What distinguishes Marriage and Family Therapists from other mental health professionals?
A family orientation coupled with rigorous training requirements make Marriage and Family Therapists uniquely qualified to provide mental health services. Family Therapists are trained in various modes of therapy in order to prepare them for work with individuals, families, couples, and groups. The training of MFTs includes live supervision by experienced MFTs, which is unique among the mental health disciplines.
Therapy is Effective
Research indicates that marriage counseling and family counseling, with a licensed Marriage and Family therapist is as effective, and in some cases more effective than standard and/or individual treatments for many mental health problems such as:
- affective (mood) disorders
- adult alcoholism and drug abuse
- adult schizophrenia
- children's conduct disorders
- adolescent drug abuse
- anorexia in young adult women
- childhood autism
- chronic physical illness in adults and children
- marital distress and conflict
- & more.
Short Term Therapy
Marriage and 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 and family therapists is one-on-one with the other half divided between marital/couple and family therapy, or a combination of treatments.
Research shows that marriage and family therapy is a cost-effective, short-term, and results-oriented form of treatment. In a recent study, researchers found that clients report high satisfaction with marriage and family therapies, with significant improvements in emotional and physical health, functioning, and relationships.