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Marriage and Family Therapy


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Marriage and Family Therapy

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  • What Is Marriage and Family Therapy?
  • When Its Used
  • What to Expect
  • How It Works
  • What to Look for in a Marriage and Family Therapist
  • See all Therapy Types

What Is Marriage and Family Therapy?

Marriage and Family Therapy (MFT) is a form of psychotherapy that addresses the behaviors of all family members and the way these behaviors affect not only individual family members, but also relationships between family members and the family unit as a whole. As such, treatment is usually divided between time spent on individual therapy and time spent on couple therapy, family therapy, or both, if necessary. MFT may also be referred to as couple and family therapy, couple counseling, marriage counseling, or family counseling.

When It’s Used

The range of physical and psychological problems treated by MFT include marital and couple conflict, parent and child conflict, alcohol and drug abuse, sexual dysfunction, grief , distress, eating disorders and weight issues, children’s behavior problems, and issues with eldercare, such as coping with a parent’s or grandparent’s dementia . MFT practitioners also work with mental- health issues such as a family member’s depression , anxiety , or schizophrenia, and the impact these issues have on the rest of the family.

What to Expect

MFT is normally short-term therapy consisting of an average of 12 solution-focused sessions. More sessions may be required, however, depending on the nature and severity of the problem(s). In couple or marriage counseling, the therapist will begin by meeting with both partners and then spend some time with each individual. In family therapy, the therapist will also begin by meeting with the entire family and then, if appropriate, meet separately with individual family members. The first session is generally for information gathering, so the therapist can learn about the problem that brought you to therapy, get the thoughts of everyone involved, and observe couple/ family dynamics . At the same time, you should be able to get a clear sense of the therapist’s role and competency, the goals of treatment, and any “rules” to be observed in and out of sessions, such as who should attend which sessions and confidentiality of any information shared between and among partners or family members and the therapist. Over time, you will identify individual family roles and behaviors that contribute to conflicts, identify specific challenges, and explore ways to actively resolve issues.

How It Works

While traditional therapy focuses more on the individual, MFT examines how an individual’s behavior affects both the individual and their relationship as part of a couple or family. The theory behind MFT is that regardless of whether a problem appears to be within an individual or within a family, getting other family members involved in the therapeutic process will result in more effective solutions. MFT is goal-oriented and works toward an established end result. In recent years, MFT practitioners and groups have called for expanded approaches to traditional MFT training that incorporate more “real world” practices to integrate other therapies and become more inclusive of non-heterosexual couples and families.

What to Look for in a Marriage and Family Therapist

A licensed marriage and family therapist is a mental health practitioner with a master’s degree or doctoral degree as well as specialized training that includes at least two years or 3,000 clinical hours of experience supervised by a marriage and family therapist. Upon completion of supervised hours, a therapist must also pass a state licensing exam or the Association of Marital and Family Therapy Regulatory Board’s national MFT exam, which is used in most states. In addition to finding a qualified licensed MFT practitioner, it is important to work with someone you and family members trust and feel comfortable working with in a counseling environment .

More on Marriage and Family Therapy

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… plus how to gauge your personal risk factors.

By Scott M. Stanley Ph.D.

Loaded: Coincidences in the Family

The intense emotions and frequent transitions of family life breed coincidences.

By Bernard D. Beitman M.D.


  • American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy

  • Association of Marital and Family Therapy Regulatory Boards

  • Karam EA, Blow AJ, Sprenkle DH, Davis SD. Strengthening the systemic ties that bind: Integrating common factors into marriage and family therapy curricula. Journal of Marital and Family Therapy. April 2015;41(2):136-149.

  • Hudak J and Giammattei SV. Doing family: Decentering heteronormativity in “marriage” and “family” therapy. Critical Topics in Family Therapy. 20 March 2014.

  • Mayo Clinic: Family Therapy. Updated November 8, 2014; accessed December 19, 2016.



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  • What to Look for in a Marriage and Family Therapist
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  • managed file transfer (MFT)

managed file transfer (MFT)

Posted by: Margaret Rouse


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Managed file transfer (MFT) is a type of software used to provide secure internal, external and ad-hoc data transfers through a network. MFT software and products are designed to help organizations meet the increasing security, compliance and operational demands of moving information.

MFT products are built using the FTP network protocol. However, because federal regulations require that MFT products meet strict regulatory compliance standards, they include mechanisms to ensure a higher level of security and help keep information private.

MFT applications offer business automation, along with reporting and non-repudiation . An MFT solution should simplify management and ensure regulatory compliance while supporting all current security standards and methodology, including SSL encryption, X.509 encryption and proxy certificates.

According to Gartner, a well-rounded managed file transfer suite should have four components:

  • A server  for management of all aspects of file transfer: communications channels,  multiple protocols , workflow, provisioning , APIs , etc.
  • A client  for tight server integration.
  • A proxy  to conceal IP address and ports .
  • Plug-ins  to integrate with applications.

Legislation such as the Sarbanes-Oxley Act ( SOX ), Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act ( GLBA ) and the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act ( HIPAA ) specify requirements for information security. A component of the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act, the Safeguards Rule, requires all financial institutions to design, implement and maintain plans for the protection of private information.


This was last updated in March 2017

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– 4 Sep 2012 8:22 AM

As well as dealing with compliance, security and ad-hoc, managed file transfer also encompasses workflow, scheduling and <a href=>Automated File Transfer</a>


– 27 Jun 2016 9:57 PM

MFT is more necessary than ever. Many organizations, such as hospitals, have been slow to adapt and opened themselves up to regulatory fines for failing to protect customer data. Innorix DS large file transfers


– 2 May 2017 5:40 AM

Can you be able to have 1 on 2 fso positioned parallel?



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