I apprenticed close up with David Epston and Michael White for the majority of my therapeutic life. They seemed to believed in my abilities, took me under their wing, taught me the craft, let me live in their homes, patiently answered all of my questions and – showed me the beauty of their narrative therapy practice. Their art.
David and Michael turned me on to the relational wonder of post-structuralism, relational language and power relations. They mentored me on the idea that narrative therapy was a hard studied craft of appreciation, counter-story, relative influnece questions, improvisation, rights of passage and anti-individualism. After completing my PhD dissertation on the history and politic of their narrative therapy questions, Michael (along with Cheryl White) planned out the opening of the Vancouver School for Narrative Therapy in the Spring of 1992 (one night in 1991 – on the back of an Italian restaurant placemat).
My hope is that all of you will one day discover the art and magic of narrative practice. You’ll definitely need a guide on the journey because learning the craft of narrative therapy interviewing is often exasperating – since the structure and theory behind this therapeutic discourse is not based in what is generally taught in schools of psychology, social work, child care and psychiatry.
My teaching takes you on an intellectual stroll through the history of narrative therapy ideas by showing you live session tapes demonstrating everything I’ve learned from thousands and thousands of narrative practice conversations. We’ll take our time, have fun, stumble forward and uncover the beautiful relational mysteries. Eventually you’ll re-discover a confident ethical practice to better serve all the many different relationships we encounter in our daily practice of therapy.
I hold an MSW as well as an MSc and PhD in couple and family therapy. I’ve received a few fancy international therapy and teaching awards, published a stack of journal articles, written three books and teach narrative therapy workshops world wide. My preference is to do all this in relation to the politic and practice of a post-structurally informed narrative therapy.
I am a proud father of 18-year-old super cool twin daughters Hannah and Tessa and – a ‘retired’ member of Canada’s National Ultimate Frisbee Team. I have more than a passing interest in international politics, crime fiction, cooking, wine and my beloved hockey pool.
I look forward to catching up with all of you.