Arguments in the family are just a natural part of life. When you spend a lot of time with someone, conflicts are inevitable. So, what do you do when it feels like tensions and resentment are building and building?
You may try to talk things out. You may give having a sit down meeting a try, letting each person talk and truly listening to each other. This may help.
But what if it doesn't? What if you feel as though you and your family have exhausted all of your own conflict resolutions and nothing seems to be working?
If none of your own attempts at conflict resolution are working, family therapy may be just what you and your family need. Family therapy is a type of therapy in which a family gathers to seek the roots of their issues, learn communication skills that can help with conflict resolution, and help the family find a solution to their growing tensions. So, whether the conflict is between siblings, a mother and child, a father and child, the parents, or the whole family; family therapy can help you.
If you feel as though your family dynamic is effecting your own or your other family member's quality of life, family therapy will likely be very beneficial to you. There are many different reasons one may seek family therapy. A few reasons are:
Marital issues. If you and your spouse are experiencing marital issues that may be affecting you and your family's quality of life, family therapy may be beneficial to you. You may be able to work through your problems and learn techniques for conflict resolution in the future.
Understanding and coping with a family member's health issues. When a family member is physically or mentally ill, it can take a toll on the whole family. Family therapy can help the family members work through their emotions and learn coping mechanisms when things are tough.
Parent-child conflicts. When there is constant conflict between two people in a home, the tension will begin to spread to the other family members. Family therapy can help you find a solution to your parent-child conflicts, allowing the whole family to feel more comfortable at home.
Sibling conflicts. Siblings argue. It's just a well known fact. But what if those arguments seem to escalate more and more with each passing day? Family therapy can help resolve the issues before they go too far.
Dealing with life changes. From divorce, to remarriage, to moving away from friends; there are tons of life changes that require an adjustment period. Family therapy can help your family deal with the emotional challenges these changes create for your family.
Parental overwhelm or doubts. Being a parent is one of the toughest jobs you will have in this lifetime. If you find that you are constantly feeling overwhelmed or are doubting your parenting techniques, seeking the help of a family therapist will allow you to find guidance, reassurance, and a confidant to depend on.
Divorce. If your partner and you have decided to seek a divorce, family therapy can help the two of you work through the divorce process in the best way possible for your family. Family therapy may help guide the two of you to a healthy co-parenting relationship and help keep your family intact, even when the two of you separate.
Family therapy has the goal of creating a stronger, more functional familial bond for you and your family. For the patients of a family therapist, the goals will typically be:
Stronger communication skills. Sometimes, conflicts arise due to miscommunication or misunderstandings. A family therapist's goal is to teach their clients communication skills that will help them avoid miscommunications that may be the cause of many conflicts.
Setting healthy boundaries. Setting healthy boundaries is a practice that will be beneficial to everyone. These boundaries will allow everyone in the family to understand what the other's need in order to feel safe, respected, and comfortable in their home.
Address problems within the familial relationships. Getting to the root causes of the conflict being experienced within a relationship will help the therapist guide the clients to a resolution.
Creating a safe space for being open with each other. Whatever family members wish to discuss in family therapy, from emotions to issues with another person, family therapy sets the goal of creating a safe space for every client to say everything they are needing to say.
Improve the family's relationship with each other. When conflicts feel constant and tensions are rising, family therapy sets a goal to resolve conflicts and help a family become a team once again.
Family therapy is designed to help you and your family members ultimately find a solution to the tensions that may be building, the conflicts that keep reoccurring, and the boundaries that keep getting crossed. The process of family therapy is based on how to get the family members to understand the root causes of their issues.
In the beginning, the family therapist will allow the family members to ask any questions they may have in regards to therapy. So, if you enter family therapy with any questions, the therapist will answer honestly.
The therapist will then begin their own assessment about the family dynamic from boundaries all the way to the structure of the family. The therapist will also ask about the conflicts, issues, and the reason you have decided to visit them.
The therapist will then decide on an approach to solving the family's problems based on their assessment. The therapist will use methods that are fitting to the family to help them work through their issues.
All families deal with their issues from time to time, but when your family conflicts seem to be rising in tension and being home feels like walking on eggshells, it may be time to seek a family therapist. Our therapists are experienced and compassionate individuals who can help you and your family work through familial conflicts that are negatively impacting your family's quality of life. Reach out to us today!