22 Jul Imago Couples Therapy
It might be difficult to determine whether a therapist is capable and what type of couples therapy will work best for you when you are looking for a therapist. It is good advice to seek out a therapist who has had extensive training in a particular couple’s treatment technique, such as Imago Therapy. Finding a therapist who has had considerable training in a specific couple’s treatment method, such as Imago Therapy, is advised.
The Core Idea of Imago Therapy
The core idea of Imago Therapy is that people frequently marry the partner they believe will resolve their own childhood issues—a partner who, paradoxically, frequently makes those issues worse until the two learn to communicate.
The Latin word for “image” is “imago.” Imago is a term used primarily in Imago Relationship Therapy to describe an unconscious, idealized concept of familiar love that a person develops from childhood and retains into maturity. The early encounters with one’s parents or other prominent people in early childhood play a major role in the development of the imago. A child will acquire particular actions or “survival patterns” (either by expressing or blocking personality traits) in order to get love and be safe because of their unique conception of what love is.
The core idea of Imago Relationship Therapy applies to all of your close connections, making it a SAFE approach to examine and comprehend all of your relationships. To better understand who you are and how your past experiences have either pushed you forward or held you back, it can also be helpful to hold a mirror up to your own self. Relationship therapy with the Imago method is certainly active labour! The relationship and each partner require work from both parties.
Mirroring, validation and empathy in the “Couples Dialogue”
The key component of Imago Relationship Therapy is the deliberate discussion approach. The speaking and listening strategies used in this organized dialogue help with contingent communication. When one partner expresses vulnerability, contingent communication happens when that partner is validated and shows empathy in return.
Mirroring is the initial stage of deliberate dialogue, and it entails repeating your partner’s (the Sender’s) words until both parties are aware of and fully comprehend the Sender’s expressions.
The partner who is listening (the Receiver) summarizes and conveys comprehension of the issues the Sender mentioned during the validation phase. Importantly, even if the Receiver disagrees with the Sender’s experience, the Receiver must also explain why it makes sense.
The dialogue process ends with demonstrating empathy, which encourages each party to make an effort to understand the experience in issue from the perspective of the other.
While decreasing one’s emotional barriers can lead to recurrent pain in other situations, it can also foster the growth of incredibly close relationships in a therapeutic environment. This kind of in-depth communication is encouraged by the Imago dialogue, which also teaches couples how to engage in it until it becomes second nature.
Who should use Imago Relationship Therapy?
For individuals and couples who wish to have more aware, connected relationships with lots of open and honest conversation, Imago Therapy is a good choice. Most couples are suitable for Imago Couples Counselling. It includes all types of couples, from those who are dating and getting ready for marriage to those who have been together for a long time. This includes in particular people who are committed to a significant other in a long-term relationship.
Who should not use Imago Relationship Therapy?
Imago therapy has some drawbacks. Although it aids in mutual understanding and the restoration of lost love, it might not be appropriate for couples that engage in substance addiction, problem gambling, domestic abuse, etc. Once these problems are handled, imago therapy might be effective.
What are the 5 processes of Imago?
- Re-imagining: Regaining a favourable perception of your relationship.
- Recommitting: Many Imago Therapists will ask you to commit to 12 weeks without making any mention of separation or divorce because doing so destabilizes the stability of a partnership. Without safety and commitment, it’s challenging to connect deeply.
- Re-visioning: To know what you are aiming for, you will build a common vision of your perfect partnership.
- Restructuring Frustrations: You need to mend your old wounds in order to have healthy love. As necessary, you’ll use the conversation to revisit some of the more serious injuries caused by your partner. Additionally, you’ll use it to deal with fresh conflicts as they appear.
- Rekindling the romance: You’ll learn what makes each other loved and cared about.