The word “family” can have a lot of meanings, but its official definition is a group of people related by blood or ancestry. Now, some of us are closer with our family members than others. But there’s no denying the profound effect one’s family can have on their livelihood—whether the relationships with their loved ones are tight-knit or not.
For example: John has never been close to his parents or his siblings. In fact, he suffered mental and emotional abuse from them at a young age. As soon as John turned 18, he left his home and never looked back. Today, several years later, he talks to his family every now and then—who have apologized profusely for how they treated him—but keeps his distance (and rightfully so). Still, he wonders if those relationships could bloom, as he struggles to trust and allow himself to grow close to people.
Unfortunately, John doesn’t have a great history with his family. But he understands the effects that these relationships have on him to this day. Family therapy could help John talk to his family members about the abuse he suffered, gain closure in this chapter of life, and maybe even build those relationships back up (if John wanted to). In a nutshell, family therapy helps families make reparations and improve their relationships with one another. If this sounds like something your family could benefit from, consider reaching out to Thriveworks Counseling in Annapolis, MD.
What Is Family Therapy? Who Is It For?
As we just described, family therapy is designed to help families work through their issues and build up their relationships. This type of therapy can help virtually any and every family, as there are often things to improve upon in our closest relationships. However, it can prove especially beneficial to families that are going through a particularly challenging time. These challenges include:
- A move or another major transition
- Mental illness, such as addiction
- Interpersonal conflicts
- Behavior issues in kids
Family therapy is designed with each family’s specific challenges and needs in mind. However, it works by promoting collaboration among the family. Family members will work together to understand each other’s needs, concerns, and issues. Their therapist will encourage them to support each other through these tough conversations and periods of rebuilding.
The Foundation of Family Therapy: How Does It Work?
Again, family therapy is designed on an individual basis—it can look different from one family to the next because every family is different! That said, there are a few common approaches to family therapy, of which your own family therapist might utilize:
- Structural therapy: This approach is focused on helping families strengthen the family unit. This style checks that parents are in control, and both parents and adults set appropriate boundaries. If your therapist employs this method, they will observe familial interactions and then works to enhance these relationships.
- Systemic therapy: This type of therapy is focused on the meanings behind each family members’ behaviors. Therapists empower their clients to take a deep dive into their interpersonal challenges.
- Strategic therapy: This approach is focused on empowering members to communicate more effectively. Therapists will assign homework, which is designed to help the family better assess their family dynamics and how they could be improved.
If you decide to meet with a family therapist at Thriveworks Counseling in Annapolis, they’ll get to know your family and then employ the method that they think will best help you. This plan will be based on your needs and goals, of which you can communicate to your counselor and also allow them to observe themselves.
Schedule a Family Therapy Session at Thriveworks Counseling in Annapolis, MD
Thriveworks Counseling is honored to help the people of Annapolis, MD (and beyond)! If you think that your family could use a little help or guidance from a therapist, consider trying family therapy. If you’re interested in this pursuit, call Thriveworks. We can set you up with a family therapist in Annapolis, MD, right away, and you could meet with them as soon as today or tomorrow.