No families are stable, healthy and happy all the time. The stresses of modern life, the need for better work-life balance, a family crisis of one kind or another or mental health challenges for one or more family members can bring a family to its knees at any time. Many families have built-in resiliency to many of these problems. But even the best families can feel a need for help beyond the family's own resources.
Do We Need Counselling?
Consider the interactions between members of your family. Are relationships within your family unit hostile or non-existent? Are there recurring issues in your home that seem impossible to solve? Does your family need help learning how to communicate with one another? Oftentimes families seeking therapy are suffering from high conflict or hostile engagements between family members. Parents and children may both feel like they don’t receive the respect necessary to maintain a healthy relationship, or perhaps a relationship between two or more members simply does not exist.
The goal of Family Therapy is to create feelings of safety, respect and understanding between family members. When all family members feel emotionally secure in family discussions, they can discuss issues and disclose feelings. With each member feeling heard and validated, the family can work together to find solutions to problems and build individual relationships between all members.
How Does It Work?
In Family Counselling we focus on the family as an entity. Problems with one family member may be an indicator of a larger family problem. And treating only the person with the problem is akin to treating the symptoms of a disease without addressing the disease itself. Family therapy is more solution-focused than individual therapy, and is generally shorter and more specific, with defined end goals.
I am trained and experienced in observing the interactional patterns of the family and together we will work on the following:
We will examine the structure of the family to get a clear picture of how your family is organized. This involves exploring the boundaries in your family, which are artificial lines that indicates limits in a family. Another important focus point is the communication patterns as well as stability and change. How stable is your family in terms of life cycle transitions? How do you handle change?
We will identify the different roles of the family. Roles are functions performed by someone in a familiar situation. Roles are expressed through interaction with other family members. Similar to rules, roles can be healthy or unhealthy. They can facilitate family functioning or hinder it.
Rules & Rituals
We will look at the rituals in your family. These are the customs that help to establish a family identity and continue the family customs. In connection to ritual, we will also talk about the rules in your family. Rules are the stated and unstated guidelines for the way a family function. These become established through repetition.
We will talk about the hierarchy in your family. This is an important focus because hierarchies are the ordered subsystems within a family. They are defined by tasks and functions. For example, parents usually are at the top of the hierarchy and hold most of the responsibility for family members' well-being.
Let's get started now if you feel out of control and caught up in too many power struggles.
Or you can book a free consultation and we will discuss what the next step could be.
>> online (if 2 family members) + in person therapy <<
You can also read one of my articles on family issues here.