In memory of James L. Framo: A personal note 1922-2001
作者: by Woolley, Scott R / 4808次阅读 时间: 2009年8月23日
来源: Journal of Marital and Family Therapy, Jan 2002 标签: note memory James Framo personal
www.psychspace.com心理学空间网I first met James L. Framo, PhD, when I interviewed for a faculty position at United States International University (now Alliant International University). Jim was a Distinguished Professor of Marriage and Family Therapy (MFT), and I was a very green almost-PhD. I was awed and nervous to interview with this family therapy founder. How would he treat me, given that I was such a new professor wannabe? Would he quiz me on his work? I did not know, but I was not taking chances and carefully read up on his approach. In the interview, there were no quizzes, just warmth and humanity. The interest, respect, and kindness he showed me that day have always stayed with me. Later I came to understand that his kind, supportive manner was the same treatment he would always give me, and the way he treated hundreds of new professionals and students over the course of his career.

When I got the position and moved to San Diego, Jim would regularly come by my office with a smile and a warm "Hello, my friend, how are you?" followed with an invitation to stop by his office for a "chat." In those chats he was genuinely interested in learning about my background, my family, and my views on the field. I, of course, was very interested in his views, and he willingly shared.

One of his favorite topics was how the field got started and how it has evolved. Jim had a wall of pictures in his office of early family therapy pioneers, and we would talk about who they were and how they contributed to the field. He particularly liked to point to a fading picture of the group that founded the American Family Therapy Academy (AFTA), and to talk about the hopes and dreams and plans of those who made AFTA a reality. Although by the time I knew him, he was frustrated by the changing direction of AFTA, he clearly had great pleasure in recalling his role in helping to found the organization and his service as its second president.

Another historical topic that seemed to bring him great pleasure was the 1967 family therapy research conference that he chaired where Bowen gave his famous "anonymous" talk (1972). Recalling that conference led to fascinating conversations about some of his important early works such as My Families, My Family (1968), and Symptoms from a Family Transaction Viewpoint (1970), classics in the field. When he talked about developing his family of origin approach, true to his honesty and personal openness, he told me about how he had set up a time with his own father to work out old issues, and then got the call that his father had died before the appointed visit. He would say, "So it is no wonder why I have spent my career helping families get together and resolve old issues while people are still alive."

Jim loved to talk about politics, movies (he was an avid movie buff), and, toward the end of his life, World War II. He served in the army, fought his way up the coast of Italy, and was one of the first U.S. solders to go into Rome. Jim was in combat for over 400 days in the Italian campaign and was finally wounded a few weeks before the end of the war in Italy. He would often say, "When I retire, I want to read books about WWII." At the time of his passing, he had read many of those books and was working on his own war memoir. He entitled it "The Madness of War." He was proud to have helped defend the U.S. and defeat fascism, but was also very honest about the evils and horrors of war.

As his health started failing, it became increasingly difficult for him to come to the university to teach. Because of his health, he considered not teaching his final course on Intergenerational Family Therapy, but when he learned that he had a group of dedicated students who were looking forward to him teaching, he agreed to coteach the course with his wife, Felise Levine, and hold it in the living room of their home. From time to time, I checked in with the students that quarter to see how it was going. They reported being humbled to be in their home, thrilled about having Dr. Framo teach them, and excited about the passionate way in which they taught and the power of his approach.

The last time I talked with Jim was less than 2 weeks before his death. I told him about our program's new Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy Education accreditation, and he was delighted and full of compliments and praise. I invited him to speak at an international family therapy conference, and he thanked me for the invitation, but said his health was not good and he was enjoying being retired too much. However, he then said, "But perhaps I could help out by attending and being on an informal panel or something." He was deeply committed to seeing MFT succeed as a field, and he wanted to contribute in any way he could. He ended the conversation by inviting me to his home for another chat about WWII and the field of MFT.www.psychspace.com心理学空间网
TAG: note memory James Framo personal
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