North Carolina Family Therapy Center

What is Marriage & Family Therapy?

A family’s patterns of behavior influences the individual and therefore may need to be a part of the treatment plan. In Marriage & Family Therapy, the unit of treatment isn’t just the person – even if only a single person is interviewed – it is the set of relationships in which the person is imbedded.

Marriage & Family Therapy is:

  • brief
  • solution-focused
  • specific, with attainable therapeutic goals
  • designed with the “end in mind.”

Marriage & Family Therapists treat a wide range of serious clinical problems including: depression, marital problems, anxiety, individual psychological problems, and child-parent problems.

Research indicates that Marriage & Family Therapy is as effective, and in some cases more effective than standard and/or individual treatments for many mental health problems such as: adult schizophrenia, affective (mood) disorders, adult alcoholism and drug abuse, children’s conduct disorders, adolescent drug abuse, anorexia in young adult women, childhood autism, chronic physical illness in adults and children, and marital distress and conflict.

Marriage & Family Therapists regularly practice short-term therapy; 12 sessions on average. Nearly 65.6% of the cases are completed within 20 sessions, 87.9% within 50 sessions. Marital/couples therapy (11.5 sessions) and family therapy (9 sessions) both require less time than the average individuated treatment (13 sessions). About half of the treatment provided by Marriage & Family Therapists is one-on-one with the other half divided between marital/couple and family therapy, or a combination of treatments.

Information provided by The American Association for Marriage & Family Therapy www.aamft.org