Parent training is a form of therapy designed for children with emotional and behavioural problems (like anxiety issues, ADHD, oppositional problems and conduct disorder) but where the therapist is mainly working with the parents or carers (as opposed to individual therapy where the therapist is working with the young person). The idea of parent training is not that the parents need to learn how to be better parents, but that for parents to effectively manage some childhood problems that go beyond normal development, they will need more specialised ways of dealing with these issues. Parent training has been around for many years now and very effective techniques have been developed for dealing with these childhood problems, which can produce a very quick and long lasting change. The effects of the parent training can be enhanced by individual therapy with young people, but it is a very effective way of therapy on its own.
Behavioural family therapy is a form of family therapy that has been developed for working with families where there is an adolescent or an adult with substance abuse, conduct problems and other comorbidities (for example having a drug addiction and depression or anxiety as well). This form of therapy involves the person having the problem and involves the family members as well (usually parents, carers or other significant people in case of an adult), as a way of supporting the person with the problem, but also as a way of teaching the family members more effective ways of dealing with the “problematic” person and helping them to reduce the problematic behaviour.
Family training is a form of behavioural family therapy (based on CRAFT – Community Reinforcement Approach and Family Training) where the person with a drug or alcohol problem refuses initially to get involved in therapy, but their addiction is impacting on the family’s wellbeing, so the therapist usually starts by seeing the parents or the spouse of the person with the drug or alcohol problem. The goal of this form of therapy is to help family members use their influence twofold: in effectively helping the person to reduce or stop their drug or alcohol use and in helping them enter treatment.