A New Way of Thinking
It is important to realize that couples therapy, marriage counseling and marital therapy are all the same. These different names have been used to describe the same process, with the difference often based on which psychotherapy theory is favored by the therapist using the term. Couples therapy is often seen as different from individual psychotherapy because a relationship is the focus of attention, instead of one individual diagnosed with a specific psychological problem.
Couples therapy focuses on the problems existing in the relationship between two people. But, these relationship problems usually involve individual issues as well as relationship conflicts. All changes involve both individual symptoms and changes in interpersonal relationships.
In family counseling, commonly referred to as family therapy, you and some or all of your family members will work with a therapist to examine your family’s dynamics, communication, and ability to solve problems. Your therapist will help you identify issues that contribute to conflict, which may include family rules, roles, parenting disagreements and behavioral patterns. Your family will learn to work through these issues in order to improve family functioning. Family therapy will not only focus on the problems that the family is dealing with, but will also build on the strengths of individual members and the family system. In family counseling, the focus of treatment isn’t just the person, it is the set of relationships in which the person is embedded.