Family Systems in Regulation of Physiological Reactivity

Victoria Harrison, MA, LMFT
The focus of Victoria Harrison’s research since 1980 has been on using Bowen theory to study the impact of reactivity in the family system on health and reproduction, both in producing symptoms and in providing stability for functioning.

This broad direction includes investigating the research literature from many fields that study emotional systems and the regulation of reproduction by reactivity to the natural environment and to relationships along human phylogenetic history. This includes research from reproductive medicine, endocrinology, biology, neuroscience; population research, social psychology and child development that looks at how relationships govern individual physiology, behavior, and relationships patterns; research in neuroscience and biology on the evolution of the human capacity for differentiation of self.

Family Systems in Regulation of Physiological Reactivity and Anxiety

(1) A broad review of research as a context for the contributions of this study to the field
(2) Continued analysis of measures of physiological reactivity (EDR, EMG, and DST) for three triangles in this family of five to identify patterns
(3) indicating physiological fusion and more independent functioning.
(4) Comparison of physiological reactivity in families with fewer health and mental health

Observations of Change Project: Year Two

Volunteers from the Bowen Center Postgraduate Program document physiological measures and salivary cortisol, along with facts about contact with family members, symptoms, and work on differentiation of self.