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rule/family rule

As defined by Jackson (1965b), rules are "relationship agreements" that "prescribe and limit the individuals' behaviors over a wide variety of content areas, organizing their interaction into a reasonably stable system". Because families interact in repetitious sequences, rules highlight redundancy in family patterns.

Definition extracted with permission from Simon, Fritz, et al, Family Process, Inc.: Language of Family Therapy: A Systemic Vocabulary and Source Book (Family Process Press Series)