3 MIN READ | Psychotherapy

Ellen Diamond

How Does Family Therapy Work?

Cite This
Ellen Diamond, (2022, September 1). How Does Family Therapy Work?. Psychreg on Psychotherapy. https://www.psychreg.org/how-does-family-therapy-work/
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Although many people still don’t believe in therapy and ignore this tool as something they can use to be better people, there are many ways therapists can improve a person’s life to make them the best version of themselves. 

Regardless of that, it’s not always good to go to therapy blindfolded if you don’t know what to expect from each session. Nonetheless, there’s no need to worry about anything as long as you choose a therapist you know is experienced and qualified for the job. 

There are many types of therapy, and each one focuses on something specific, so therapists need to know the cases they want to take the most before they start working. 

Do you want to know more about family therapy and how much it can help you? Keep reading if you want to learn more about this interesting topic! 

What is family therapy?

Family therapy, or family counselling, as its name suggests, consists of therapy sessions with some of your family members.

Both traditional and online family therapy sessions aim to help you understand the roots of your problems with your family members and the healthiest ways to address those issues. 

People offering family therapy services should be credentialed by the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT).

Why do people need family therapy?

People are used to thinking they need to suffer from a problem to go to therapy, while you can take therapy sessions to prevent issues from happening.

Family therapy not only helps you understand more about yourself and your family but also the roots of why you treat each other like you do and how you can have a healthier relationship in the future. Naturally, therapists get to this after several sessions of working with you and your family members. 

This type of therapy can include child therapy, couples therapy, and even sessions with your mom, dad, siblings, or any other family member you have a problem with. The point is you shouldn’t hesitate to schedule a family therapy session with any of your relatives if you think there’s something you need to fix with them or if you think your relationship could be better. 

What can you expect from family therapy?

Not everyone knows what to expect from a family therapy session, and that could lead you to not believe in the process or at least doubt it. Believing in the process is one of the most important parts of therapy, so you need to trust the person you hire to help you. 

The first thing you should expect a therapist to do is to study your family’s current relationship and family dynamic. They may also ask questions to know more about your thoughts, emotions, and ability to solve problems as a team. 

Family roles are also essential for this matter since they set the rules and behaviour patterns you will follow in the future. Therefore, therapists may want to know a bit about your past and how things work whenever you have a problem. 

Weaknesses and strengths are equally important, too. You can expect a family therapist to ask a lot of questions about your life and how your family works. 

Therapists may often say things you won’t always like, but you need to listen to them carefully because those are the things that can help you improve as a person and a family member. 

How does family therapy work?

Not all family therapy sessions are the same since not all therapists work the same way, and not all families have the same struggles. It’s not odd to see a therapist adapting to how your family works to plan your sessions. Therefore, it’s difficult to tell how yours could be. 

Regardless of that, family therapy sessions mostly start with therapists asking you a bit about yourself, how your family works, and the roots of the problems you want to solve. They will, then, move forward depending on what you tell them and plan different activities to help you out. 

Traditional family therapy

Traditional or face-to-face family therapy focuses on one issue and can often be solved in a few sessions. On average, 12 sessions last approximately an hour. A therapist will help families with high-conflict issues, such as financial, substance abuse, and behavioural problems. 

After a consultation at the therapist’s office, families can meet with a therapist to identify their areas of concern and create a routine visit plan.

Online family therapy

Telemedicine grew exponentially during the Covid pandemic, so it’s not a surprise that teletherapy became a popular mental health therapy option too..

Clients can participate during family teletherapy sessions after they have registered with a licensed mental healthcare professional. The online family counselling process is similar to traditional services. Families share their current needs and discuss past experiences. Techniques are then practised, followed by an evaluation of the results.

Don’t hesitate to seek professional help

Many are hesitant to engage in a family therapy process because they think it may be something awkward for them, but it’s actually something that can help you understand more about yourself and your relatives, so you shouldn’t hesitate to try it out if you have the chance.


Ellen Diamond did her degree in psychology at the University of Hertfordshire. She is interested in mental health, wellness, and lifestyle.


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