Changes in Your Children’s Behavior at Home? Family Counseling Can Help
Are there changes in your children’s behavior at home? Family counseling can help.It’s not uncommon for parents to send their child straight to individual counseling when behavioral problems arise, without recognizing the crucial role they play in the solution. By and in large, children are a product of their environments, and, as individuals in a family, we all play a role based on the roles and behaviors of the other family members. It’s impossible to fully understand a person by looking at them individually, because as a family, we function as an integrated, interconnected unit in which psychological functioning is influenced by each and every family member collectively. This is why family counseling can be such a helpful tool in understanding the best ways to parent your child, based on your family’s unique structure.
Family therapy is a form of treatment that views psychological problems and their treatment in terms of the interactions among family members. It has been known to be highly beneficial in treating a number of disorders in children, including anorexia nervosa, drug and alcohol abuse, obesity and overweight, and many other behavioral issues. However, in family therapy, there is no traditional patient singled out – the focus is on relationship patterns and communication amongst family members. Thus, when a child has a behavioral problem, a family therapist is likely to distinguish the child’s difficulties within the larger context of the family system, rather than as a product of his/her own deficits. Instead of blaming any individual member for the problem, a family therapist works instead to help the family interact in new, different ways that may improve functioning.
Behavioral problems like these often emerge in children during times of major life changes, such as divorce, a death or birth in the family, a big move, etc. Major life changes can lead to a change in the family’s current balance, and, in turn, lead to role changes and instability. That’s why it’s important during these times to check in with your child and communicate with them as to what they are thinking and feeling. Wake Forest University looks at how children’s individual stresses escalating into shared family issues due to poor communication. For example, when a child has a disability, they often require special attention from their parents. Other siblings may begin to feel neglected or ignored, and feelings of envy or jealousy toward this special attention can manifest as behavioral trouble at school and angry outbursts at home. On the other hand, these feelings may cause a sense of guilt instead, leading to depression and withdrawal. Either way, without communication, the child’s emotional challenges can grow into a variety of behavioral problems that affect more than just them. That’s why Individual therapy, which helps increase self-awareness and teaches valuable communication skills, is a crucial part of treatment to the whole family. In helping each person learn to express their feelings, as well as encouraging others to listen and look past the behaviors, you can really begin to understand contributing factors.
In family counseling, parents and their children are able to work together with the help of their therapist to learn the tools needed to create a happy, healthy family unit. Because family therapy is a very specialized skill set, and one should seek a therapist who has received both training and credentials qualifying them to perform this type of counseling. Life Balance Therapy can offer your family guidance in trying times, with a compassionate experience for your therapy services that will help you achieve your family therapy goals. See for yourself how our treatment paves the way to a better and happier life, building healthier connections and improved perspectives – schedule a consultation today!