"Systemic (Family) Therapy has a broad application to a range of presenting problems and conditions, especially with a well-trained therapist who is able to incorporate a variety of methods within the framework."

validated approaches

It should be no surprise that a therapy that takes full account of the connectedness of people in close relationships and the impact of connected systems (peers, school, work, statutory bodies) tends to be an effective one, particularly since a key component is looking for the resources and building on the support available. In the UK Peter Stratton has taken the lead in examining the evidence for the effectiveness of systemic approaches as well as encouraging research and a general partnership with patients in evaluating outcomes.

Systemic Therapy is flexible and responsive to the situation addressed and through this flexibility as well as the harnessing of helping resources, the period of treatment tends to be shorter and the number of sessions significantly fewer and therefore less expensive than other models.

It is significant also that the model focuses on interaction rather than pathology, on processes that contribute to wellness rather than deficits in functioning. It may be that you are mentally well and healthy, and that the burdens you are carrying are temporarily overwhelming you.

what kinds of concerns might bring you to counselling or therapy?

  • We want to improve family communication - a little more conversation, a little less anger...
  • We want to be more effective in understanding and managing the behaviour of our child or adolescent
  • Family members need help to manage their feelings and moods more effectively
  • We are struggling with issues to do with bereavement and loss
  • We are going through separation or divorce, or other critical transitions, and need to think about this and its impact on the children
  • We have worked hard to create a successful step-family but the strain is tearing us all apart
  • We are trying to supporting family members post-trauma, following serious injury or the aftermath of war
  • We are living with serious and/or chronic physical or mental illness
  • Our role as grandparenting or carers has become complicated
  • There is constant stress or distancing between siblings
  • We are struggling as a couple and can't break the pattern of difficulties

Couples and individuals have found systemic therapy helpful in many aspects of their lives including

  • Couple relationship difficulties
  • Parenting issues
  • Work and career-related stress, including coping with difficult people, organisational change and disciplinary issues
  • Separation and divorce, and co-parenting after divorce
  • Step-family life
  • Living with serious and/or chronic illness
  • The impact of sexual abuse and other trauma

Couples may attend sessions together or individually, or have individual sessions within a series of couple sessions.