Brightside
Behavioral Health

Warwick Main Office

469 Centerville Rd Suite 105
Warwick, RI 02886
Front Office: (401) 773-3685

Johnston Office

1524 Atwood Ave Suite 115
Johnston, RI 02919
Front Office: (401) 425-2231

Marriage & Family Therapist

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Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist (LMFT)

Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist (LMFT) need a master’s degree in psychology, marriage and family therapy, or a related mental health field. Appropriate state credentials and licensing are required.

The job description for a Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist (LMFT) is a professional who is qualified to diagnose and provide family therapy for couples who need help solving marital problems or parenting challenges.

Job responsibilities of the Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist (LMFT) generally provide psychotherapy or counseling sessions in an office setting or online thru TeleHealth & other clinical services for clients with emotional distress. 

Qualifications for this position include licensed professionals with additional training in family therapy and certification as a marriage and family therapist from the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT) and/or the Commission on Accreditation for Marriage & Family Therapy Education (COAMFTE)

Licensed marriage and family therapist (LMFT) is a professional who helps couples, families, and individuals. They may also be called on to mediate disputes between parents, provide support during divorce proceedings, counsel children who have experienced abuse or neglect, and intervene when there is a danger of domestic violence.

Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist (LMFT) Job Duties & Responsibilities

The job duties of a Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist (LMFT) are to provide counseling, psychotherapy, and other therapeutic services to individuals, couples, families, and groups in a variety of settings.

Marriage and family therapists work with couples and families. They bring a family-centered perspective to treatment, even when working with individuals. They evaluate family roles and development, to understand how clients’ families affect their behavioral and mental health.

Licensed Marriage & Family Therapists, LMFTs are usually employed by mental health centers or private practices like Brightside Behavioral Health. They may also work for schools or universities (William James College) as part of the student counseling services.

The job duties and responsibilities of a licensed marriage and family therapist (LMFT) include:

  • Child and adolescent behavioral problems
  • Domestic violence
  • Marital and family conflicts
  • Observe how people interact with one another in the family.
  • Evaluate and resolve relationship problems.
  • Diagnose and treat psychological disorders within a family context.
  • Guide clients through transitional crises such as divorce or death.
  • Highlight problematic relational or behavioral patterns.
  • Replace dysfunctional behaviors with healthy alternatives.
  • Infertility
  • LGBTQ issues

Marriage & Family Therapist Education, Experience & Licensing Requirements

  • Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist (LMFT) Master’s degree in psychology, marriage and family therapy, or a related mental health field.
  • State license or eligibility. Appropriate state credentials and licensing are required.
  • 1 to 3 years of clinical experience are required, which may include internships, externships, or fellowships.
  • Experience with diverse populations preferred.

In order to become a Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist, one must first complete a master’s degree in marriage and family therapy. In some states, this degree is called a master of science in marriage and family therapy. Once the individual has completed the degree, they are eligible to take the Examination for Professional Practice in Psychology (EPPP) in their state.

The EPPP is offered by the Association of State and Provincial Psychology Boards (ASPPB). The exam is administered on a computer at designated testing centers throughout the country. The exam consists of three parts: knowledge, skills, and professional practice.

This includes questions related to psychological theory; assessment methods; therapeutic interventions; research ethics; social justice issues related to mental health care; multicultural considerations; substance abuse concerns; legal issues related to psychology practice; supervision of psychology trainees and interns as well as psychological assistants or aides-in-training.

Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist (LMFT) Skills and Qualifications

A Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist is a mental health professional who provides psychotherapy and other therapeutic services to individuals, couples, families, or groups in order to improve emotional and mental health.

Licensed Marriage and Family Therapists (LMFTs) are mental health professionals with advanced graduate training in the assessment, diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of mental disorders.

In addition to clinical skills in psychotherapy, LMFTs also possess skills in basic counseling skills such as communication skills; interviewing skills; crisis intervention; group therapy; family therapy; child-parent counseling; play therapy for children; assessment of abuse victims for safety planning purposes.

Licensed Marriage & Family therapists (LMFT) use a variety of skills to provide their patients with the most comprehensive care, including:

  • Patience, especially when working with challenging patients or those who may be resistant to treatment.
  • Interpersonal aptitudes, including being able to listen and relate to clients in order to help them.
  • Empathy, to identify with clients’ experiences to help them comprehend what is causing them to feel a certain way.
  • Trustworthiness to keep the information confidential, as clients will tell the psychologist their most personal thoughts and secrets.
  • Verbal communication mastery and the ability to know when to talk and when to listen create safe surroundings for clients.
  • Critical thinking helps the psychologist make a precise and authentic diagnosis to advise appropriate therapy treatment.
  • Building relationships
  • Documentation skills

What does a Licensed Marriage & Family therapists (LMFT) do?

Marriage and family therapists are experts in the field of mental health. They have a clinical degree and are licensed professionals who work with individuals, couples, families, and groups to help them improve their mental health. They do this by providing counseling and therapy services that are tailored to the needs of their clients.

LMFT’s focus on the family as a whole, not just the individual. They help with marital counseling, parenting skills, parenting coordination, and family therapy. Marriage and family therapists also work with children to help them cope with their parent’s divorce or separation.

A marriage and family therapist is different from a psychiatrist in that they do not prescribe medication but instead offer support for patients to get better mentally. They work closely with psychiatrists to provide the best care possible for patients.

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