Family therapy is a type of counseling that involves all members of a nuclear family or stepfamily and, in some cases, members of the extended family (e.g., grandparents, cousins, aunts, uncles). The goal of family therapy is to help family members improve communication, solve family problems, understand and handle special family situations (for example, death, serious physical or mental illness, or child and adolescent issues), and create a better functioning home environment. For families with one member who has a serious physical or mental illness, family therapy can educate individuals within the family unit about the illness and work on problems associated with care of the family member. For children and adolescents, family therapy most often is used when the child or adolescent has a mood, anxiety, or personality disorder that impairs their family and social functioning. Other reasons for initiating family therapy might also be a newly created stepfamily, a divorce, or the death of a family member or close friend. Family therapy is also helpful in creating more effective communication patterns if there is a lot of fighting or anger within the home. Families with members from a mixture of racial, cultural, and religious backgrounds, as well as families made up of same-sex couples who are raising children, may also benefit from family therapy in helping to adjust to societal pressures or prejudices unfairly placed upon them.