Feb 172003
Authors: Willow Welter

The mission of CSU’s Center for Family and Couple Therapy is “to serve diverse relationships.”

This means the CFCT serves couples or families seeking their counsel regardless of sexual orientation, gender, ethnicity, age, religion or any other similar qualities.

The center provides Fort Collins residents, CSU students, their significant others and their families with services including couples’ ropes courses, premarital programs, couples’ enrichment programs and new monthly discussions called “Families at Five.”

Families at Five usually features professors from CSU’s Human Development and Family Studies Program. Topics discussed at Families at Five include raising kids, Parental Alienation Syndrome, self esteem and adultery.

“(The coordinators) try to think of topics that the community might wrestle with,” said David MacPhee, a human development and family studies professor who sometimes speaks at Families at Five. “The community benefits by getting some research-based answers to their questions.”

Over half of the clientele at the center are students, said Jacque Martin, a human development and family studies major.

“We concentrate on family and interpersonal relationships,” Martin said. “We have premarital and couple enrichment programs, as well as a satellite center for gay and lesbian couples.”

Melissa Mahosky, a senior Spanish major, said she would go to the CFTC if she were having problems with her boyfriend, who is a CSU alumnus. She also said the couple enhancement program sounded like a good idea for couples who may have lost the excitement.

“Especially couples who have been together for over a year and you’ve done everything there is to do in Fort Collins,” Mahosky said. “I think I’d go there just to get some ideas for new things to do.”

The CFCT also provides help for its visitors in areas like caring for elderly parents, family violence and abuse, school difficulties and stress management plus more.

The next Families at Five discussion will feature MacPhee speaking about Internet affairs. Questions he will attempt to answer include: how prevalent are these Internet affairs? Is cybersex infidelity? How upset do men and women become by their partner’s intimacy in cyberspace?

These seminars are free, and are open to both parents and children. While the adults attend the adult program, children attend the children’s program, designed for ages 3-11.

“I don’t think (Families at Five) will ever be configured so it would appeal to freshman or sophomores,” Macphee said. “It’s more geared toward families; maybe graduate students or people living in student housing.”

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