I have noticed over the years that there are many common misconceptions people have about marriage and family therapists.   I am a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in California, so some of what I am saying may be influenced by my specific experiences.  Here are a few of the things I wish people would understand.  Can you think of any I have missed?

#1 We Only Work With Marriages and Families

This is not true. Marriage and family therapists have unique training and conceptualize problems in a relational context or, in other words, they consider your significant relationships. Marriage and family therapists are qualified to treat individuals, couples, families, children, groups, etc. We just treat them from a family systems perspective.

#2 MFTs Only Work in Private Practices

marriage and family therapy professionalFalse! Marriage and family therapists work in many different settings including:

  • Business consulting
  • Churches
  • Community mental health centers
  • Courts
  • Employee assistance programs
  • Hospitals
  • Inpatient facilities
  • Prisons
  • Private practice
  • Research centers
  • Schools
  • Social service agencies
  • Universities

I am sure there are even more out there. Marriage and family therapists practice in a wide range of environments.

#3 Marriage and Family Therapy is Just a Specialization

This one is not true either. According to the American Association of Marriage and Family Therapists, the US Federal government considers marriage and family therapy to be one of the five core mental health professions. The others are psychiatry, psychology, social work, and psychiatric nursing. Each is considered to be a separate field with a unique treatment approach.

You can find the other half of the list here: http://bit.ly/1UaJ8mN

If you are so inclined, please check me out at http://www.defeatanxietynow.com or http://www.humanbehaviorwhatatrip.com

I would appreciate getting feedback from you.