Relational Therapy

Relational therapy is a therapeutic approach that was founded on the belief that a person must have fulfilling and satisfying relationships with the people around them in order to be emotionally healthy. Relational therapy handles emotional and psychological distress by looking at the client’s patterns of behavior and experiences in interpersonal relationships, taking social factors, such as race, class, culture, and gender, into account. Relational therapy can be useful in the treatment of many issues, but is especially successful when working with individuals seeking to address long-term emotional distress, particularly when that distress related to relationships. Relational therapy will help clients learn skills to create and maintain healthy relationships. Think this approach might be right for you? Reach out to one of TherapyDen’s relational therapy experts today.

Meet the specialists

You are the expert on your own life. I don't do cookie-cutter therapy and each session is led by you, processing the things YOU want to focus on.

— AJ Rich, Associate Marriage & Family Therapist in Los Angeles, CA

As social animals, relationships are the core of our well being. We learn them first in our caregivers' arms, and then through siblings, friends, & others. I have extensive training in relational therapy, using radical transparency in our therapeutic relationship to highlight & strengthen your relational capacities, assisting you to build healthier, stronger, mutually respectful bonds of your own.

— Polly Harrison, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist Intern in Portland, OR

As an MFT, I have experience working with couples in distress and couples just looking to enhance their relationship. I utilize systemic theories to address relational issues.

— Diamond Rodgers, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist

I often work with clients from a relational perspective which means that I look at their patterns of relating to others, and how these patterns often originate from relationships earlier in life. Once people are aware of the patterns they are engaging in, we are able to start working on changing them if needed.

— Ginny Kington, Psychologist in Duluth, GA

Ultimately, my work focuses on relationships. I work with clients in their relationship with others such as their parents, partners, friends, work colleagues and other important people. I work with client in their relationship with themselves such as how they see themselves, how they tell their own story and how they are tending to their own wellbeing. I also work with people in their relationship to their spirituality...what is important to them and what feels life giving right now.

— Emily Stone, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in Austin, TX

Relational Therapy (RT)work identifies, builds, and creates a person's relationships; professional, partner, food, etc. Identifying discord in relationships provides rich context in which to resolve conflicts, develop personal accountability, and improve relationships as a whole. It is crucial to RT that we include race, social class, culture, gender, identity and other factors as we work to alleviate possible symptoms such as anxiety, stress, depression, which leads to low-self esteem & more.

— Brendon Mendoza, Licensed Professional Counselor Associate in Seattle, WA

We are all relational beings seeking to make sense of the ourselves, others and the world. In response, the therapeutic relationship can be used as a vehicle to gain insight, self-compassion and understanding. Slowing down to consider why we (and others) act, believe and think the way we do can result in healthier relationships and boundaries while getting our needs met.

— Olivia Carollo, Clinical Psychologist in Chicago, IL

I am one of a handful of RLT therapists in New York, Massachusetts and New Mexico. I do online sessions in each of these states.

— Jerry Sander, Clinical Social Worker in ,

Relationships matter, including your relationship with your therapist. Our work together will use what happens in therapy as a way of gaining more insight on what is happening in your relationships outside of therapy.

— Bronwyn Shiffer, Clinical Social Worker in Madison, WI

Because I work relationally, it’s my goal that we develop a genuine relationship where we can safely have difficult conversations, have and resolve conflicts, and you feel comfortable experiencing vulnerability and a wide range of emotions from joy to pain. Therapy can create a reparative relational experience that brings you more self-understanding and helps you function with resilience and self-love in your interconnected world.

— Jennifer Alt, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist

Relational therapy sometimes referred to as relational-cultural therapy, is a therapeutic approach based on the idea that mutually satisfying relationships with others are necessary for one’s emotional well-being. This type of psychotherapy takes into account social factors, such as race, class, culture, and gender, and examines the power struggles and other issues that develop as a result of these factors, as well as how they relate to the relationships in a person’s life.

— Susan Stork, Sex Therapist in Baltimore, MD

The relationship you have with your psychotherapist is often indicative of how you relate outside of the therapy office. Similar patterns and projections arise -- we use the therapeutic relationship as a way of exploring your core needs and past traumas, and ultimately as a form of healing.

— Jeffrey Kishner, Mental Health Counselor in , NY

The core foundation of good therapeutic work is a relationship built on warmth, authenticity, and trust, where all parties learn from one another. Our approach pays close attention to what is happening moment-to-moment and explores the ways that we are impacting each other. We know that therapy is incredibly vulnerable and can feel intimidating! Our therapists are not blank slates-knowing about the person you're sharing with and what they stand for makes sharing a little bit easier.

— Kindman & Co. Therapy Practice, Therapist in Los Angeles, CA

Relational psychotherapy, an approach that can help individuals recognize the role relationships play in the shaping of daily experiences, attempts to help people understand patterns appearing in the thoughts and feelings they have toward themselves.

— Adrian Scharfetter, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in SACRAMENTO, CA

As humans, we are relational beings. I believe that what transpires in the therapy room is a unique and valuable exchange that enables a non-judgmental, in the moment discussion of how we are impacting one another.

— Lindsay Anderson, Licensed Professional Counselor Intern in Portland, OR

My therapeutic style is grounded in Relational-Cultural Theory and focused on building a strong therapeutic connection while exploring relationship patterns, relationship- and self-beliefs, improving self-worth, and modeling relationship effectiveness. I have focused my professional training on becoming an expert in trauma-informed, empowering, and multiculturally sensitive psychological care with a highly developed understanding of how gender issues impact interpersonal relationship.

— Jeanine Moreland, Clinical Psychologist in Chicago, IL