Even a happy family needs help sometimes, and working with a family therapist is a great way for you and your loved ones to learn new tools and perspectives. In addition, you’ll learn about communication and sharpen your skills when it comes to resolving conflict.
Still, it’s not an easy decision.
It’s common for at least one family member to be resistant, but it’s important to remember that giving therapy a try is not a sign of weakness or failure. On the contrary, it shows strength and courage to ask for help. All that said, perhaps the trickiest part is knowing what family therapy is like.
What is Family Therapy Like?
Of course, like many forms of therapy, the process can vary widely. But generally, your therapist will connect with whatever family members opt to participate. As a result, everyone will get a chance to ask and reply to questions. From these conversations, the therapist can better understand:
- Different angles on the problem
- Where the trouble started
- Underlying issues
- What the family has been doing to address problems until now
A treatment plan will be formulated, but on average, family therapy lasts for at least 12 sessions. The goal is not about speed. Your family therapist will work with you to resolve problems in a time frame that makes sense for your situation.
So how do you know if your family should try family therapy? Like adjusting to a blended family or going through a loss, some issues are obvious reasons to seek support. However, in other cases, the signs might not be as obvious.
If you’re feeling unsure, below are some signs that it might be right for you.
5 Signs That You Should Consider Family Therapy
1. Communication Breakdown
It may take a while to notice, but communication can slowly become more difficult and less common. This is a major red flag and reason enough to contact a family therapist.
A huge contributing factor is our increasingly digital world, and it’s not uncommon to notice patterns of:
- Family dinners growing silent except for the sounds of notifications
- You and other family members starting and ending your day with your devices
- Primarily learning about each other through social media posts
On the surface, it might seem like a simple case of your phones getting in the way, but family therapy is where you’ll dig deeper to search for possible underlying causes.
2. Alcoholism, Substance Abuse, or Other Addictions
Addictions can be hidden for a long time, but make no mistake, they create major problems — not just for the person dealing with addiction.
These struggles can range from drugs to gambling to pornography and alcohol, but all of them have serious consequences and require professional help. Family therapy is where every single family member gets the opportunity to share what they see and how they are feeling about the situation.
3. Problems at School
Every child can have a bad day or a poor test result. However, what we’re referring to are ongoing patterns. Family therapy can be helpful if your child is demonstrating new habits and patterns like:
- Behavior issues
- Low school attendance
- Failing grades
- Running with the wrong crowd
Keep in mind, all of the scenarios above can impact more than the child, so family support through problems like these is crucial.
4. Disordered Eating
If a member of your family is struggling with this, it might not be immediately clear since they try to hide it. But if you have any reason to suspect this is the case, educate yourself. Learn more about what you’re seeing and the symptoms, and most of all, talk to an expert if you’re unsure of how to approach the topic.
Strong emotional reactions can morph into violence or domestic abuse, and if this is happening, your family needs to address it immediately. Working with a family therapist can help your family deal with the trauma associated with it and move forward into a healthy future.
Family Therapy Columbus Ohio
Obviously, there are other signs and issues to watch for, so let’s connect and talk about it if you’re not sure what you’re experiencing. Please don’t hesitate to reach out for help from a family therapist; it could make a big difference in your family dynamics and give you that positive change you’re looking for. If you decide you’re in need of a family therapist Columbus Ohio, please contact Blue Boat Counseling today to get started.