Modalities of Therapy

The term “modality of therapy” is used to describe which people are present in and involved with the therapy (for example, individual, couple, family, group).  The modality is greatly influenced by the approach of the therapist and the problems being addressed in therapy.  Sometimes, the challenges being faced clearly suggest an appropriate therapeutic modality.  For example, a person who is experiencing distress related to their marriage relationship will often be encouraged to consider couples therapy rather than individual therapy.  On the other hand, sometimes the challenges being faced may seem like a problem that an individual should work on alone, when in reality it is a problem that requires participation of an entire family to reach the goals in a shorter time and with less likelihood of relapse.   

Marriage and Family Therapists are capable of working with individuals in therapy, and many individuals benefit from therapy with an MFT.  However, as the name suggests, MFTs receive special training in working with more than one person in therapy at the same time (couples, families, and social communities).  This training includes knowledge and experience in the areas of relational interactions and family systems that are directly linked to the ability to reach client goals in a more effective way.