We come into life in relationship. Usually with parents or caregivers. Some of us are related by blood and some are not. Either way, we grow up going through stages which sometime bring us into conflict with other’s in our family. Some family members live, socialize and bond together. Some do not. But either way, sometimes a change in behavior by one person in a family can result in stress and pain for another. Family therapy is a type of psychotherapy where family members can go to share these conflicts and reduce stress and find solutions to improve situations and relationships.
Family is defined an anyone who plays a long-term supportive role in one’s life. People come to family therapy, to work out issues with other family members.
Some examples of situations that families might seek family therapy would be:
- When someone in the family is struggling with an addiction and others in the family are being negatively affected by it.
- When children are having trouble adjusting to being part of a blended family because of parent re-marrying.
- Marital Conflicts
- When you feel a need to confront an elderly parent who you feel should not be driving or living alone anymore and the elderly parent disagrees.
- When your parent is dating or marries someone younger than you.
- When there is sexual abuse in the family and someone wants to come forward with the facts- perhaps to warn others.
- Unexpected or traumatic loss of a family member
- Infertility issues
- Dealing with a parent or child who is gay, has gender dysphoria or who is transgender.
- Marital Conflicts
- When family members are concerned about depression and anxiety in another family member.
- Domestic Violence
- Dealing with any family trauma
- When you feel a family member is being taken advantage of financially, and you want to confront them about it.
- When there is disagreement concerning financial inheritance, wills, and the family estate.
- When children are acting out because their parents are in process of a divorce.
The goal of family therapy is to improve the interactions of family members. The role of the therapist is to promote understanding, empathy and good communication. When this happens, helpful and satisfying resolutions can be achieved with respect for each other, strengthening family relationships.