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Family therapy, as defined by the Mayo Clinic is “a type of psychological counseling (psychotherapy) that can help family members improve communication and resolve conflicts.” Rather than blaming one member of the family for its problems, family therapy allows for the identifying and addressing of issues as a unit.

Family therapy approaches may include but are not limited to structural, strategic, intergenerational, experiential, and solution-focused. While some family therapists are associated with one of these models, others incorporate techniques from a variety of approaches in their practice. Through family therapy, a family therapist will analyze habits presented by their clients and use them to inform the treatment plan which will incorporate proven psychotherapeutic methods to solve and mend interpersonal relationships. A family treatment plan and the work that occurs in family therapy are entirely guided by the needs and therapeutic goals of the family unit. While each therapist has his or her own style, Healthline explains that a family treatment plan is often informed through information gathered in the following steps:

  • Initial intake: this session will allow all participating members the ability to offer their respective perspectives on what brought the family to therapy.
  • Assessment: the next sessions will entail the therapist gathering information on the intricacies of the family (e.g., family history, family roles, parenting, and discipline approaches, previously relied upon family coping skills, methods of communication, etc.).
  • Mapping the family structure: if the therapist is using a structural approach, one or more therapy sessions may be used to create a structural map to illustrate the boundaries and hierarchies of the family unit.
  • Treatment plan: Family therapists are often more interested in solving problems than in assigning blame for them. Working with a family therapist, participating family members will co-create a treatment plan that addresses the unique needs of the family unit.

During family counseling sessions, individuals in a family can interact with one another and the therapist in a controlled environment. To guide a family towards a healthy life, family therapists strive to improve family members’ communication, work together to resolve family problems, gain an understanding of and skills to navigate challenging family situations and cultivate a more cohesive and functional family dynamic. 

Further Information and Support

Navigating the challenges that arise from living with mental illness, struggling with substance abuse, and/ or addiction can not only be all-consuming but are often impossible to effectively handle without proper support. If you are concerned for yourself or a loved one regarding mental illness, substance abuse, and/ or addiction we recommend reaching out for help as soon as possible. Bear in mind that you do not have to be on this journey alone. At {Upwell Advisors}, we offer unique, customized concierge therapeutic services to provide our clients with unparalleled support throughout every step of the recovery process. 

Feel free to reach to contact us anytime via email at sean@upwelladvisors.com. We look forward to supporting you on your journey.

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