Címke: Hellinger Therapy

Family Constellation, or Hellinger Therapy

Family Constellation, or Hellinger Therapy ,Personality Integration Therapy, Hellinger’s Method, Systemic Constellations or Systemic Family Constellations. Different names for the same, effective method.

In modern times when families falling apart is as common as feeling uncertainty whether our basic needs are going to be met, many can benefit from this method that has been proven to be effective time and time again. It has been developed by German missionary and psychotherapist Bert Hellinger.

Family Constellation is based on the realization that each member of every family (that includes the long forgotten, disinherited relatives as well) is deeply connected by an energetic, (morphogenetic) field.

The field is, from the point of view of the individual, a structure that works by influencing the subconscious, a source of power, family history, the call of the ancestors.

The person coming for help is deeply affected by and is under the influence of his/her ancestors, his descendants as well as his past and present relationships. Whenever a person is about to take any action, this field remembers. It may try to recreate an event that happened before in the family or may try to use an old strategy again.

It is the cause of the repeating cycles of similar fate, generation after generation in each family that we see so very often.

Bert Hellinger have observed that if the field is affected by a benevolent outside influence for example by Family Constellation Therapy, the cycles can stop and the individual is able to start a new chapter in his life. The harmonization begins by embracing the past with love and respect, being open to a new kind of future and accepting the challenges in the present moment.

So what exactly happens during Family Constellation Therapy?

Well, it is usually a group event. There’s a random group of people that includes helpers, the therapist and of course the client himself. They only need to give a few generic pieces of information, they are specifically forbidden to tell long stories, detailed descriptions or tell the full story from their own point of view.

The basic questions are:

Molnár György és Iklódy Anna Sarolta dédszüleim

Who belongs to the family? Are there any stillborn, miscarried (that includes aborted) family members or ones that died way too young? Were either of the parents or grandparents married or engaged before or were they in a long, deep relationship? Where there any serious accidents or did any member of the family ever take another life? Were there any unusual circumstances regarding the client’s birth? These are all the informations the patient needs to give us.

This is the reason why the therapist refuses to have a consultation with the client beforehand and that’s why there are no lengthy questionnaires either.

The patient, upon being instructed by the therapist, can choose members of the group to represent members of his or her family. To be more precise, he can choose a representative for his mother, father, siblings, relationships, children and of course his own self. It really doesn’t matter who he chooses, preferably someone from the same gender as the person they are going to embody but it also works with the opposite gender if this is not possible. This is the first step of the process. Once he made his choices the patient sets up the characters in the field any way it feels right for him.

That’s all he has to do at the beginning, now it’s the helpers’ turn who can, unconsciously, sense a lot of the situation of the person they are representing.

That’s all he has to do at the beginning, now it’s the helpers’ turn who can, unconsciously, sense a lot of the situation of the person they are representing. They can show and feel their emotions and intentions. Often they leave their original positions and turn to a certain direction or change the way they gaze. Then, the therapist, who has bees trained to read these signs, starts to ask questions such as ‘How does the mother feel?’ And then suggests certain movements or phrases up until she finds a reassuring order. Only then she makes the patient change places with the person representing him up until that point and in most cases she makes him say a few simple but very powerful words, such as ‘Thank you’. Then they wait for a couple of minutes for the new order to integrate itself and that is the end of the session.

In what way can all this help us? No matter the circumstances of our current lives, we are meant to be in a community in our present and, as for the endless flow of time we continue the lives of our elders and we’re the ancestors of our descendants. We don’t have statues of our ancestors by the family fireplaces anymore but we no longer live in ancient times where this was common and appropriate. Family Constellation Therapy help as to make peace with family secrets, traumas and cyclically repeating patterns, to stop handing these down to the next generation but to be supported by a strong family behind us to help face the challenges of our present lives.

Exploring the causes of a child’s introverted behaviour and support with Hellinger Therapy

A young, sweet mother of three contacted me, asking for an online consultation due to his son’s unexplainably changed behavior. It begun by him starting fights at kindergarten then things at
home took a turn for the worst as well. The loving family was baffled by the outbursts of rage and crying fits and he caused his mum a lot of heartache by refusing any of her attempts to cuddle or show affection.


During the consultation we started to look for the root cause of this problem. We have found on the mothers side that 4-5 generations ago there lived a child to whom this boy was strongly connected
on the soul level. It’s almost as if he’s seen the world through that child’s eyes. His entire life experience was under the influence of this long lost family member.
This child, who lived a long time ago had a very challenging life as he was born with a disability. His parents, simple village folk, were ashamed and embarrassed by his condition and were unable
to accept it.

The mother was deeply saddened to see what kind of family history they had. She wanted to do something to heal the past. To continue, she said :


Dear beloved ancestor! I deeply regret that you have never received the love and care in your childhood that should have been your birthright. I keep you close to my heart. I welcome you withlove in the playground of my inner child.


During the consultation we went deeper into charting the generations. My client stood up to all the other participants in her thoughts first then said the appropriate words of release to each and every one of them.
My client was visibly relived so it was time to turn our attention to her relationship with her own son.
As soon as we tuned into the energy of the situation we felt as if there was a ‘glass door with a bad mother pattern’ on it. As if the little boy could only perceive her through this image thus was unable to connect to her or to anybody else.
So, during the consultation we have showed him (figuratively of course as during the online consultations we work with inner images) the other mother, the other child, the other fate.
So now he was able to differentiate between his own mum and the other, bad mother.

He could even say, on his behalf:


Beloved mother, I can see you now. And I can also see the other mother, who isn’t you. I am so sorry that she was the way she was and I am so happy that you are the way you are. I thank you for my life, my siblings, my father. I am grateful for your love. That other story has nothing to do with me. I belong to you, mum.


Finally, we said on behalf of the little boy to the ancient, hurt little child:


Dear ancestor! I can see you now. I can see your fate. I can see that you are you and I am me. I am deeply sorry for what you had to go through and I know that a great injustice has been done to you. But I cannot carry the burden of your fate as it is yours and yours only. Please, look down on
me with love even though I am growing up in a loving, caring family. I am going to play a lot and give and receive love from my parents and siblings, in your memory as well.


Two days after our session the young mother wrote to me saying that she cannot see any difference, if anything, the little one is even more tense than ever. I reassured her that this can happen sometimes and he needs even more love and patience than before. A bit over two weeks
later I have received another message where she wrote: My little boy have changed so much! He’s now cuddly, affectionate and so well behaved! Thank you so much!

You can see this article in Hungarian here.