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Systemic family therapy & counselling for families

Private family therapy in London at Schoen Clinic Chelsea

family enjoying time together at home

Families are our first source of support, learning, and love, but sometimes these relationships can become strained. This strain can leave family members feeling angry, isolated or unheard. Through counselling, family members can navigate these challenging times together, aiming to resolve or lessen disputes and conflicts, often emerging stronger from the experience.

If your family needs specialised mental health support, don't hesitate to contact our caring team at Schoen Clinic today.

What is systemic family therapy?

Family therapy is a form of psychotherapy that involves all members of a nuclear or extended family. It's based on the premise that family is a unique social system with its own structure and communication patterns.

The goal of family therapy is to address specific issues affecting the health and functioning of the family. It can help families navigate difficult life transitions, resolve conflicts, and improve communication. It's a collaborative process, with the therapist guiding the family towards healthier dynamics and improved relationships.

Systemic family therapy is a branch of family therapy that views the family as an emotional unit. It's based on the systems theory, which posits that individuals cannot be understood in isolation. Instead, people are best understood in the context of their family system.

What are some common signs it might be time to seek family therapy?

Considering family therapy can be beneficial when certain signs and issues arise within the family dynamic.

Here are some key indicators that it might be time to seek the help of a family therapist:

  • Persistent communication issues: Difficulty communicating effectively often leads to misunderstandings, arguments, or a complete breakdown in communication.

  • Frequent conflicts: When conflicts and disagreements become a regular occurrence and seem unresolvable, it may be a sign that external help is needed.

  • Emotional distance: If there is a noticeable emotional distance or disconnection between family members, leading to feelings of isolation or neglect.

  • Changes in behaviour: Significant changes in behaviour, mood, or personality of one or more family members, such as increased anger, withdrawal, or anxiety.

  • Life transitions: Major life changes, such as divorce, remarriage, relocation, or the addition of a new family member, can cause stress and disrupt family harmony.

  • Mental health issues: Presence of mental health issues like depression, anxiety, or other disorders in one or more family members impacts the overall family well-being.

  • Parenting challenges: Difficulties in parenting, including disagreements on parenting styles or dealing with a child’s behavioural problems.

  • Grief and loss: Coping with the loss of a loved one or a significant trauma that affects the whole family.

  • Blended family issues: Challenges in blending families, such as children struggling to adjust to new family dynamics or parental conflicts with stepchildren.

  • Intimacy issues: Problems with maintaining emotional and physical intimacy between partners affecting the family unit.

Seeking family therapy can provide a safe space for members to express their feelings, learn healthy communication skills, and work together to resolve conflicts and improve their relationships.

Get in touch with our caring team in London to begin family therapy sessions with one of our mental health specialists

If you're looking for private family therapy in London, please reach out to our caring team at Schoen Clinic Chelsea today. We have appointments available in as little as 24 hours so you can begin treatment with minimal wait.

To access private treatment as swiftly as possible, simply fill out our online pre-screening questionnaire at any time to suit you.

How much do family therapy sessions cost?

The cost of different types of treatment, therapy or support will vary. See our full breakdown of our prices and funding options for more information or specific costs.

What to expect from systemic family therapy: How does it work?

Systemic family therapy is based on several key principles. The most fundamental of these is the idea that the family is a system. This means that the family members are interconnected and interdependent. Changes in one part of the system can affect the entire system.

Here are some of the key principles of systemic family therapy:

  • The family is viewed as a whole, rather than as a collection of individuals.

  • Problems are seen as patterns of behaviour that are maintained by the family system.

  • Change in one part of the system can lead to changes in other parts.

  • The therapist is a neutral observer who helps the family understand and change their patterns of interaction.

  • The focus is on the present and future, rather than the past.

  • The goal is to improve communication and problem-solving within the family system.

In a typical systemic family therapy session, the therapist will work with the entire family to identify patterns of interaction that may be contributing to problems. The therapist will then use various techniques to help the family members understand and change these patterns.

At Schoen Clinic Chelsea, our family therapists provide confidential and non-judgemental support, encouraging all attending family members to express their feelings and have their voices heard.

What techniques are used in systemic family therapy to help families understand and change interaction patterns?

Systemic family therapy employs various techniques to help families understand and change their interaction patterns.

Here are some commonly used family therapy techniques:

  1. Genograms: Creating a visual representation of the family tree that includes information about relationships, conflicts, and significant events. This helps identify patterns and intergenerational issues affecting the family.

  2. Circular questioning: Asking questions that encourage family members to reflect on how their actions impact others and how others’ actions affect them. This technique promotes an understanding of relational dynamics.

  3. Reframing: Changing the way a problem or behaviour is viewed by presenting it in a different context. This helps family members see issues from a new perspective, often reducing blame and increasing empathy.

  4. Enactments: Having family members act out specific situations or conflicts during therapy sessions. This allows the therapist to observe interactions and provide immediate feedback and guidance.

  5. Role-Playing: Encouraging family members to take on each other’s roles to gain insight into their perspectives and feelings. This can foster empathy and improve understanding.

  6. Communication Training: Teaching effective communication skills, such as active listening, “I” statements, and assertiveness, to enhance the way family members interact and resolve conflicts.

  7. Boundary Setting: Helping family members establish healthy boundaries within their relationships. This can involve clarifying roles, responsibilities, and expectations.

  8. Positive feedback and reinforcement: Emphasizing and reinforcing positive behaviours and interactions observed during sessions. This encourages the continuation of constructive patterns.

  9. Task assignments: Giving the family specific tasks or activities to complete between sessions. These tasks are designed to practice new skills, reinforce changes, and address specific issues.

By using these techniques, systemic family therapy aims to help families understand the underlying patterns and dynamics that contribute to their issues. It encourages change by promoting new ways of thinking, interacting, and relating to one another.

Our family therapists in London are here to support you and your loved ones

At Schoen Clinic Chelsea, our team of highly qualified family therapists and counsellors is dedicated to supporting families through their challenges with compassion and expertise. Our professionals are trained in a variety of therapeutic approaches and bring a wealth of experience to their practice, ensuring that each family receives personalised, evidence-based care.

Emma Johnson

Principle Systemic Family Psychotherapist

Emma Johnson

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