Every family has seasons where they need help. Whether it’s walking through a hard situation, working on relationships, or just creating a healthier family unit, family counseling is a great way to find help.

Family counseling is for any family that wants support as they learn to understand one another and develop the tools they need to relate to each other well. The skills you learn in family counseling will help you communicate more effectively both now and in the future as you utilize the skills you learn.

Get connected with a Christian Counselor
Please contact our reception team at
(469) 333-6163

Family counseling is a form of psychotherapy focused on the family unit. It typically addresses how to reduce conflict and improve communication between family members, both in common situations and in specific challenges that may arise.

The family unit can mean different things to different people. The most common is for a parent or parents and their children to come to counseling. There is not a specific requirement for who is involved, other than being part of what you consider a family.

The counseling is performed by a therapist, often a psychologist, clinical social worker, or licensed family therapist. It is important to make sure the therapist you choose is experienced working with families and has the necessary license to do so. This will ensure you are working with someone who has the training to help your family.

Family counseling is an opportunity for the family to come together with a trusted, trained outside person to work through issues that concern the family. The family often comes together and works with one therapist as a group to navigate a healthier approach to communicating and resolving issues that are present.

The therapist is a neutral party, not focused on any one individual in the family. They are there to help every member of the family as they listen, guide, and offer strategies to help each person within the family unit. While some families are used to having one person in charge, the family counseling environment allows everyone to be seen and heard as well as contribute to finding solutions to make the family stronger.

Family counseling is for families. This can be defined in whatever way you apply it. While it is not specific to a defined unit as a father, mother, and children, it is typically a household unit or a family unit that has been split up in some way to live in different households.

Family counseling can be any group of people that live in close relationship with one another. This could include extended family that operates as part of a nuclear family, step-parents, step-siblings, adoptive and birth families, and any number of other scenarios.

The key is that they are people that are in a relationship as a family unit.

Addressing a specific issue or struggle is a common catalyst for family counseling. While there is a great variety to the topics, the key component of family counseling is that it is something that affects the whole family in some way.

Common topics for family counseling include (but are not limited to) the following:

  • Conflicts between family members
  • Loss of a family member
  • Financial struggles
  • Disagreements about family responsibilities or expectations
  • Addiction or substance abuse
  • Mental health issues within the family
  • Trauma or traumatic events
  • Abuse
  • Infidelity
  • Behavior issues
  • Separation or divorce
  • Custody issues
  • Blended family adjustments
  • Adoption
  • Grief
  • Illness of a family member
  • Problems in school
  • Eating disorders
  • Self-harm
  • Suicidal ideation
  • Conflicts between siblings
  • Relationships with extended family
  • Coping with special needs
  • Sexuality
  • Anger/aggressive behavior

There are no wrong topics to be considered in family therapy. If a topic is addressed and a therapist thinks a specific person requires some individual support, they may recommend individual therapy. Sometimes marriage therapy is recommended to address marriage-specific issues without the children present. No matter what is required, the therapist can guide the family to whatever services will best help them understand, process, and work through the issues at hand.

Because each family is unique, the counseling will be unique to your family.

During family counseling, the family comes together with the therapist to talk about the issues they are having and work toward resolution or skills to help them move forward.

The sessions are often performed in the therapist’s office, offering a comfortable space for the family to meet. If children are involved, many therapists will try to have age-appropriate activities and tools to utilize that help them express their thoughts. The key is a space that is big enough for the family and offers an environment in which every person feels comfortable.

Sessions are typically fifty minutes to one hour in length, with meetings scheduled weekly. Often, family counseling is short-term. Twelve sessions are a common recommendation; however, the family and therapist can work together to find out what is best for their unique situation.

No matter how many sessions are recommended, the therapist and family will work together to improve communication, navigate specific struggles, identify strengths and weaknesses, and develop skills to foster healthy family interaction for all members of the family.

Sometimes there is a member of the family who does not want to participate in family counseling. In this case, the members who do want to participate can still proceed with the sessions.

Family counseling is flexible, allowing for many different personalities and opinions to come together. This includes a willingness to participate. Everyone who wants to participate is welcome. Having one member who does not want to participate does not need to deter the rest of the family.

If you find that you are the only person who wants to participate, consider starting with individual counseling. This will allow you to work through some things with a counselor and consider ways to encourage your family to participate in family sessions.

Another thing to note is that sometimes a family member cannot come because of scheduling conflicts. That’s okay. The therapist will work with people who are there. If scheduling is a repeated issue, consider talking about it with the therapist to see how to proceed.

Start by learning more about our counseling services and therapists. Explore the site to discover how we can help.

Next, talk to your family. Think about how you want to approach the situation. Would it be better to talk to the family as a whole or to have individual conversations? Would you consider talking to your spouse first and then bringing it up with the kids? Would it be beneficial to have a few individual sessions first?

The way we talk about counseling gives a framework for people. While counseling will not solve all your family problems, offer it as something that can help with a specific issue your family is struggling with.

Talk to trusted friends. Many people utilize therapy. Consider who you can talk to for recommendations. Just make sure that you are only talking to people you trust and that you do not betray any family members by giving out information. Remember, you are working to strengthen family relationships with this process.

We would love to be part of your family’s journey to a better relationship, communication, and connection. Reach out today and we can help connect you with a therapist that will help your family navigate the challenges you are facing.

Get connected with a Christian Counselor
Please contact our reception team at
(469) 333-6163