Discover how Family & Systemic Therapy Can Help

If you have never been to therapy or engaged with a Family and Systemic Therapist before, it can be scary not knowing what to expect.

Here are some FAQs about Williamsroad and Family & Systemic Therapy:

Your trust is paramount to us.

What is Family and Systemic Therapy?

Family and Systemic Therapists view a family as a unique emotional and social system that is deeply interconnected and interdependent. Thus, members of this unique system have the capacity to profoundly influence one another simultaneously. Members of the system can include people living in the home (parents, children, grandparents, foster or adopted children) or outside of the home (grandparents, cousins, teaching staff at a school).

Family and Systemic Therapy aim to assist the family and broader systems by bringing all of the systems to therapy in order to mobilise their own strengths and resources to reduce the pain and suffering of the individual. By bringing all of the systems to therapy, the therapist can observe the interpersonal dynamics in action and provide a safe environment where all members can hear alternative perspectives by having difficult and intimate conversations in order to heal rifts in their relationships.

What can Family and Systemic Therapy help with?

Family and Systemic Therapy is believed to be effective because it targets processes within the ‘system’ that maintain symptoms. If these processes are changed, then all family members can benefit (Bartle Haring, Slesnick & Murnan, 2017). Thus, Family and Systemic Therapy contributes significantly to symptom amelioration and improved client functioning (Miller et al., 2012) for a diverse range of problems. 

Family and Systemic Therapy is especially useful for:

  • Behaviour and mood disorders such as Bipolar and Major Depression
  • Anxiety disorders such as Separation Anxiety, Selective Mutism, Agoraphobia, GAD
  • Trauma and stress related disorders such as PTSD and Complex PTSD
  • Substance-related disorders and addictions
  • Mental illnesses such as Schizophrenia, Borderline Personality Disorder, and eating disorders
  • Neurodevelopmental disorders such as ASD and ADHD
  • Obsessive-Compulsive Disorders such as OCD, Hoarding and Trichotillomania
  • Conversion Disorder
  • Chronic illness and pain management
  • Palliative care

Family and Systemic therapists can also work with larger systems including:

  • Educational systems such as preschool, primary and secondary schools 
  • Public services such as child protection
  • Human health services such as maternal and child health nurses, mental health organisations
  • Community groups such as religious or sports groups
How to get the most out of Family and Systemic Therapy
  • Be prepared
  • Be patient
  • Be curious
  • Trust the process
What if I don’t get along with my Family and Systemic therapist?

That’s OK! Having said that, try and talk things through with your therapist before you decide to stop going to therapy. Being able to talk things through builds the therapeutic relationship which can make for long-lasting changes in your relationships outside of therapy. However, if you still find yourself wanting to seek another Family and Systemic therapist, you can do so by contacting the Williamsroad office.

How long does a session typically go for?

Family and Systemic therapy sessions typically go for 45-60 minutes. Having said that, please speak with your therapist, as it can go for longer depending on your goals for therapy.

How often will I see my Family and Systemic Therapist?

This depends on your goals for therapy and whether you have chosen to go through our Community of Private Practitioners or the Family Therapy Clinic.

How do I cancel/reschedule my appointment?

If you need to cancel or reschedule your appointment, please provide at least 48 hours' notice. Cancellations after this time may incur a charge.

If an appointment with one of our busy Private Practice Practitioners is cancelled with late notice, it is unlikely this gap will be filled. Late cancellations cause our Practitioners to lose income, and other clients needing therapy to lose an opportunity for an appointment.

What are the qualifications of a Family and Systemic Therapist?

Our Community of Private Practice Practitioners are Psychologists, Accredited Mental Health Social Workers and Counsellors. They have advanced training in Family Therapy, including a Masters degree in Family & Systemic Therapy.

What if family members don’t want to participate?

That’s OK! Family and Systemic Therapists are very creative in how they can include family members who don’t want to participate in therapy.

If family members don’t participate, will the Family and Systemic Therapist tell them what was said in the session?

Practitioners are bound by their code of ethics, one of which is confidentiality. Having said that, as each Practitioner is unique, it is important that you talk things through with your therapist so there are no misunderstandings.