Family therapy: in which cases, procedure, benefits

Because the suffering of one of the members of the family can hide a dysfunction of the whole family unit, or because the interactions between the members of the family have become difficult or even impossible, it is sometimes necessary to resort to therapy. family.

  Family therapy: in which cases, procedure, benefits

Family therapy consists of psychological support for the family group . It differs from individual monitoring where only one person, adult or child, is concerned.

What is Family Therapy?

' The family is considered as a system in its own right, with its own functioning, roles, rules but also possible dysfunctions. We are not interested in individuality but in what the fact of being in a group creates. ', explains Rachida Raynaud. The objective will therefore be to work on the dysfunctions observed within the entity formed by the family . 'We include at least two generations in family therapy: parents and children, sometimes also grandparents. It can be a nuclear, single-parent or blended family, but we never include a friend, or an outside person “, adds the psychologist.

The different types of family therapy

There are different types of family therapy. ' The whole is more than the sum of the parts. We don't just add the sum of individualities, put together they create something new “, explains Rachida Raynaud.

systemic family therapy

Systemic family therapy is the most used and widespread. ' More psychoanalytical, it focuses on all that is unconscious, defense mechanisms 'says the psychologist.

Cognitive-behavioral therapy

It is more oriented on behaviors, emotions, attitudes, what is on the surface. ' Whatever the type of therapy, the most difficult thing is to convince all the people concerned to come “, she adds.

Why do family therapy?

Several reasons can lead to undertaking family therapy. In some cases, this is a self-indication for therapy. People come spontaneously to family therapy. ' Difficulties can be clearly identified by a family member. A parent who will notice a conflict, communication difficulties, something that does not work well, a feeling of not succeeding “, explains the psychologist.

In other cases, family therapy is suggested by a professional (doctor, psychologist, etc.). ' A psychologist can for example realize during a therapy with a child that his symptoms will not be resolved individually, that they result from a family functioning. It is better then to support this group there to try to solve the problem '” specifies Rachida Raynaud. Certain symptoms of the child are protective of a dysfunction in the family. The child carries a symptom which will not move, at the risk of upsetting this balance. It's not good for anyone because everyone is in a well-established role. You have to work with the parents, the siblings, so that the child gets out of this role. The imbalance can then be beneficial' , explains the psychologist.

Family therapy: what are the reasons for consultation?

As Rachida Raynaud details for us, family therapy is useful in many cases.

  • If proven conflicts do not subside and bring suffering: a parent/child conflict, an anxiety-provoking or conflicting atmosphere, tensions
  • A child has a symptom that does not change, a behavior disorder , an eating disorder, is failing at school, has violent behavior, addictions, inhibiting behavior, symptoms that would not have improved with individual care.
  • When there are misunderstandings in the family, taboos, a painful family history, events that arise and are not digested such as bereavement or separation.
  • The crises that families go through and impact the group, especially adolescence. The development of the child affects many things in the role of parents and can lead to an imbalance.

What is a family therapy session like?

The psychologist has several tools at his disposal: role plays, a genogram (family tree), mediations that allow him to observe how each person finds his place within the group. ' There are also mediations adapted to children. We offer them to draw, we can leave them more free, do role-playing games with stuffed animals, it depends on the therapists' , says Rachida Raynaud.

' The therapist can receive the family alone, but in general family therapy is done with two therapists . This allows you to be attentive to all the details, behaviors and reactions of each “, adds the psychologist.

It also happens that the therapy is filmed. A therapist conducts the interview, the second is more in the observation. The mode of operation is really specific to the therapist.

Family therapy: who to contact?

' It is very important to consult a professional trained in family therapy. This requires special certification. It can be a psychologist, a psychotherapist or a psychiatrist “, explains Rachida Raynaud.

Family Therapy: Cost and Reimbursement

It is quite possible to do family therapy with a psychologist in private practice, but there are more and more possibilities to do it in CMPs (medico-psychological centers) which will be targeted solely at family therapy. . This is the public service, so there is social security coverage and the sessions are fully reimbursed, with no upfront costs.

thanks to Rachida Raynaud , Child-Adolescent-Parenting PsychologistSource