Imago Relationship Therapy

Often classified as a psychodynamic model, Imago Relationship Therapy (IRT) is an integrated model encompassing elements of such disciplines as cognitive, behavioral, object-relations, humanistic, developmental, existential, and depth psychology, as well as systems theory, spirituality, mindfulness, and anthropology. Developed by Harville Hendrix and Helen Hunt, IRT has a unique theoretical foundation that guides its application to couples, individuals, and families. IRT posits that people arrive at committed relationships defensive and wounded from childhood. The wounds are a central part of mate selection. The defenses create emotional distance. Through therapy, which includes learning the theory and the techniques, the couple matures and moves from a reactive relationship to a proactive one. Safety, intimacy, and relaxed joyfulness become the norm. This entry discusses the theory, model, and ...

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