What Is Family Therapy?
Family therapy is a type of group therapy in which people who care for each other work with a clinician. In family therapy, your clinician will help you and your loved ones discover how to communicate, understand, and support each other. Your clinician will also support you in learning how to work through challenges together and support each other through your individual goals. Through family therapy, you can form deeper connections with your loved ones and be healthier support systems to each other on your recovery journey.
Family therapy can help clients and their families with:
- Substance use disorder (SUD)
- Mental health disorders
- Interpersonal conflicts
Are There Different Types of Family Therapy?
There are several types of family therapy that can be mixed and matched to fit the needs of you and your family on your recovery journey. Your clinician will work with you and your family to address the issues impacting your relationships, like SUD and co-occurring mental health disorders.
Some of the different types of family therapy include:
Focuses on establishing roles within the family unit and creating strong boundaries
Helps clients work on recognizing and changing unhealthy reoccurring patterns in communication and interactions
Utilizes out-of-session homework to help clients see repeated patterns and build problem-solving skills
Supports clients in addressing and challenging traditions and belief systems on what is normal within the family
Family behavior therapy (FBT)
Helps clients learn to identify and manage triggers for unhealthy behaviors through communication
Acknowledges the impact generational pain has on family dynamics through conflict patterns spanning multiple generations
Family Therapy Activities
In family therapy, your clinician will use several different types of group activities to support you and your family. Many of the activities used in family therapy support relationship-building, engagement, and conversation starters that make the process of dealing with complex topics less overwhelming.
Some examples of activities you can do in family therapy include:
The miracle question
Helps clients understand each other’s hopes and dreams to better support each other
Engages clients in active listening and emotional expression
Supports clients in recognizing patterns of behaviors in their family across multiple generations
Help clients recognize and understand each other’s gestures and emotional expressions
Icebreaker to help clients become more comfortable with discussing complex topics
Helps clients understand what is important to their loved ones
Prompts teamwork and shows clients how they can overcome conflict and challenges together
Feelings hot potato
A fun way for clients to share thoughts, memories, or ideas with each other
Helps clinicians see the ways in which clients express emotions
Encourages clients to learn how their loved ones think about and express their emotions
Support self-awareness as clients reflect on the positive changes they have made over time in therapy
What Are the Benefits?
Family therapy can be a fundamental part of healing and recovery for you and your loved ones. According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), the benefits of family therapy are intersectional, as the collaborative work you do together can help you with family conflicts, loss, mental health disorders, SUD, and co-occurring disorders. Outside of supporting clients and their families dealing with mental health disorders and SUD, family therapy can make positive connections that improve family dynamics for long-term healing.
Some of the ways family therapy can support you and your loved ones include:
- Strengthen your overall relationships
- Set healthy boundaries
- Improve the way you treat each other
- Build skills to work through challenges together
- Learn to cope with typical day-to-day stressors
- Improve your interpersonal communication skills
- Learn to recognize and acknowledge each other’s emotions
- Deepen your understanding of each other
- Learn how to support each other’s goals
Our loved ones are an important part of our identities. These relationships can play into our culture, beliefs, and values. Going beyond our genetics, our family is the group of people we look to for guidance and support as we navigate through life. When strain is placed on you and your loved ones from the stressors found in SUD and co-occurring disorders, emotional rifts can occur in these foundational relationships.
Research over time has found that family therapy can lead to better outcomes for those struggling with SUD and mental health disorders. Despite this potential, SUD has historically been viewed and treated as an individual’s problem to be dealt with alone in isolation. However, more recent studies continue to identify the significance that family relationships play in the recovery process. Through skill building, strategies, and communication, family therapy can help the person in treatment and their family find support and healing together.
To learn more about how Emerge Recovery TX can support you and your loved ones, visit our Home page.
Family therapy can help you and your loved ones build communication skills, create healthier behavior patterns, and learn to support each other in long-term recovery for the whole family. At Emerge Recovery TX, you can reconnect with your family and friends as you build a life you are excited to live and share with them. Call us today at (737) 237-9663 to learn how family therapy can support you and your loved ones on your journey to recovery.