A genogram is created with simple symbols representing the gender, with various lines to illustrate relationships, physical and physiological attributes of members in a family. These symbols carry comprehensive meanings in multiple aspects, such as health status, family relationships, emotional relationships, and medical issues.
Basic genogram symbols carry necessary information of a person: gender, birth, and age, immigration, sexual orientation and pregnancy situation, etc. Genogram symbols usually display the date of birth (and date of death if applicable) above the box, and the name of the individual underneath. The inside of the symbol will hold the person's current age or various codes for genetic disease or user-defined properties: abortions, still-births, SIDS, cohabitation, etc.
Is a family relationship a genogram similar to a family tree? The answer is NO. A family relationship genogram conveys much more information and is way more complicated than a family tree. Referring to family relationships, you can illustrate whether a couple is married, engaged, common-law, divorced, or separated with simple color-coded lines and symbols.
Emotional relationship symbols are used to describe the emotional bond between any two individuals in the genogram. For example, you can tell whether a couple is in love or not by checking the connecting lines' colors. Usually, green means a couple is in a harmonious relationship, while red implicates the conflicts between them. Be careful; if you happen to see the blue lines in the diagram, there are domestic abuses in this family.
Medical genogram symbols play the most crucial role in genograms. Medical genograms provide a quick and scientific context that indicates the possibility of an individual's health risks. Here I divide medical genogram symbols into two parts according to their appearance - colored or monochrome.
1. Monochrome Medical Genogram Symbols
By structuring the diseases and conditions in a family, a medical genogram can help you take precautions to avoid genetic diseases and illnesses if you are going to have a baby.
2. Colored Medical Genogram Symbols
The colored medical genogram symbols consist of all common genetic diseases, such as heart disease, diabetes, cancer, down syndrome, depression, and asthma, etc.
1. Emotional Relationship Genogram
It is a genogram example that displays an emotional relationship. We can presume that Michael and Ann are in a loving and harmonious relationship. William and Elisa are close friends, while Elisa's parents didn't get along well.
2. Medical Genogram
Here is a medical genogram diagram, which mainly talks about hemophilia. Hemophilia is a rare disorder in which your blood doesn't clot because it lacks sufficient blood-clotting proteins.
Firstly, an easy-to-use genogram software is recommended. EdrawMax contains all kinds of genogram symbols and genogram templates. You can create a genogram just in few steps. Check the following video to find the inspiration for creating a genogram!
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