Immediately, MJ began to apply BFST principles in her personal relationships and found that everything Bowen said would happen did happen, exactly as he described. So MJ began presenting the principles to her clients in her private practice, as well. There, too, those who gave the theory an honest try found it intuitive and empowering, although challenging. As Bowen predicted, when clients tried to change themselves in their relationships, they encountered resistance from within and without, but as they were able to push through their internal tension to remain true to themselves in the face of opposition, their relationships eventually absorbed the new way of being, elevating their dynamics to a more emotionally mature level of functioning.
After practicing BFST for several years, MJ decided she needed to take her personal healing up a notch by moving back across the country to the area where she had grown up (and from where she’d escaped 30 years before). When MJ gets something in her mind that she believes in, she pursues it wholeheartedly. For three years, she lived in close proximity to her remaining family members, conducting her own personal research project. She found that practicing BFST from 3000 miles away is much less challenging than practicing it in situ, but MJ looks back on this time with gratitude for how she and her family relationships changed during this time.