If you’ve made it to this blog (welcome!), you may have already learned a bit about Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)—the evidence-based treatment designed for individuals struggling to regulate their emotions and behaviors effectively. At DBT California, we believe that treating the family as a whole exponentially helps with the healing process (and there is plenty of research to back this up!). That’s why we know it’s important to provide DBT skills for family and loved ones.

We understand the significant challenges family members experience when their loved one struggles with emotion dysregulation.

Our Family Skills Training course teaches family members how to more effectively address behavior, change it, and develop a more rewarding and meaningful relationship with their loved one. This course is a mandatory component of our DBT Adolescent (DBT-A) Program. It is also available as a stand-alone resource for family members of individuals struggling with emotional dysregulation, borderline personality disorder (BPD), suicidal ideation, self-harm, substance abuse, impulsive behaviors, and other problems. This course is suitable for parents, grandparents, caregivers, adult siblings, partners, and other close relatives or friends. Whether your loved one is in treatment (with us or elsewhere) or perhaps not in treatment at all, we want to support you now in improving your relationship and setting limits!

Family members are taught skills over the course of 14 virtual group sessions. The course focuses on teaching select DBT skills. These skills include relational mindfulness, behavior management, validation, and other strategies for navigating difficult situations. Parents and loved ones are also assigned a consultant during their time in group. Consultants are trained DBT therapists who provide between-session coaching calls to enhance skills generalization and offer in-the-moment crisis support. Consultants continue to be available to family members even after the conclusion of group for supplemental support and skills maintenance. 

Benefits of participating in our Family Skills Training course include:

  • Increased understanding of emotion dysregulation and BPD, which can increase empathy and provide a sense of validation
  • Education on the biosocial theory, which nonjudgmentally explains the vulnerabilities leading to your loved one’s problematic behaviors   
  • Support to manage burnout in the face of your loved one’s extreme emotions and suffering
  • Being able to speak the same language as your loved one—by learning the same skills you may more readily notice and acknowledge when your loved one uses skills 
  • Learning new ways of coping with your feelings and leading by example to your loved ones
  • Assisting with the process of skills acquisition and generalization for your loved one, which may promote closer relationships
  • Motivating your loved one to build and maintain new and more effective behavioral patterns. If you’re putting in the hard work, they may be more apt to as well!

If this blog post has piqued your interest, you’re in luck—another course is starting soon! We hope you reach out and give us the opportunity to provide DBT skills for you and your family. Interested in learning more or signing up? Email us at info@cbtcalifornia.com or call us at 800-624-1475