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What is family therapy?
Family therapy regards every family as a unique system with its own structure and patterns of communication.
Family therapy is based on the belief that the problems experienced by one family member may be a symptom of a larger family problem. To treat only the member who is identified as ill is like treating the symptom of a disease but not the disease itself.
This kind of therapy teaches family members about how families function in general and helps the family focus less on the member who has been identified as having the problem and to focus more on the family as a whole. It helps members to identify conflicts and anxieties and helps the family develop strategies to resolve them.
The therapist does not to take sides, blame, or provide simple ‘one size fits all’ answers. The aim is to engage people in sharing understandings and views with each other and exploring ways forward that work for them.
What difficulties are helped by Family Therapy?
Family therapy is particularly useful for children, young people and adults in the following situations:
- Child and adolescent mental health issues
- Child and adolescent behaviour difficulties
- Parenting issues
- Separation, divorce and step-family life