The late great comedian George Burns once quipped, “Happiness is having a large, loving, caring, close-knit family…in another city.” While we chuckle at this relatable sentiment, the truth is there’s a reason it’s so relatable. Families are complicated, and family relationships can be challenging and complex. While there is no such thing as the perfect family, it is possible to work on things and focus on strengthening family bonds through family counseling.
At Simi Psychological Group, we have a team of highly skilled psychologists in Thousand Oaks ready to help you navigate a variety of situations where family counseling is most effective.
But what is family counseling and who is it for? Below you’ll find the Who, What, Where, When, and Why’s that shed light on this specialized form of treatment.
“This is my family. I found it all on my own. It’s little, and broken, but still good. Yeah. Still good.” –Stitch
As the name implies, family therapy consists of any combination of family members, including but not limited to parents, kids, siblings, grandparents, aunts, uncles, blended families, or even close friends whom you consider “family.” You don’t need to live in the same household to participate in family therapy, and in fact, thanks to the rise in telehealth, even members of the family who live far away from one another can participate. Our psychologists in Thousand Oaks offer family therapy services in person as well as online. Essentially, anyone you consider family can participate in family counseling.
“There are no individuals in the world, only fragments of families.”
Family counseling (or family therapy–the terms are often interchangeable) is a specialized form of talk therapy that focuses on improving relationships and interactions among members. It is based on the concept of systems theory– the idea that individuals cannot be understood or healed in a vacuum because they’re part of a larger “system,” that of the family unit. What effects one effects all.
If you’ve ever thrown a pebble into a body of water and observed the ripple effect, you have the premise of systems theory. Family therapists and psychologists help you and your loved ones better understand the ways in which you are all interacting and the ways in which you impact one another.
By addressing such things as healthy communication, appropriate expression of emotions, boundaries, and healthy coping skills, you and your family will learn how to not only get along better but to love and appreciate one another even more.
“Feelings of worth can flourish only in an atmosphere where individual differences are appreciated, mistakes are tolerated, communication is open, and rules are flexible – the kind of atmosphere that is found in a nurturing family.” -Virginia Satire
If you’re looking for family counseling near you, we’ve got you covered. Simi Psychological Group was founded to serve a great need in the Simi Valley community. As we’ve spent time in this town and gotten to know its residents we have recognized that it’s a really tight-knit community. We know how dedicated the people who live here are to building one another up and helping their community grow.
Our psychologists in Thousand Oaks are specifically trained in the area of family therapy and understand the intricate dynamics that make up a family. We’re able to offer our services both in person as well as through telehealth if online therapy better suits the needs of your family.
“What makes a family is neither the absence of tragedy nor the ability to hide from misfortune, but the courage to overcome it and, from that broken past, write a new beginning.” – Author: Steve Pemberton
Family therapy is an effective tool for those times in life when things are especially challenging, as well as those moments when things just need a little bit of tweaking to get back on course. Because family counseling focuses on the family as a whole, the goal is to explore ways in which you and your loved ones are getting stuck and what is getting in the way of living your best lives.
Some of the ways that might happen include examining your family’s ability to solve problems and express thoughts and emotions in a productive manner, exploring and understanding the roles you each play within the family, discussing rules within the family – both spoken and unspoken, and identifying your family’s strengths and areas for growth.
“Families are the compass that guides us. They are the inspiration to reach greater heights and our comfort when we occasionally falter.” – Brad Henry
Family counseling is effective and appropriate for issues including but not limited to:
- Life transitions that impact the family, such as moving, deployment, aging parents or grandparents, kids going away to college or young adult pursuits, or similar changes within the family that are outside the norm or daily routine.
- Grief and loss that may include the death of a loved one, or the loss of a primary caregiver through incarceration, deployment, or illness.
- Changes in the family unit such as separation, divorce, remarriage, and blended families.
- Addressing conflict within the family and learning conflict resolution skills and behavioral intervention strategies.
- Dealing with mental illness or addiction within the family.
- Understanding and managing neurodivergent members of the family.
- Understanding and supporting family members with an eating disorder.
- Facing trauma within the family.
- Improving stress management skills for all.
“Why Family Therapy … because it deals with family pain.” – Author: Virginia Satir
Why Family Counseling?
The why cannot be any better expressed than in the direct words of renowned family therapist Virgina Satir. Family counseling is about navigating family pain, plain and simple. The ways in which you and your loved ones interact, the ways in which any and all of us interact, are often complicated. Thoughts, feelings, and behaviors are heavily influenced by a myriad of things– biology, society, personal experiences, genetics, and family histories. You are always communicating something, whether intended or not, and even when you have the best of intentions, “The message sent is not always the message received” ( Virginia Satir).
Let’s face it, life moves fast and is often unpredictable and overwhelming. If it’s not a call from your child’s school or coming home to a withdrawn teenager, it’s missing the gym again and having to deal with everything at home.
You know that you and your family are capable of more. That each of you has dreams and passions inside you that are within your grasp. But you also know that life feels a bit like an obstacle course, and working hard to get through the maze is keeping all of you from being the people you want to be.
Our caring psychologists in Thousand Oaks will meet you and your loved ones with compassion and expertise. We are here to help you and your family lives you want and deserve. After all, when it comes to families, in the wise words of one loveable snowman, “Some people are worth melting for.” –Olaf
To learn more about family counseling at Simi Psychological Group, speak with our team of professionals today. Our team of qualified psychologists also offers therapy for trauma, depression, and more! For more information, contact our office at (805) 842-1994.