Family Therapist

Provide therapy to strengthen family bonds.

Quick Stats

Salary Range
$24,000 – $72,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Family Therapists do?

Just like you might go see a Therapist if you have a problem you can’t solve and need to talk about, families with issues they can’t fix alone will sometimes go as a whole group to a Family Therapist. As a Family Therapist, you work with the entire family to help them deal with existing issues and discover new ways of communicating.

Families come in all sorts of forms: large, small, blood related or not. Family Therapists deal with all types with the end goal always to help the different members strengthen their relationships and the overall family structure.

Your work differs from that of a traditional Therapist, as you don’t usually hold sessions with just one person. Instead, you bring in everyone involved in the conflict. While this might seem overwhelming to deal with everyone’s opinion at once, it’s important to get everyone in the same room talking things out and letting the others in the family know what they are feeling.

Your type of therapy also differs from more traditional therapy in what you discuss. You don’t spend a lot of time dealing with the internal issues each individual member has; instead, you concentrate on improving the communication and interactions between family members. You might do this by having the family role play ways to end conflicts, or have individuals answer questions about how different emotional responses make them feel.

In a sense, you help people learn how to fight fair. Your goal is to have your clients leave with an understanding of how to talk and disagree with one another in positive ways.

Should I be a Family Therapist?

You should have a master's degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Reliable: You can always be counted on to do a good job.
  • Helpful: You always keep an eye out for what other people need.
  • Calm Under Pressure: You keep your cool when dealing with highly stressful situations.

  • Also known as: Couples Therapist, Family Counselor, Play Therapist

    How to become a Family Therapist

    Most Family Therapists have a Master's degree. Start by getting your Bachelor's degree. Chart?chd=s:aaaa9d&chl=||||master%27s+%2868%25%29|doctorate+%2832%25%29&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,0,68
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