On Being “Strengths Based”

Re-blogging this because it’s so refreshingly supportive of children and families, and so clear about the over-pathologizing in which we, as a society, engage. A really good read.

Visible Child

3 kids musclesWhen I describe my work, I proudly say that my perspective is “Strengths Based.”  Recently, some people have asked what that means (Oh.  Good point).

Every one of us, regardless of the type of work we do, carry biases and values.  If someone tells you they have none, run, do not walk, in the opposite direction.  The important thing, as ever, is integrity–being willing to name and own our bias, our slant, the beliefs and values that we bring to our work.  These are mine: in my work with children and families, I look for and work with strengths.  I have little to no interest in deficit.  I understand and respect that there are people–many people–who see the utility in diagnosis and figuring out “what’s wrong”–it’s just not my kuleana (just have never found an equivalent word in English.)

Like everything else, like every collection of words, “strengths based”

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About armsakimbobook

I'm a mother, a lawyer, a feminist, a writer, a potter, and an inveterate and unapologetic New Yorker. My book, Arms Akimbo: A Journey of Healing, tells of my journey of healing over a number of years, learning to live a full life after I was molested by my father at a very young age. I live in Maynard, MA, with my wife and and our two moose-cats, Samson and Hercules. My daughter used to live with me part-time, but she's all grown up now and in her junior year of college, which I can't quite fathom, since she was born about five minutes ago...
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