"The Rootless Are Ruthless." -Bertold Ulsamer (Veteran Constellations Trauma Therapist)

There is a relationship between being cut off from family, ancestry, and community and our experiences of anxiety, depression, anger, violence and virtually all forms of personal and interpersonal problems.

This quote focuses on the historical perspective that the worst atrocities are committed by people who are on many levels, rootless.

However, setting aside violence on a historical scale, the relationship still remains. There is a strong connection between how we relate to our roots and the mental health issues or disordered behavior we witness in our daily lives.

Our relationship to our roots can ground us in our strength, supporting us to be bigger, more, and more successful than the people we come from. Or it can leave us feeling unnurtured, isolated and like we're always missing something in our live.

When I work with clients, I help them explore their family system, ancestral system and the cultural systems they belong to. When we do this, it's not to point the finger at Mom, Dad, a religion, the boss, or the perpetrator. It's to learn how the client lives in relationship to these systems and individuals.

Do they feel they belonged in the system they came from? Do they feel like an outsider? Did these systems hurt them in some way? Does resentment remain? Do they feel safe? Historically, did they protect or control others?

These are the dynamics that have covert ways of continuing into our adult lives. It's less about what happened and more about how we carry it today.

Looking for these clues is what moves us closer to healing at the root level. I work this way because it means a session doesn't just address a symptom or two that the person is seeing at their job or with their significant other. Instead, we seek to create a deeper healing movement that addresses not only the visible symptoms, but provides a whole range of unexpected benefits that the person didn't realize were also entagled with the original 'problem.'

It's the difference between fixing a problem and healing from what nourished and supported the problem into being in the first place.

Nick Werber