If you’ve landed on this page, you may understand that relationships can be the source of great pain.
But what if we told you, it can also be the source of your most profound growth?
The principle behind Imago Relationship Therapy (IRT) is to help both partners relate to one another in healthier, more mindful ways so they can grow as both individuals and partners.
By marrying spiritual philosophies with behavioral and personality theories, our trained therapists can guide couples into unraveling their unconscious patterns that may be leading to dysfunctional behaviors and miscommunication in their relationship.
How did this modality get its unique name?
Well, Imago in Latin translates to “Image,” and in the context of Imago Relationship Therapy, it points to the unconscious image of familiar love that we look for in our romantic partners.
And we’re not talking about those surface level traits, like personality or appearance but rather those under-the-hood characteristics that keep showing up in every partner we meet.
And hint: we may not even be aware of it.
Has anyone ever pointed out that you tend to date the same person over and over again?
Believe it or not, there’s a rhyme and reason for why we keep attracting similar people into our lives.
No, your picker is not broken, you’re actually choosing partners based on the relationship you had with your parents or primary caretakers.
While we may seek love consciously, we unconsciously seek people who are similar to the “imago” or dynamic created in childhood.
Often, we find ourselves with a partner that mirrors both the positive and the negative (sigh) qualities of our parents and other prominent figures in our early lives.
Because of this, we unconsciously behave and communicate in ways to get our unmet needs met and our wounds healed.
The dilemma: we keep trying to get our needs met with a partner who often can’t meet our needs in order to prove to ourselves that we are worthy of getting our needs met (a.k.a. “love”).
Sounds exhausting, right?
But don’t throw in the towel yet!
That’s where Imago Relationship Therapy comes into play.
The work done in Imago Relationship Therapy can help reveal the wounds and experiences that occurred in childhood that have led us to behave in particular ways in relationships.
Once we recognize and acknowledge those wounds and experiences, we can then begin to communicate our needs more effectively to our partners and allow them to show up for us in ways that lead to healing within the relationship.
And vice versa.
*Cue the sigh of relief*
Imago Relationship Therapy helps couples to remove criticism, negativity, and judgment, and to replace those with mirroring, validation, and empathy.
The key ingredients needed for a healthy, thriving relationship.
Couples will learn to communicate in helpful and positive ways that will allow their partner to understand one another’s’ needs.
The work of Imago Therapy is based on re-imagining your partner, re-romanticizing your relationship, restructuring your communication, resolving feelings, and re-visioning your relationship.
Time to break out that vision board!
But how do you sustain these vital changes post-therapy, especially when arguments ensue outside of the therapy room?
Imago Relationship Therapy is an ongoing journey that requires consistent commitment from both partners.
Couples will often continue the “in-session” work outside of session to reinforce new communication and relational patterns.
Just as damaging patterns emerge through repetition, it takes consistent, repeated practice and reinforcement to replace them with new and empowering behaviors.
OUR THERAPY METHODS
The good news is, therapy can successfully help you identify and change underlying thought and behavioral patterns that contribute to your relational and communication problems, and provide you with strategies to decrease discomfort while restoring an overall sense of peace.
To experience true and lasting joy in life, we must heal our underlying trauma and by confronting our fears and learning new ways of relating to ourselves and restoring self-trust and vitality.
See the About Therapy page for a deeper look into this process.
Our evidence-based, scientifically proven interventions are demonstrated by research to be effective for improving relationships and communication.
Through treatment techniques like Imago Relationship Therapy, we can help you take the correct direction in making the lifestyle changes that can allow you to heal and improve your relationships.
Learn more about our empirically based therapy modalities by visiting our Methods page.
WANT TO TALK? SPEAK TO AN IMAGO RELATIONSHIP EXPERT NOW
If you are experiencing unresolved issues in your relationship, we encourage you to contact one of our Imago Relationship therapists for a free consultation any time.