Marriage and Family Therapists Job Description video

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A growing segment of the mental health profession is Marriage and Family Therapy. Therapists with a masters or doctoral degree in this category evaluate and treat mental and emotional disorders, health and behavioral problems, and relationship issues—all within the context of the family. How does that work? In a variety of ways. Often, a patient seeing a therapist individually, is referred to a marriage and family therapist when it is determined that family dynamics and family life cycle issues such as the birth of a child, or the death of a family member are contributing to a problem. Parents and couples struggling to make family relationships work also can benefit from this kind of therapy. The therapist most often sees couples and whole families together, but may occasionally see individual family members as well. The goal is to help them find better ways to communicate and meet each others’ needs. More than forty states currently license marriage and family therapists, with state examinations, or by a national examination by the American Association of Marriage and Family Therapy regulatory boards. These therapists often come from the ranks of psychologists, psychiatrists, social workers, nurses, pastors and educators. Recognizing how key the family experience is to overall health and well being, they seek additional training to specialize in this important field.

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