12 sessions over a period of 6 months, with session themes informed by the Bouverie Family tasks model of adaptation post-ABI. The project was evaluated using qualitative and quantitative research methods, with pre, post group and 3 month follow up measures of individual, couple and family functioning. Parents reported generally reduced levels of personal distress at follow up but continuing high levels of marital and family dysfunction. Children were generally reported to be well functioning, although parents were particularly concerned about the impact of family disruption and violence on their children. Families were unequivocally positive about their participation in the group with benefits including reduced feelings of shame and isolation, provision of mutual support, increased understanding of brain injury, sharing of difficult experiences and movement from blame to compassion. Further research is warranted on the specific applications of multifamily group work with acquired brain injury.

publication date

  • March 27, 2007