Does the whole family have to participate in family counseling?
Some of the most common relationship struggles are those within our family. Even though we may have walked through some of the same experiences together, each family member has their own personal experiences. How we cope (the survival strategies we use) to get through uncomfortable and even abusive situations is as individual as our fingerprints. Have you ever thought, I just wish I could get someone to help me address the issues interfering with my relationship with my brother, sister, mother, father, step parent, and/or grandparent? Maybe you have members of your family who would be willing to go to therapy and members who wouldn’t. Maybe you have had to set firm boundaries with some family members but not others. Does this mean I can’t do family therapy? Is there any help for the family relationships I do want to repair? These are all very good questions.
The beauty of effective family therapy is that the counselor can help you figure out how to best pursue healing detached and/or strained relationships within your family. Once the therapist hears more details about the relationship/s you're seeking to restore, the therapist can recommend how to proceed. You may be advised to have some individual therapy prior to beginning family sessions. Or the therapist may recommend having as many family members who are willing to participate come to the initial session, then have an individual session with each member and then the therapist may recommend sessions with dyads or triads of the family members that are experiencing the most distress. You can also pursue relationship counseling with one particular family member in your family such as a father/son, sister/sister, mother/daughter, mother/son or brother/sister relationship. Likewise, you can pursue family sessions for 2 or 3 members of a family but not the entire family. The best news of all is that you don’t have to worry about how to make the decision about who, when or how to involve family members to best meet the desires you are seeking to fulfill. Your therapist will gather all of the necessary information to recommend the therapeutic approach to best meet your desired outcome. Of course, there is no way to guarantee any specific outcome because each individual has their own free will but our highly experienced therapist can make the best recommendation on how to proceed.
Fortunately, all of the therapists in our practice have specialized training to assist clients in relationship repairs. Whether trauma is involved, an event led to estrangement, you’ve never had the relationships you desire or you have just drifted apart from your family member, we are here to help. Contact Margo to find out how to get started. (770) 451-0404.
*Even though family therapy is available at other counseling practices for families with minor children, our practice specializes in family therapy for adults.*