Encyclopedia of Couple and Family Therapy

2019 Edition
| Editors: Jay L. Lebow, Anthony L. Chambers, Douglas C. Breunlin

Carter, Betty

  • Melinda MacDonaldEmail author
  • M. L. Parker
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-49425-8_691


Betty Carter

Elizabeth A. (Golden) “Betty” Carter (1929–2012)


Betty Carter, MSW, was originally trained as a Bowenian Family Therapist and became well known for her work on the expanded family life cycle. In collaboration with Monica McGoldrick, Carter integrated the concepts of individual human development and the traditional family life cycle to develop an expanded perspective of family development. In addition to the expanded family life cycle, Carter strongly influenced the field of marriage and family therapy by questioning the family systems theory tenets of traditional gender roles, power dynamics, and the narrow view of the female perspective. Carter was also a cofounder of the Women’s Project in Family Therapy, which aimed to amplify the female voice within the field of family therapy.


Carter received her undergraduate degree from St. John’s College, NY, and went on to earn her Master of Social Work degree from Hunter College, NY. Carter then met Peggy...

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  1. Carter, B., & McGoldrick, M. (1981). The family life cycle: A framework for family therapy. New York: Gardner Press.Google Scholar
  2. Carter, B., & Peters, J. K. (1996). Love, honor and negotiate: Building partnerships that last a lifetime. New York: Pocket Books.Google Scholar
  3. McGoldrick, M. (2013). The multicultural family institute remembers Betty Carter (May 13, 1929–September 11, 2012). Journal of Marital and Family Therapy, 39(1), 2–4.  https://doi.org/10.1111/jmft.12009.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. Walters, M., Carter, B., Papp, P., & Silverstein, O. (1988). The invisible web: Gender patterns in family relationships. New York: The Guilford Press.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Marriage and Family Therapy ProgramUniversity of Saint JosephWest HartfordUSA

Section editors and affiliations

  • Rachel Diamond
    • 1
  1. 1.University of Saint JosephWest HarfordUSA