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Research on Imago Relationship Therapy

I worked with hundreds of couples in private practice and thousand more in workshops and seminars. Out of my research and clinical observations, I gradually developed a theory of marriage counseling called Imago Relationship Therapy.

I brought together depth psychology, the behavioral sciences, the western spiritual traditions, and added some elements of Transactional Analysis, Gestalt psychology, systems theory, and cognitive therapy.

In my view, each of these schools of thought made a unique and important contribution to the understanding of the psychology of the individual, but it was when they were all brought together in new syntheses that they illuminated the mystery of love relationships. “

Harville Hendrix, PhD

First Clinical Trial

IRI recently received a grant to conduct the first clinical trial of Imago Relationship Therapy (IRT). Led by a principal investigator and conducted by Certified Clinical Instructors, the trial will follow approximately 30 couples and a control group and measure their progress before, during and after receiving Imago Therapy.

We expect the results of this trial will support the preliminary results of two previous studies and empirically prove that Imago Relationship Therapy is among the most effective methods known for treating couples.

Papers on Imago Research and Theory

Many research projects have demonstrated the effectiveness of Imago Relationship Therapy. We continue to be active in creating new research, and incorporating the latest developments in psychology into how Imago provides relationship help.

Please download our papers summarizing Imago research and theory below:

Author Subject Journal and Link
Theresa A. Beeton, PhD Comprehensive summary of Imago Research Download
 M.T. Hannah, W. Luquet, J. McCormack  COMPASS as a measure of the efficacy of couples therapy  The American Journal of Family Psychotherapy
 Harville Hendrix, PhD  Development of Imago Theory Imago Journal
 D. Feldman, G.B. Kahn  The Integration of Relationship-Focused Group Therapy with Couples Treatment  International Journal of Group Psychotherapy
 Wendy Lawson  Improving Couple Communication through The Imago Getting the Love You Want Workshop for Couples  Download
Kimberly R. Flemke, Howard Protinski  Imago and EMDR  Journal of Family Psychotherapy 
 M. McMahon Applying Stolorow’s Theory of Intersubjectivity to Hendrix’s Imago Techniques  Smith College Studies in Social Work
 C.A. Robbins  ADHD Couple and Family Relationships: Enhancing Communications and Understanding through Imago Relationship Therapy  Journal of Clinical Psychology
 E.S. Slate, C. Peterson, E. Soucar  “Discovering Imago Relationship Therapy” – A Comment  Psychotherapy Vol. 37
 J. Zielinski Discovering Imago Relationship Therapy  Psychotherapy Vol. 36
 J. Zielinski An Imago Reply Psychotherapy Vol. 37


Books on Imago Theory

Imago -Perspectives in Theory (Can be purchased in the ImagoShop)

Hendrix, Hunt, Luquet, Hannah

Offers an overview of the highly successful Imago Relationship Therapy (IRT) and the relationship of IRT with preceding schools of thought such as psychoanalytic theory, family systems theories, affect theory, and self-psychology

Short-Term Couples Therapy, Second Edition: The Imago Model in Action

Wade Luquet, PhD

Luquet sets out a standardized approach to delivering Imago Therapy in 6 sessions, and provides results from research which demonstrates this model’s effectiveness.