Counseling and therapy is something that has grown in popularity in recent years, mainly because more and more people are beginning to understand its usefulness as well as a reduction in the stigma associated with seeking emotional health support.
There are those who are unclear about the advantages of family therapy. We’re going to skim over different types of family therapy as well as when it may be needed in this blog, to provide more clarity to the curious reader!
Who Needs It?
Family therapy can be sought by anyone who feels it is needed. That being said, there are some situations where the same comes highly recommended. These may include a breakdown in communication at home, disproportionate emotional reactions, loss of a family member that has triggered prolonged grief and abuse among others.
What Good Is It?
For starters, family therapy provides a safe space for all members to express, discuss and negotiate their respective grievances while being moderated by a trained professional.
This gives room for families with help from their counselor(s), to reset counterproductive communication dynamics, to develop a deeper sense of understanding and care for each other, to communicate in a healthy fashion and to deepen the bond between each other.
Invariably it helps reduce stress factors, trust issues, unprocessed grief and trauma related problems and creates a space for families to heal and possibly flourish.
Many family therapists take to an integrative approach when working with clients, which means, they will endeavor to tap in to a number of theories and apply to their clients—what, according to their trained discretion, would serve the family best keeping in mind its particular brand of distress.
This being said, there are a few root theories and therapy models that family therapists may draw on. Some of the main models include:
Structural Therapy: Where the therapist after observing the family dynamic and other contributing factors endeavors to assist the family in doing away with old and redundant ways of processing and interacting replacing them with more productive ones.
CBT: Which is almost a rewiring (of the mind) of sorts, which is done by identifying trigger situations and behaviors that follow in an attempt to modify behaviors which are counterproductive, but have been learned over a long period of time.
Systemic Therapy: Where systemic interactions of all family members are taken into account after which the therapist endeavors to understand them in their social context, while assisting the family to make the needed changes
Narrative Therapy: Is where the focus is on individual members and their perceptions of the situation as well as delving into what they can personally do to make it better.
Lots more where that came from: Though these are just a few ways and methods that a family therapist might look to, there are a number of other philosophies and models that can be potentially integrated.
Finding the right fit
The level of skill of the counselor or therapist is also something crucial to personal healing. Make sure you find a reliable and qualified practitioner and look into any relevant information before choosing where and how to proceed!
Azizeh E. Rezaiyan provides couples therapy to facilitate discourse and conflict resolution between partners.
With an M.A. in Marriage and Family Therapy and being a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT), she draws upon a deep understanding of family dynamics as well a number of tools and methods with which to work with the same.