FAMILY

Counseling

Family counseling resolves relationship issues and improves communication between the parties involved. Family counseling may refer to the relationship between any 2 (or more) people in a family unit or to the impact of a family situation or issue on an individual.

Examples of Family Counseling

There are many situations where family counseling might be a good fit.

For example, parents might attend over concern for their child. If the child is depressed or having other issues, the parents may see a counselor with or without the child. The important distinction is that the main focus of these sessions is on how to help the child in that situation.

The whole family might attend family counseling together if there are issues stemming from a divorce in the family. Or perhaps if family members are experiencing grief due to a loss in the family, they would benefit from family counseling.

There are thousands of situations that could fall under the family counseling umbrella. The main concept is that the focus of the sessions is on a specific family issue.

Examples of Family Counseling

There are many situations where family counseling might be a good fit.

For example, parents might attend over concern for their child. If the child is depressed or having other issues, the parents may see a counselor with or without the child. The important distinction is that the main focus of these sessions is on how to help the child in that situation.

The whole family might attend family counseling together if there are issues stemming from a divorce in the family. Or perhaps if family members are experiencing grief due to a loss in the family, they would benefit from family counseling.

There are thousands of situations that could fall under the family counseling umbrella. The main concept is that the focus of the sessions is on a specific family issue.

So, why is family counseling its own offering?

What really makes it different from individual or couples counseling? Although these may not always apply, there are a few main concepts that set family counseling apart from other types of counseling:

  • In most cases, marriage and individual counseling are about more than one exact subject. They are focused on all things surrounding the relationship. Family counseling is usually for a very specific issue. Once that issue is resolved, the counseling typically does not continue or transforms into a different type of counseling.
  • Each type of counseling follows one of many theoretical frameworks. Although there are many different frameworks one could subscribe to, the main theory behind family counseling is that we all (as individuals) are impacted by our family dynamic. Whether we are directly involved in the issue or not, the stability and dynamic of our family affects our daily lives and relationships. Therefore, it makes sense to address these family issues first.
  • In many cases, family counseling can include multiple family members. A whole group may be present to work through their issues together.
  • Where marriage counseling typically requires both parties to be present, family counseling does not. For instance, if the concern is a child being bullied, the parents may come in together without the child.

The Differences of Family Counseling

The Differences of Family Counseling

So, why is family counseling its own offering?

What really makes it different from individual or couples counseling? Although these may not always apply, there are a few main concepts that set family counseling apart from other types of counseling:

  • In most cases, marriage and individual counseling are about more than one exact subject. They are focused on all things surrounding the relationship. Family counseling is usually for a very specific issue. Once that issue is resolved, the counseling typically does not continue or transforms into a different type of counseling.
  • Each type of counseling follows one of many theoretical frameworks. Although there are many different frameworks one could subscribe to, the main theory behind family counseling is that we all (as individuals) are impacted by our family dynamic. Whether we are directly involved in the issue or not, the stability and dynamic of our family affects our daily lives and relationships. Therefore, it makes sense to address these family issues first.
  • In many cases, family counseling can include multiple family members. A whole group may be present to work through their issues together.
  • Where marriage counseling typically requires both parties to be present, family counseling does not. For instance, if the concern is a child being bullied, the parents may come in together without the child.

Challenges of Family Counseling

Each type of counseling has its own challenges. Family therapy is no exception.

Often, when there is a family issue, not everyone is equally as invested in counseling as a solution. This is especially true if the topic is concern for a specific member of the family; that specific member might be slightly defensive about the focus being directly on him or her. That is why it is important that you find a counselor who concentrates on making the environment feel safe for the individual.

Naturally, the more people involved in a discussion, the more complicated it can become. There are many different issues going on at once, along with many different personalities and opinions of the situation. For this reason, it is important to find a counselor with experience specifically in Family Counseling. Experienced family counselors know how to understand and manage the many different facets of these conversations.

All families have their challenges. Make sure to select a family counselor who can help uncover the issues at the core of difficult family situations. The right counselor will be able to listen to the different individuals involved and help all parties develop better understanding together.

Challenges of Family Counseling

Each type of counseling has its own challenges. Family therapy is no exception.

Often, when there is a family issue, not everyone is equally as invested in counseling as a solution. This is especially true if the topic is concern for a specific member of the family; that specific member might be slightly defensive about the focus being directly on him or her. That is why it is important that you find a counselor who concentrates on making the environment feel safe for the individual.

Naturally, the more people involved in a discussion, the more complicated it can become. There are many different issues going on at once, along with many different personalities and opinions of the situation. For this reason, it is important to find a counselor with experience specifically in Family Counseling. Experienced family counselors know how to understand and manage the many different facets of these conversations.

All families have their challenges. Make sure to select a family counselor who can help uncover the issues at the core of difficult family situations. The right counselor will be able to listen to the different individuals involved and help all parties develop better understanding together.

Get In Touch

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5505 Red Rock Lane
Suite 400 Lincoln, NE 68516
Phone: 402.420.6698
Fax: 402.420.6717

ABOUT BRAD RIDDLE

As a Licensed Independent Mental Health Practitioner (LIMHP) for over 30 years, he has counseled at a university, mental health agency, in his own private practice, and on church staff.

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