Family-Centered Care

I’m searching for an experienced family therapist to help my wife and our two children get along better. There is so much conflict in our household, so much yelling and slamming of doors. We used to have fun together as a family, now we just retreat to our separate rooms and screens. Our youngest used to hug me, now he just tests my limits. I miss the closeness we used to feel as a family. How does your Bethesda, MD counseling practice approach family therapy?

At Emily Cook Therapy, we care about helping your family meet your counseling goals. We’ll help you to reduce conflict, set healthy boundaries, learn new skills for communication and problem solving, engage children and adolescents in determining appropriate consequences for misbehavior, and strengthen your family’s sense of trust and respect in one another. Currently, we offer family therapy for parents and adolescents — and soon, our office will include dedicated space for family therapy and play therapy for children preschool through elementary school.

Family-centered care is the hallmark of our Bethesda, MD therapy practice. The key to providing you with the highest quality family counseling relationship is the sense of trust and partnership we develop between families and our expert therapists. This quote accurately describes the diversity, importance, and conceptualization of family that guides our family therapy services:

Families are big, small, extended, nuclear, multi-generational, with one parent, two parents, and grandparents. We live under one roof or many. A family can be as temporary as a few weeks, as permanent as forever. We become part of a family by birth, adoption, marriage, or from a desire for mutual support. As family members, we nurture, protect, and influence each other. Families are dynamic and are cultures unto themselves, with different values and unique ways of realizing dreams. Together, our families become the source of our rich cultural heritage and spiritual diversity. Each family has strengths and qualities that flow from individual members and from the family as a unit. Our families create neighborhoods, communities, states, and nations.

Developed and adopted by the NM Legislative Young Children’s Continuum and NM Coalition for Children, June 1990.

Family-centered care is guided by the following key principles:

  • Families and professionals work together in the best interest of the child and the family.
  • There is mutual respect for the skills and expertise that each partner — family member and therapist — brings to the therapeutic relationship.
  • Trust is fundamental to successful, positive treatment outcomes.
  • Communication and information sharing are open and objective.
  • There is a willingness to negotiate, and participants make decisions about care together.

Additionally, research on family-centered care in health care, mental health, and community care settings has shown that when health professionals are guided by the following ten components, they are practicing family-centered care:

  1. Acknowledges the family as the constant in a child’s life.
  2. Builds on family strengths.
  3. Supports the child in learning about and participating in his/her care and decision-making.
  4. Honors cultural diversity and family traditions.
  5. Recognizes the importance of community-based services.
  6. Promotes an individual and developmental approach.
  7. Encourages family-to-family and peer support.
  8. Supports youth as they transition to adulthood.
  9. Develops policies, practices, and systems that are family-friendly and family-centered in all settings.
  10. Celebrates successes.

Call us today! Experienced family therapists in Bethesda, MD can help.