By the time teens come into treatment for an addiction, there’s usually strain within their family relationships. We see it all the time. Parents will bring their teens in for treatment with everyone sitting on pins and needles. Whether the teen comes in willingly or after parents forced them into addiction treatment programs, there are emotions involved. When we identify these kinds of issues, we immediately know structural family therapy is going to be part of the treatment process.
What Is Structural Family Therapy?
When families run into difficulties functioning as a loving unit, some form of intervention becomes necessary. When addiction intervenes in family relationships, it tends to affect the whole family. Of course, the addicted teen enters treatment with a big hill to climb. Just the same, there’s usually collateral damage that has affected other family members, including parents, siblings, and sometimes close friends.
Kids can’t simply walk away from their families. They are still growing up and maturing, necessitating love and support from family. Structural Family Therapy is about repairing bonds and promoting continued support within the family structure.
Dysfunction is a common trait in families where teens are abusing drugs or alcohol. In some cases, the dysfunction creates the addiction while in other cases, the addiction creates the dysfunction. Either way, the best solution for the family could well be a structural family therapy program Los Angeles CA offers.
The emphasis of such programs is to identify the dysfunctional ways the family is interacting. It could be they aren’t interacting at all. Whatever the issues might be, it’s the therapist who’s going to have to play referee and try to bring the family back together. In the following section, we will discuss in detail how a structural family therapy program Los Angeles CA trusts can work.
How Structural Family Therapy Works
In most cases, the client enters treatment with a fractured family. What we see most of the time is a complete breakdown in communication. If family members have lost the ability to communicate, there’s little chance they can move forward without a family therapy program.
A structural family therapy program Los Angeles CA offers is a particular type of family therapy. It generally requires that the therapist jumps in and assumes the role of a concerned family member. In that role, the therapist has to find out where the dysfunction is coming from.
It’s important to know that each family member’s perspective is going to be different. The differences are likely what’s keeping the family from being able to communicate. The therapist’s first endeavor is to get the family to communicate. If provocation is necessary, so be it. Through a question and answer process, the therapist will attempt to peel away animosity by identifying specific feelings and emotions.
While the family members are interacting, the therapist will remain mindful of how family members are transacting among themselves. During key interactions, the therapist will hopefully be able to identify harmful transactions while hidden conflicts become apparent. Once everything is out on the table, the therapist will guide family members towards resolving their own integrated issues. In the end, communication opens the door, and love brings the family back together.
The Treatment Focus at Destinations for Teens
Because our client base is made up of addicted teens, we require a lot of family involvement in the treatment process. Structural family therapy is but one of the tools we use to help turn families from part of the problem to part of the solution. Beyond family therapy, we also offer other important treatment options like:
- Dual diagnosis: mental health focus
- Evidence-based therapies like CBT and DBT
- Holistic treatment options such as yoga therapy
- Inpatient and outpatient treatment options
- A nice menu of aftercare and alumni programs
If your teen has a substance use disorder, they need your support now more than ever. The best way Destinations for Teens can help you put the family back together is with a structural family therapy program. We implore you to let us help you. You can start your child’s journey towards recovery by picking up the phone and calling us at 877.466.0620.