Couples and Family Counselling
Relationships are difficult, and require constant attention and work. It’s unusual for two people, with their own two unique personalities, opinions, values and goals, to get along harmoniously 100% of the time. For this reason, it’s quite common for every relationship to have its hiccups.
Couples counselling can assist with:
- Improved communication between one another
- Conflict resolution
- Building intimacy and a sense of closeness
- Deciding to continue or end your relationship
Family therapy provides a safe environment for families and those in close relationships to find ways to sort out worries or problems. While some families attend to address family issues (e.g. conflict or communication difficulties), others arrive with concerns about a particular family member.
The family systems theory suggests that individuals cannot be understood in isolation from one another, but rather as a part of their family, as the family is an emotional unit. Families are systems of interconnected and interdependent individuals, none of whom can be understood in isolation from the system.
Key concepts in family therapy include:
- Boundaries– family rules which determine membership in systems and responsibilities.
- Coalitions – negative alliances between two or more family members, a version of triangles.
- Family belief systems – problems are maintained by the families construction of the problem.
- Triangles – triadic interactional configurations which is the basic building block of any emotional system. When a two-party system becomes unstable, a third person is involved to stabilise it.
When one person in a family or other relationship is experiencing difficulties, those around him or her are usually affected too. Working with families as a whole can address the impact on each person. Family therapy also ensures that all family members can contribute to the solution and provides an opportunity for family members to build stronger and more positive relationships with each other, which can play an important role in an individual’s recovery, as well as benefiting the family as a whole.