· first the husband and wife are usually very much a couple, their feeling for each other is strong and often very loving. Their marriage has already weathered many crises and can withstand explosive and tumultuous feelings and disappointments. They have a strong commitment to each other.
· they have the strength to look at issues which are affecting themselves and their children detrimentally and to stick with it often through to a successful recovery, despite what might look like a serious difficulties, highlighted during intensely painful, angry and joyful sessions.
· they usually take their responsibilities as parents very seriously and the family is a central theme in their lives. In this they can err on the side of expecting a great deal of themselves and of their children. Underlying this can be a constant feeling of having to over-compensate for doubts about being good parents...
· the parents come for help with some trust of the professional and with some hope that good will come of their efforts to discuss their own difficulties. They are chosen parents, in a sense.