Filial Therapy usually takes about 20 sessions to complete, though it can sometimes be extended up to 30 sessions in more complex circumstances. Filial Therapy is split into five distinct phases:
Engagement and Assessment.This includes an observation of the family playing together and a play session demonstration by the Filial Therapist
Parents/carers receive 1:1 psycho-educational tuition and role play practice experience, with the Filial Therapist, in the four key therapeutic skill areas (Empathic Listening, Child-Centred Play, Limit Setting and Structuring). Dependent of the views and needs of the parents/carers and referrer, these sessions can take place in a formal setting or at home.
Parents/carers then complete special play sessionswith their child under the supervision of the Filial Therapist. Again, these sessions could take place in a formal setting or at home
Parents/carers then complete independent special play sessionswith their child at home. The video recordings of this with the Filial Therapist in supervision sessions to highlight areas of strength and reflect on areas which could be enhanced
Ending. The skills that are learned in Filial Therapy are transferable and it will be important to help the parents/carers to focus on how they can use their new ways of responding to their children in a variety of day to day situations. Often this occurs naturally during the process but is specifically focused on towards the end.