Research Paper: Counseling Family Counseling Approach

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[. . .] The counselor has a key role in facilitating families to achieve change hence he is the 'hero' of the change story. Having said that, this hero requires a suitable entry as well as exit point. The counselor needs to motivate change at one point and to motivate stability at the other. It is much more difficult to motivate and help bring change than saying this. The counselor's first job is to listen to the family members and their problems and then to study the family system. Often unsaid facts are more critical as well as true than the stated facts. The conflicts can only be solved by proper counseling that is based on true facts. The counselor finds how much attached are the family members or the current system, which system is better for the family and how to change the family's existing system (Colapinto, 1991). The counselor sets attainable goals for family with the support of family. There is always a room left for the adjustment in the approach so that as the things proceed, more productive techniques can be used. Hence the role of counselor in family change process is dynamic and he needs to move around in the system for the purpose of understanding, breaking stereotypes, and nurturing the development of productive norms and beliefs.

Conclusion

The structural family counseling approach aims to understand and resolve family conflicts. This approach is effective among spouses as well as children and siblings. The approach revolves around restructuring of family systems so that the stereotypes are broken and the family can live according to supportive rules and lives in a healthy happier environment. The role of counselor is critical in this approach and he needs to help the family become self-relying in conflict resolution and prevention. The key is to ask the family about the details of the conflict in private and in front of other members and also to observe them closely to find the root cause of the problem (Bertalanffy, 1972).

Part 2: A Personal Integration Of Counseling Approach

Often it takes long to recognize the need for counseling. I personally feel that a man is equipped with mind and heart to be able to think, feel and decide him in the situations he faces. However, there are times when our experience or knowledge is not enough to support effective decision making. Although no one can understand us and the situation we are in better than us yet the situations can often be generalized. The experienced researchers and counselors have devised counseling theories thus that can be used in variety of situations.

I am a fan of using scientific approaches in daily life operations and decision making. Thus the structural and scientific approaches seem logical and workable to me. The structural approach to family counseling is not a blind shot (Colapinto, 1991). It is a step-by-step process of knowing and solving issues. I have often observed that people look for solutions that would logically not suit them. For example, often people see that there are families that get settled as they become more settled economically. Hence they blindly seek to become wealthy because they believe if money works for one family, probably it is also the solution for them. But the reality is that every family is different from other just like individuals are different. Thus, money or anything else can bring happiness for one family and conflicts for the other. It is the understanding, love and care behind the relationship that makes things easy for them. Hence, I believe that it is very important as well as necessary to identify the actual conflict and the roots of it. The counselor should make sure that he is looking in the right direction. He is like a surgeon who cannot take the risk of operating the wrong organ since it can make the situation even worse (Finding a Therapist Who Can Help You Heal, 2013).

Need for Change

Being a researcher and interested to become a consultant at some point in my life, I see my family issues with a counselor's eye too. I also believe that the structural approach to family counseling is comparatively more productive. This is because, as time passes, things change both within the family and in the environment. New family members join and the old ones get experienced and aged too. With this changing family dynamics, one cannot rely on the old set rules of not watching TV at all, avoiding some kids in the street and playing with others, not letting girls go out late etc. Rather, with time it needs to update the family rules and allow more autonomy to the growing kids and to share the responsibility of the elders of family. This restructuring is not easy in my view due to two main reasons. The elders resist sharing their responsibilities because they feel power and control in doing things hence they won't easily let share their burden of responsibilities. Secondly, the elders also do not easily like to allow youth do what they want. The ice can be broken using few structured steps. First, the family head should be made to realize that with time, it has become impossible to live in a cage without interaction with almost every kind of people. Therefore, while it cannot be avoided to meet people, the youth can be equipped with the values and principles so that they know how to behave and to remain unspoiled while moving in the society. I believe that with their wisdom and life experiences, the elders finally know that empowering youth and trusting them is necessary hence they will comply with the idea of destructuralization of the family system.

Challenges

In my observation, besides the elders of family, the society and people around may also dislike seeing us change. In my personal counseling career, I will help people realize that they should give due consideration to society but should not abstain from a positive growth just because the society is not ready or does not approve of the change process. My focus will be in telling families that there is always the first family adopting positive behaviors and then the society follows. I expect many cases of split families and fighting parents that I will be dealing with in my counseling career. My advice to such families will be to come out of their false egos and instead of blaming each other; they should sort out the problem and solve it along with their kids so that they know what the children want too besides taking a decision and them. The people around might think that the parents are incapable and cannot solve their problems yet I will help them pursue structuralize their family to uproot the causes of conflicts rather than letting them spread and penetrate.

Support

I expect that the most affected members of the family from the conflict are the ones that can be most supportive. They help promote and bring change in the family set up. In case of a violent husband, the wife can be more supportive to bring structural changes in family system and in case of problematic child; both the parents are expected to support change. In any way, I will be looking for the most resisting and most supporting parties in the families so that I can focus my counseling energies accordingly. However, I will not forget that whatever I do, the family members will trust me less than their family members hence I need to never show disrespect or doubt for any of the family members. Trusting them will be very helpful so that they do not doubt my professional sincerity.

Conclusion

It is never easy to deal with conflicts. It is even more difficult to admit as a family that we are failing or unable to solve our problems at home. However, the family members often need to take a bold step of reviewing and changing their family system. It often requires and external helping hand of an expert or a counselor. I would love to save families from breaking apart thus I want to be a family counselor and thus I will adopt structural approach to family counseling. It involves digging deep to find root causes of conflicts and to eliminate them by changing family system and updating revising rules. I do expect a lot of resistance from inside and outside family yet I believe that structural approach is mostly most successful. It is one of the earliest and effective approaches. Reforming families seems to be as challenging as reforming organizations but I hope proper knowledge and experience will help solve family conflicts successfully.

References

Bertalanffy, V., L. (1972). "The history and status of general systems theory." Academy of Management Journal, 15(4), 407-426

Colapinto, J. (1991). "Structural family therapy." Handbook of family therapy, 2

Czaja, S.J., Eisdorfer, C., & Schulz, R. (2006). "The Role of Family Functioning… [END OF PREVIEW]

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Counseling Family Counseling Approach.  (2013, July 9).  Retrieved April 18, 2019, from https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/counseling-family-approach/5301342

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