Tips for Talking to a Reluctant Family Member About Therapy

Tips for Talking to a Reluctant Family Member About Therapy

Calendar-IconNovember 21, 2022  |  THERAPY
hugging a family member in therapy

However, when a loved one or family member needs therapy, it can be difficult to convince them to seek professional help. Many people are reluctant to pursue therapy or counseling as ignoring the problem often feels easier. 


Both individual and family therapy can help your loved ones in different ways. Behavior health services and family mental health support services are both excellent options for improving mental health, the best choice for you and your loved one comes down to what makes you the most comfortable.  


In this post, we will go over some tips for talking to a reluctant loved one about therapy. Use this article as a guide for handling the difficult emotions that can arise when someone needs to see a therapist, as well as how you can support your loved one through their mental health journey. 


Use These Tips to Help a Loved One Seek Therapy 


Not everyone has positive ideas regarding therapy. It can take a gentle and persuasive conversation with a family member to convince them to seek help.  


So, how do you help convince a reluctant family member to seek therapy? Use the tips below to get the conversation started.  


Lead with Compassion.  


When a loved one is experiencing a mental health crisis, they often experience feelings of isolation and hopelessness.  


Compassion and understanding can help show that you are there to support them, not judge or ridicule their behavior.  


Try to imagine that you are in their situation and the distressing feelings you might have regarding attending therapy.  


Ensure your loved one that the therapy session would be supportive, non-judgmental, and beneficial to their mental health.  


An empathetic, non-blaming attitude can do much to help dispel the worries and fears your loved one may have.  


Offer to do Research to Help them  


When you are struggling with a mental health crisis or trauma, finding the right therapist can feel like another task on top of a laundry list of dreaded chores.  


You can make this process easier for your loved ones by offering to do some research to help them find a therapist that is right for them. 


Be sure to talk to your loved one before finding a therapist. Be sure that they are comfortable with you being involved in the process.  


Have a Conversation About Why You Feel Therapy Would be Useful 


Reinforcing the why of therapy can help your loved one overcome some of their initial fear or anxiety.  


Therapy takes a lot of vulnerability and courage, so your loved one should be aware of how their behavior is affecting their family and themselves. Talk to your loved ones about these issues in a gentle and non-confrontational manner to ensure that they do not feel as if they are under attack.  


If you let your family member know what motivated your interest in therapy and why you think it might be useful, it can help them open up in turn.  


Remind Them that the Therapist is not There to Judge Them 


Therapy can certainly be difficult, but a therapist is never there to judge or condemn their client.  


Many people fear that a therapist will judge and ridicule them for their past actions. Help your loved ones to see that the therapist is there to help them talk about their emotions in a safe environment.  


A therapist is there to help you positively advocate for yourself and work through difficult emotions. This is true for both individual and family therapy. 


Remind Them that Progress May Take Time 


Issues are very unlikely to be resolved in one therapy session.  


Remind your loved one that it will take time and progressive actions to resolve the issues and trauma they are experiencing.  


The goal of therapy is to facilitate positive change to improve emotional and social functioning leading to increased satisfaction with the overall quality of life.   


Remind them that it may take time to address issues and concerns, but the road to recovery starts with the first step. 


Behavioral and Family Mental Health Counseling in Cincinnati at Child Focus 


It can be difficult to convince a reluctant family member to meet with a therapist. This can be especially true concerning family therapy.  


Individuals often fear that they will be judged or blamed for their problems or the problems of their families. 


A gentle conversation with a family member can often be the catalyst that convinces an individual to pursue therapy.  


If you are seeking individual or family therapy in the Cincinnati area, reach out to Child Focus. Child Focus offers behavioral health services and family health services for adults, children, and families in the greater Cincinnati area.  


If you or a loved one are ready to pursue therapy, reach out to Child Focus today. 


Are you happy with the impact Child Focus has made on your life or the lives of your family members? Leave us a review today!