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  • Sam DiFranco

The Therapeutic Relationship

In life you have many different relationships that exist. Your first perhaps is the bonding and attachment that occurs between child and mother and father, or caregiver. As you grow you develop other family bonds with brothers, sisters, aunts, uncles etc. And eventually you make friends and playmates with peers near your own age. As you become an adult, romantic relationships and intimate friendships develop, introducing a very dynamic concept of interaction with others. As we all know, relationships are a key element to almost everyone’s lives. Although Maslow’s hierarchy of needs has been discredited to some extent, his placement of “love and belonging” as second to physical needs such as food and shelter, is pretty on point. Many times people come to counseling with relational problems. A person might have a marital discord, he may be suffering from depression and be lashing out at others. Someone may have anxiety that is inhibiting the individual from making friends. Families can get stuck in dysfunctional triangulation. Whatever the cause, relationships play a key role in therapy and why people choose to sign up for introspection of this sort. Given all of the information stated above, it would be safe to assume that when you are attending therapy you are talking about some of these relationships and their problems. So, it is therefore important that the relationship between therapist and client be an integral part of the therapy process. When searching for a therapist many people want to “fit” together. They want to find someone who “get’s them” or that they feel they can relate to. This is ultimately the client’s right, as it should be. Therapy is much more successful when the therapist and client have an emotionally intimate relationship. This may not happen right away, but in time, the most effective therapy includes this deep connection. Coming up in part two of this series… What are things you need to look for in your therapeutic relationship that will encourage success? Stay tuned for more from Affordable Counseling of Brandon and Tampa, and check out our website for more information!

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