Psychologists and therapists using this approach
What is Imago Relationship Therapy?
Imago Relationship Therapy helps couples learn to reconnect in ways that enhance their romantic relationship or marriage. It purports that the unconscious purpose of a committed partnership is to heal childhood wounds. The word imago is based on the latin word “image”. It teaches that we all hold an unconscious image comprised of the best and worst traits of people that mattered most to us growing up. This unconscious image influences greatly who we choose as mates. As adults, unconsciously, we recreate the most painful dynamics of our childhood with our partner, in order to finally find healing of those early wounds. That’s why many people say things like, “My partner is just like my mom/dad”.
Imago therapy sees committed relationships as the best opportunity for us to grow and heal individually. Conflict is seen as an opportunity for growth and a natural stage in every relationship. The goal of the therapist is to help you understand the unmet needs that are beneath each conflict, and explore what behaviour changes can be made so that the needs of both partners can be met. The therapist provides the tools to make that growth and healing possible, and helps couples move from an disconnected to a connected stage.
How can Imago Relationship Therapy help my relationship or marriage?
Imago Relationship Therapy can teach couples to communicate in a way that respects both partners and deepens intimacy. Imago therapy encourages couples to move away from who is right or wrong. Each person holds equally valid perceptions, and both contribute to the problem in their own way. Finding solutions starts with fully understanding, and validating, each other’s experiences. Then, with the help of the therapist, they explore what next steps each one of them needs to make to improve their relationship.
What happens during an Imago Relationship Therapy Session?
Imago Therapists are experts in guiding you in the process of couples therapy. Each partner will be given equal opportunity to share their thoughts and feelings, while the other partner listens. Imago therapists encourage dialog between the partners that is loving and compassionate in nature. The therapist is a neutral 3rd party who does not take sides. An exception to this is when domestic violence or substance abuse is occurs, in which case the therapist will take a clear stance in service of safety, and may recommend measures such as individual therapy to address the issue.
Why should I seek Couples Therapy now?
Most people face only a couple of “core issues”. Therefore, the same types of conflicts tends to arise over and over again in relationships. When this happens, people can start to wonder if they’ve chosen the “wrong” partner. By seeking couple counselling now, you can try to save what you’ve already built. You can also move forward with a greater sense of understanding, and an ability to have a more loving and fulfilling relationship.