Family Therapy – or to give it its full title, Family and Systemic Psychotherapy – helps people in a close relationship help each other.It enables family members, couples and others who care about each other to express and explore difficult thoughts and emotions safely, to understand each other’s experiences and views, appreciate each other’s needs, build on strengths and make useful changes in their relationships and their lives. Individuals can find Family Therapy helpful, as an opportunity to reflect on important relationships and find ways forward.
Research shows Family Therapy is useful for children, young people and adults experiencing a very wide range of difficulties and experiences.
Family Therapy aims to be:
- Inclusive and considerate of the needs of each member of the family and/or other key relationships (systems) in people’s lives
- Recognise and build on peoples’ strengths and relational resources
- Work in partnership ‘with’ families and others, not ‘on’ them
- Sensitive to diverse family forms and relationships, beliefs and cultures
- Enable people to talk, together or individually, often about difficult or distressing issues, in ways that respect their experiences, invite engagement and support recovery.
I spent many years training Relate Counsellors and use a combination of systemic and psychodynamic approaches and techniques to help you work through your relationship problems. Techniques include open discussions, conflict management and analysing negative patterns of behaviour. Many couples are apprehensive if they haven’t been in therapy before, but it’s not about blames or attack, it’s about understanding and all working together to help the relationship repair and flourish.
Some of the issues a couple bring to therapy might be; an affair has taken place, sex (or lack of it) has become an issue, a new baby has impacted on the relationship, or it may be time has eroded away the good romantic feelings and it’s a struggle to get them back. Whatever the reasons, I provide a space where you are not judged – it is not a place where one partner is seen as right and the other as wrong, but more a confidential space where you can both explore how to make the relationship stronger and better. Another area of work is helping older couples who are moving into the last trimester of their life and how this impacts on their relationship.