Families are systems where each person is interwoven with every other individual. For better or worse, for richer or poorer, families share more than their gene pool. Families influence each member’s social behavior, ethical standards, and emotional processing. Some people love their families and try to emulate what they inherited. Others are doing their best to distance themselves from their families. In either case, understanding a person’s family is the context for understanding the person.
When each family member contributes in a meaningful way and each member’s needs are met, families can be wonderful. But everyone knows families do not always work like that. Achieving harmony is challenging, and at times, it can feel nearly impossible. Here are just a few of the ways life can throw families off balance:
- Spouses who disagree on parenting styles, and children who experience behavior problems.
- The frustration or anger of one family member affects other family members.
- Apathy or tension between family members.
- Poor communication or lack of communication has led to hurt feelings and/or distance.
- The hurtful family pattern of behavior is playing out over and over again.
When life knocks families out of balance, it may be helpful to have an outside perspective to help you get back on track. The goal of family therapy is to help each individual family member by helping the family as a unit. The family therapists and psychologists at Thriveworks Charleston know that every family needs a little help along the way. Our counselors love helping family work through their challenges together, preserve every individual’s mental health, and grow closer throughout the process. If this sounds like something you’re interested in or could benefit from, reach out to Thriveworks Charleston today.
How Does Family Therapy Work?
Family therapy is built upon the foundational idea that people’s behaviors, beliefs, and identities are developed within their families of origin. Therefore, understanding an individual fully involves understanding their family.
Family structural therapy and family systems therapy are the most well-known techniques used in family therapy. These techniques explore how a family copes with stress, offers comfort, sets expectations, and defines their values. These family functions significantly impact each individual member’s life. Other mitigating factors in a family’s dynamic may be each member’s love language, personality type, and/or birth order. Understanding each person and understanding the family as a whole may help the family work together to overcome life’s challenges.
The goal of therapy is for families to experience interdependence—i.e., each member is respected both individually and within the group. Strong individuals may mean strong families, and strong families may mean strong individuals. Some of the benefits that healthy, interdependent families may experience include…
- More secure attachments between spouses and between children and parents (and children may continue with these relational skills in their adulthood relationships).
- Reduced risk of poverty (when parents share income potential).
- Increased comfort and emotional connection between family members.
- Reduced risk of depression and anxiety disorders.
- Increased life coping skills for stress, challenge, and hardship
- Reduced cases of neglect and abuse.
Getting Help for your Family
Take a moment to think about what your family may be going through. Are multiple people affected by the challenges your family faces? Do multiple people in the family need to make adjustments for the family to regain its balance? If so, then family therapy may be the place where you can work together toward your family’s goals. These are only a few of the reasons clients have started family therapy at Thriveworks Charleston:
- Hormonal fluctuations in parents that may be leading to conflict
- Abuse, addiction, and/or neglect
- Premarital counseling and/or marriage maintenance counseling
- Domineering parenting style that results in rebellious children
- An unequally distributed burden of care for a special-needs family member
- Lenient parenting style that results in out-of-control children
- Family members with unmet needs
- Intimacy challenges in the marriage
- Tension/strain in in-law, spousal, or parent/child relationships
- Crises such as job loss, death of a loved one, or loss of the family’s home
There is no easy path to overcome these common challenges, but when families are ready to work together, they can acknowledge unhealthy patterns, empathize with one another, and find a way to thrive. Let us help. Reach out to Thriveworks Charleston.
Work with a Family Therapist or Psychologist at Thriveworks Charleston
The therapists at Thriveworks Charleston understand that families face real challenges that could tear them apart. But our therapists also understand that with the right support and guidance, families can grow closer together.
Thriveworks Charleston is ready to help. When you call to make an appointment for family therapy, a scheduling specialist will answer your call. We have convenient appointment times available, including nights and weekends. We also work with many insurance plans! This is part of our mission to best serve all of our clients. Call Thriveworks Charleston to set up your appointment for family therapy when you are ready. We’ll be here.