Family Therapy

Family Therapy

We provide family therapy in the city of Vaughan of the Greater Toronto Area.

Family therapy is provided by an experienced Registered Marriage & Family Therapist who received his graduate degree in marriage & family therapy and has been specializing in working with couples and families for more than 10 years. He is a husband and a father and therefore understands not only the clinical approach to family therapy but also family life itself.

What is family therapy?

Family therapy or family counselling is a type of psychotherapy or counselling where either the whole family or the various subunits of the family meet with a family therapist to process issues and misunderstandings. Common family subunits that initially present to family therapy are one of the parents and a child or both parents and a child. Less common subunits seen in family counselling are two siblings, or one parent and two children. It does happen though.

Occasionally, a couple may want to expand their marriage counselling and invite the parents from one side or the other to join them in family therapy. This is typically done after the couple has resolved most of their concerns but feel stuck because of the ongoing issues with in-laws.

What are some common issues brought to family therapy?

There is a wide range of problems presented during family therapy. Some common ones include:

  • A family struggling with problematic behaviour of one family member
  • Parents concerned about their child’s behaviour
  • An adult child trying to resolve their relationship with one of the parents
  • A parent trying to resolve their relationship with an adult child
  • Parents concerned about sibling rivalry
  • Family members concerned about an addiction of someone in the family
  • Issues with personal boundaries are also quite common in families

What are the goals of family therapy?

A typical goal of family therapy is to find solutions to the issues that the family cannot resolve using internal resources. The therapist needs to be skilled at listening to all present family members without siding with one or the other. Basically, the family therapist needs to be impartial.

One important goal of family therapy is for all members of the family to feel that they have not lost in the process. Everyone needs to feel that the process was fair towards them and their interests.

What are the benefits of family therapy?
  • Resolution of crises and stressful interactions
  • Calmer home environment through reduced arguments
  • Family members better understanding each other
  • Restored feeling of closeness to loved family members

Which family members need to participate in family therapy?

During family therapy it is important to meet with everyone who is involved in the issue. Sometimes it is the whole family. Sometimes it is the parents and one of the children. Sometimes it is one parent and one child.

It is not uncommon to alternate meetings between the whole family and certain subunits of the family. The parents may come for a separate session in order to express their perspective without worrying about hurting the child’s feelings. The child may have a separate session in order to feel emotionally safer without the parents in the room. It is the job of the family therapist to find a common ground between the parents and the children. Once the therapist identifies that common ground it is much easier to have the whole family in one room and help the members clarify misunderstandings and re-connect with each other.

We serve clients from Vaughan, Richmond Hill, Aurora, Newmarket, North York and other parts of the Greater Toronto Area.