The Benefits of Family Therapy For Depression


By: Shanna Keller, Psychologist Trainee

Battling depression can be a very lonely experience for many people. Low energy, insomnia, and depressed mood often compel a person to stay home, stay in bed, and stay away from others. Unfortunately, this fuels even more negative symptoms of depression, such as isolation, feelings of guilt and worthlessness, and increased negative thoughts.

For this reason, it is important to do whatever we can to counteract the feelings of hopelessness that depression tends to evoke. As a therapist, I can tell you that convincing clients suffering from depression to get out of bed and interact with others can be quite challenging when they lack support. If this has been your experience, or you are witnessing this in a friend or family member, perhaps Family Therapy is a path worth exploring.

Why Choose Family Therapy?

Family Therapy is the focused treatment of our most influential support system. It is designed to help improve the interactions of individuals within the family unit, improve the overall wellness of the family, and change patterns of dysfunction. When it comes to treating symptoms of depression, the need for a healthy support system is critical! Not only will Family Therapy enhance the outcome of the family member’s individual treatment, it will act as a much-needed support outlet for the entire family.

What Should I Expect from Family Therapy?

If you are a depressed family member…

  • You know that the words you hear from others hold a lot of power!
  • You will receive assistance with communicating your experience to those you love.
  • Your family will learn helpful ways of communicating with you about your struggle.
  • You will work on repairing relationships that might have been impacted by the depression.
  • Perhaps most importantly, you will see your support system consistently rally around you during a time you need it most!

If you are the family member of someone battling depression…

  • You will learn how to best love and support your family member through skills focused on healthy family structure, systems, and behaviors that help rather than hurt.
  • You will also learn about the effects of depression through psycho-education, which teaches you truths about depression and corrects any misinformation or fears you might have.
  • Lastly, you will develop new ways to manage your own feelings of helplessness and guilt through coping skills and self-care.

Family Therapy can include two family members or as many members of the family as would be helpful. It can include joint sessions with everyone, or smaller sessions with specific family members. It can be used for short-term support or long-term supplemental treatment. The options are many, and the benefits can be priceless. If you are interested in learning more about Family Therapy through Crosswinds, reach out today.

Crosswinds Counseling is Here To Help You