So what exactly is family therapy?
Does my whole family have to be there?
What if I want to say something about my family I don’t want them to know?
I’m just a kid; no one will listen to me.
These may be just some of the questions and thoughts you have around family therapy.
I think one of the most important things for families to know, especially parents, is that you are part of the SOLUTION! You are coming for help because something is amiss in the family, and you are the ones who can make things better, by learning different ways of interacting with each other, and understanding each other better.
In family therapy, each person’s perspective and view of the problem is listened to, and understood…from the youngest to the oldest. Different combinations of the family may be seen at different times. There may be sessions where the family is seen all together, and there will likely be times where the parents are seen separately, and the siblings have their own session. Individual sessions with different members may occur as well. Everything is tailored to the needs of your family.
Family therapy is about relationships. The idea is to strengthen safe relationships in the family, and make sure that everyone is heard. I look at the patterns and cycles which occur between family members in an effort to make changes in interactions which have not been useful.
There are many issues for which a family may decide to come to therapy. These include: family conflict, parenting issues and raising children/adolescents, the discovery of a family secret, divorce, mental illness and/or substance use in the family, coping with the illness of a family member, coping with the loss and associated grief of a member of the family, parent/child relationships (including adult children and parents), and so many other possible reasons.
I am happy to talk to you about whether or not family therapy would be useful for your family, and answer any questions you might have.