This session will introduce a model of marriage and family therapy derived from an integration of the Enneagram and Attachment Theory. An infant develops an attention style (personality) in order to maintain an attachment bond with its caregiver. In Enneagram-Based Marriage and Family Therapy the nine defense mechanisms are understood to be attachment-maintaining mechanisms. While an essential part of early development, in adult life attachmentmaintaining mechanisms interfere with a family’s ability to experience coherence and connection. A panel of the nine types will be interviewed to explore the ways that attachment maintaining mechanisms influence close relationships.

Kristin Arthur is a certified Enneagram teacher (Association of Enneagram Teachers in the Narrative Tradition) and she uses the Enneagram in her work as a doctoral student in Marriage and Family Therapy at Virginia Tech University. Contact information: or.

Kristin Arthur


2004 IEA Global Conference

Arlington, Virginia, USA