Harville Hendrix, Ph.D, is a counselor with more than 30 years experience as an educator and therapist. He helps couples get to the core of the pain and conflict in their relationship. His tools and techniques are called Imago Relationship Therapy. It can help you understand the hidden reason you picked your partner and show you how to heal your relationship.
The Theory Behind Imago
Your Imago, which is a Latin term for 'image,' is essentially a composite picture of the people who most influenced you at an early age. Dr. Hendrix believes that you unconsciously choose a partner, an 'imago match,' who has positive and negative traits similar to your parents. You believe that this partner can help you heal unresolved pain from childhood.
What is Imago Relationship Therapy?
Imago Relationship Therapy is a form of couple counseling that suggests that your marriage is therapy—you become healed not by a counselor but by the relationship itself. Unresolved childhood pain such as abandonment, rejection, smothering, shame and helplessness often resurface in your marriage, which is the core of what is causing the pain and conflict in your relationship. The partner you chose, your 'imago match,' is often the best person to help you heal because he or she is similar to your childhood caretakers in emotionally significant ways.
Published on September 16, 2002