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Therapeutic Modalities

Family Sessions

What is Family Therapy

Family therapy is based on the idea that a family is a system of different parts. A change in any part of the system will trigger changes in all the other parts. This means that when one member of a family is affected by a behavioral health disorder such as mental illness or addiction, everyone is affected.

As a result, family dynamics can change in unhealthy ways. Lies and secrets can build up in the family. Some family members may take on too much responsibility, other family members may act out, and some may just shut down.

Sometimes conditions at home are already unhappy before a family member’s mental illness or addiction emerges. That person’s changing behaviors can throw the family into even greater turmoil. Often a family remains stuck in unhealthy patterns even after the family member with the behavioral health disorder moves into recovery. Even in the best circumstances, families can find it hard to adjust to the person in their midst who is recovering, who is behaving differently than before, and who needs support.

Family therapy can help the family as a whole recover and heal. It can help all members of the family make specific, positive changes as the person in recovery changes. These changes can help all family members heal from the trauma of mental illness or addiction.

When Should Family Therapy Start

Family therapy is typically introduced after the individual in treatment for mental illness or addiction has made progress in recovery. This could be a few months after treatment starts, or a year or more later.

Timing is important because people new to recovery have a lot to do. They are working to remain stable in their new patterns of behavior and ways of thinking. They are just beginning to face the many changes they must make to stay mentally healthy or to remain sober. They are learning such things as how to deal with urges to fall into old patterns, how to resist triggers and cravings, how to adhere to medication regimens, and how to avoid temptations to rationalize and make excuses. For them to explore family issues at the same time can be too much. It can potentially contribute to relapse into mental illness or substance using behaviors.

Family therapy tends to be most helpful once the person in treatment is fully committed to the recovery process and is ready to make more changes. The person’s counselor can advise on the best time to start family therapy.

What are the Goals of Family Therapy

There are two main goals in family therapy. One goal is to help everyone give the right kind of support to the family member in behavioral health treatment, so that recovery sticks and relapse is avoided. The other goal is to strengthen the whole family’s emotional health, so that everyone can thrive.

Specific objectives for family therapy are unique to each family, and these objectives may change over time. The family decides for itself what to focus on, and when.

Check Your Insurance Coverage

We work with most PPO insurance’s out-of-network benefits. Our team is happy to help you verify benefits.

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Check Your Insurance Coverage

Insurance benefits vary greatly depending on the policy you have, so we obtain a detailed quote of your coverate. It usually takes between sixty to ninety minutes depending on how fast we can connect with your insurance company and the time of day.

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