Imago Relationship Therapy: At A Glance Guide

Imago Relationship Therapy: At A Glance Guide

Imago Relationship Therapy is a transformative approach to couples counseling that revolves around the concept of ‘imago’ – the Latin word for ‘image’ – referring to an unconscious image of familiar love. What makes Imago therapy particularly interesting is its focus on positive change through understanding the psychological underpinnings of relationship dynamics.

What is Imago Relationship Therapy?

Developed by Dr. Harville Hendrix and Dr. Helen LaKelly Hunt in the 1980s, Imago Relationship Therapy is a form of relationship and couples therapy that focuses on collaboratively healing childhood wounds couples may have brought into their adult relationships. It also facilitates understanding between partners, emphasizing effective communication to restore connection and intimacy.

The Core Concepts of Imago Therapy

Imago Relationship Therapy is grounded on the theory that there is a connection between the frustrations in adult relationships and early childhood experiences. Partners are believed to be unconsciously attracted to each other in order to resolve these unresolved issues. The therapy involves the following core concepts:

  • The Imago Dialogue: A structured way of communication that fosters safety and connection.
  • The Childhood Connection: Understanding how early experiences affect your relationship patterns.
  • The Conscious Relationship: Transitioning from an unconscious to a conscious partnership.

Benefits of Imago Relationship Therapy

Imago therapy can yield numerous benefits for couples who commit to the process. These benefits include:

  • Improved communication skills and deeper understanding.
  • Renewed compassion and empathy for each other.
  • Healing from past wounds and a stronger bond.
  • Greater emotional intimacy and a rekindled romance.

What to Expect During Imago Therapy Sessions

Imago therapy sessions are structured to create a safe environment for both partners. During sessions, therapists guide couples through the Imago Dialogue, enabling them to express their feelings and listen to each other without judgement. This method helps partners move from blame and reactivity to understanding and empathy.

Is Imago Relationship Therapy Right for You?

Imago Relationship Therapy may be beneficial if you and your partner are experiencing persistent conflict, feelings of disconnection, or if you simply want to deepen your relationship. It is suitable for couples of all types and stages, whether married, engaged, or dating.


Who can benefit from Imago Relationship Therapy?

Imago therapy is designed for all couples who want to improve their relationship, regardless of marital status or sexual orientation. It is particularly helpful for those who wish to understand the underlying issues of their conflicts and desire to develop a closer emotional connection.

How long does Imago Therapy typically last?

The length of Imago Therapy can vary depending on the couple’s specific situation, but typically, couples may attend weekly sessions for a few months up to a year.

Can Imago Therapy be done individually?

While Imago Therapy is primarily designed for couples, individuals can also benefit from understanding their relational patterns and preparing for future healthy relationships.

What is the success rate of Imago Relationship Therapy?

Success rates for Imago Therapy are not universally quantified, as success can be subjective and based on individual couple goals. However, many couples report improved communication and relationship satisfaction after undergoing therapy.

How can I find a certified Imago Relationship Therapist?

Visit the Imago Relationships International website to find a certified Imago Therapist. It’s important to choose a therapist who is trained and experienced in the Imago method.