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Why Marriage and Family Therapy?

In order to answer that question, we must first clarify what MFT is.  MFT refers to a systemic approach to treating individuals, couples, and families. In other words, we understand the power of relationships and use them to help you accomplish YOUR goals. We can do this even when working with only one person. We are also a core mental health profession (1 of 5) and are able to practice at the master’s and PhD levels.

Because We Get Results! MFTs treat a wide range of clinical issues, ranging from those that are relational to depression, anxiety, and other psychological problems. There is also evidence that MFT is more effective than standard individual treatment for a variety of issues, including schizophrenia, mood disorders, alcohol and drug use disorders, conduct disorders, etc.

Choosing a Great Therapist

We know that finding a therapist may feel daunting. We also know that we have extremely talented and capable therapists in Utah to help with a range of individual, couple, and family therapeutic needs.

Here are some tips on finding a great therapist for you:

  1. Find a therapist that is either licensed to practice therapy or under the supervision of a licensed therapist. 
  2. Use sources like Psychology Today and search for MFTs in your area.
  3. Look for key words describing what brings you to therapy. As you read the clinicians’ descriptions, look at how they describe their expertise.
  4. Contact two or three therapists to discuss your needs and their expertise to determine their ability to work with you. Most therapists will happily spend 10-15 minutes on the phone with you to discuss your needs. However, each clinic handles this differently. Many larger clinics with multiple therapists have their therapists listed on the clinic website, with a biography for each therapist that includes their training and specialties.
  5. If you are able to speak with the therapist on the phone prior to your first appointment, get a feel for your ability to work with the therapist. It is important for you to be able to connect with the therapist and have a good personality fit.
  6. Some clinics do not offer the option to talk with your therapist before the first session. If you are unable to talk with your therapist on the phone beforehand, you can still get a good sense of your therapist when you meet with them in person.
  7. Ask your therapist any questions you have about the therapy process and the therapist’s treatment approach. If you would like family members to be involved in treatment, be sure to disclose this.
  8. Discuss any scheduling considerations with the therapist (or receptionist who takes your information) to ensure your schedules are compatible.

If after beginning therapy, you feel there isn’t a good therapeutic fit, don’t give up! You can keep searching. Here are some suggestions:

  • Be open with the therapist about your thoughts and feelings about how therapy is going and what you want to happen.
  • Recognize that progress does take time and there are few quick fixes
  • If you are bringing a child for therapy, let the therapist know about your desires to be involved in treatment and informed of the child’s therapeutic progress.
  • Discuss any concerns you have with therapy or lack of improvement.

If after discussing your concerns with your therapist, you feel the issues remain unresolved, it is appropriate to find a different therapist to work with you. You may ask your therapist for a referral, or you can continue to search.

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UAMFT is an independent professional home for systems-oriented mental health clinicians in Utah! If you want to join and become a UAMFT member, this is where you do it. We hope you will join today.

We need you and your strengths. We are a volunteer organization most of us therapists who are passionate about our profession, our clients, and the future of marriage and family therapy in Utah. This is our professional home. We connect with, support, and learn from each other. Our annual memberships provide high value at a reasonable cost. We look forward to associating with you.



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