Family therapy is a type of therapy that focuses on helping families communicate more effectively and resolve conflicts within the family system. The goal is to improve boundaries between family members and create healthier family dynamics. It is also often helpful for families dealing with a loss, mental illness or addiction of a family member, or other stressors.
What is family therapy?
Family therapy is a type of psychotherapy that involves a family unit working with a mental health clinician. During the process, a psychologist will work with individuals in a family unit to help improve communication and resolve conflict. The beginning stages will focus on identifying the underlying problems that may be impacting the dynamics of the family. It is also important to identify who will be involved in the therapy process and assess each individual’s willingness to participate in the therapy process.
Who can family therapy services help?
Individuals and families dealing with various difficulties often seek out family therapy services. Some families may want to work on solidifying emotional connections with family members while some may want to address immediate conflict they may be facing. It is common for parents to seek it out to improve their relationship with their children or partners. The following are common reasons that bring families to family therapy:
- The loss of a loved often times impacts the whole family unit. Following a loss, a family may seek out grief counseling together to process their grief and develop effective coping mechanisms together.
- When a family member is having trouble coping with change, family members may participate in therapy to address these adjustment issues. Changes may include divorce, moving to a new city, or the birth of a baby. It is common for families to participate in therapy services when parents are separating or divorcing. Parents may often work on developing a plan to address their children’s needs, as well as develop effective co-parenting skills to improve the consistency in both homes.
- Families may also seek out therapy services when there is a family member struggling with addiction or a mental health diagnosis. Psychologists can help families cope with an individual’s diagnosis and learn how to help that individual in treatment. Therapy often used in conjunction to individual treatment of mental health or substance abuse difficulties.
- Sibling rivalry is also a common presenting issue. Therapy services help siblings identify the problems within their relationship and the psychologist will help them address and resolve these issues more effectively. Parents may also be asked to participate in sessions in order to make environmental changes within the home or use behavior management techniques to address any behavioral problems that may be taking place in the home.
The examples listed above are common reasons individuals and families may seek therapy services. However, the services can be useful in other situations that may be causing disruptions in the family unit. If you are interested in learning more about therapy and the benefits of participating in family therapy, please contact Miami Psychology Group. Licensed psychologists are available to discuss the process of beginning therapy services with you and your family members.