Can Our Parents Help Us Through Therapy?

The important relationship between adults and their parents

Karin Blak
3 min readFeb 12, 2021


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We don’t often talk about the relationship between adults and their parents, yet this relationship is frequently the foundations of our intimate adult relationships. This connection can also be invaluable when we struggle in life or if we just need a little lift over the inevitable hurtles we might face.

Our parents usually want what is best for us, they want to see us happy. This has probably been their aim right from the moment they knew of our existence. They have known us longer than anyone else and in a different way to other people in our life. Telling them that we are going to therapy can for that reason be a little tricky. We fear they will worry about our need for emotional help, that they will want to know too much about our issue, or that they believe therapy is not going to help us and why waste our money when we can talk with them.

However, our parents have a wealth of knowledge about us and can be invaluable sources of information about our past. While they may be concerned about our need for therapy, it is likely they will cherish the opportunity to help us.

Including our parents in our recovery

Before talking with our parents about our decision to attend therapy, it is worth considering what we need from them and how that need can be satisfied. The reason for this is that parents often want to put things right, so we no longer have to suffer. That means that unless they have specific instructions as to what we want from them, it is easy for them to step back into the role of caring for a child. We are adults and will possibly find this interfering. Though don’t forget, no matter how old we are, we will always be their child.

Think about how they can support us:

Physical comfort

Emotional support

Practical help

Or, do we just need them to know that we have started the therapeutic journey and for them not to worry, we are doing this so we can create a more contented life for ourselves.



Karin Blak

Author of The Essential Companion to Talking Therapy, Watkins Publishing. Therapy, society, relationships, true stories and fiction.