Thanks to the numerous and much needed campaigns against social stigma, the word “therapy” doesn’t hold the same negative connotations that it once did for people. In fact, caring for your mental health is considered as just an imperative of an approach as caring for your physical wellbeing.
When it comes to therapy, there are different branches of it to explore. Some turn to it for grief counseling, while others seek help due to anxiety and stress. For some it is the answer to behavioral changes, for others it is a moment of self-reflection. These days, one can also even go online to places like Regain.us to get the help one needs.
Whatever the objective might be, it does help people in achieving their goals in all walks of life.
Even if the goals are to keep a family stay happy and healthy together.
What is Family Counseling?
As the name suggests, family counseling is targeted therapy that caters to issues which affect a family as a whole. Some of these issues include but are not limited to a family member’s addiction to substances; parents going through divorce; or a child/adolescent going through unruly behavior.
The conflicts and stressful situations that can result out of such an issue are often addressed through family counseling.
What Happens During Family Counseling?
In the typical model of therapy, individuals have to attend separate sessions to address their issues. But in family counseling, these sessions are usually held with all of the concerned family members being present in them.
For instance, if the issues are between partners or married couples, then only the two of them attend the session. If the issues have to be discussed between the whole family, then siblings or kids join the session along with their parents or other family members.
From there, a licensed therapist or qualified counselor takes the responsibility to lay out the issue at hand for everyone to discuss, and determine a resolution accordingly.
For instance, if an issue such as addiction involves one single person, then the family counseling is targeted at how the person feels and how other family members could support them. If the issue involves the whole family, such as the parents going through a divorce, then the problem is discussed in how the family could support each other and especially the children through the troubling time.
This same notion applies to matters of grief, bereavement, or other conflicts.
When to Seek Family Counseling?
Even with its clear approach, it could often be difficult to determine when and how you need family counseling. But by knowing the signs, you can seek help in a timely manner.
Typically, the first few signs of needing family counseling are:
- When your family is going through constant conflict.
- When your children are acting out for one reason or another.
- When you and your partner are going through separation or divorce.
- When your family go through the death of a family member, or has suffered a loss of any kind.
- When a family member is going through addiction.
- When a family member is having behavioral, physical, or mental health issues.
It is important to remember that while these are the most common signs to seek out help in the form of family counseling, they are not set in stone. If your family is going through any issues that you think may be resolved with qualified help, then reach out and seek professional help.
Remember, the harmful myths about therapy are just that, myths without any substantial proof. Therapy can actually help your family go through difficult issues in a healthy and safe manner.
The key is to shake off the stigma of therapy and seek help when you need it the most. It could save your family from falling apart, and have all of you come out at the other end stronger than ever.