Ten Reasons to Include Family Therapy in the Initial
Treatment of Children and Adolescents

Practitioners use many different strategies to engage parents early in the treatment process

1. The parent/guardian has an important story to share about the child and his/her
target behaviors.
2. The parent/guardian’s perspective about the child’s behavior affects the child’s
perception about his/her behavior.
3. Family strengths affect the child’s strengths and resources for change.
4. Family limitations also limit the child’s capacity for functioning and growth.
5. Important cultural considerations may only be available through contact with the
6. Commitment of the parent/guardian to changing the child’s target behaviors affects
the degree of change the child will make.
7. The parent/guardian can tell the practitioner how much progress the child has
made and whether target behaviors are improving.
8. The parent/guardian’s behavior can accelerate positive changes in the child
through active participation in treatment.
9. The parent/guardian may sabotage treatment gains unwittingly without input from
the provider.
10. The parent/guardian can reinforce gains made in treatment with input from the

Source: LifeSynch. a Humana company