Encyclopedia of Couple and Family Therapy

2019 Edition
| Editors: Jay L. Lebow, Anthony L. Chambers, Douglas C. Breunlin

Alliance Repair in Couple and Family Therapy

  • Jacob Z. GoldsmithEmail author
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-49425-8_556

Synonyms

Therapeutic alliance repair; Working alliance repair; Working relationship repair

Introduction

The working relationship between client(s) and therapist, called the alliance, is one of the powerful common factors in successful psychotherapy (Friedlander et al. 2006). Problems in the alliance, called ruptures, are common and may occur for a variety of reasons. The process of rectifying such a rupture is called alliance repair. Repairs can take a variety of forms, depending on the rupture, but should be executed quickly according to the general guidelines described below.

Theoretical Context

Psychotherapy alliance is the working relationship between client and therapist. Edward Bordin (1979) defined alliance as agreement between client and therapist on the tasks and goals of therapy, in addition to the presence of an interpersonal bond. Agreement on tasks involves a shared understanding (between client(s) and therapist) of what is occurring in the therapy room (e.g., the choice...

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.

References

  1. Bordin, E. S. (1979). The generalizability of the psychoanalytic concept of the working alliance. Psychotherapy: Theory, research & practice, 16(3), 252.Google Scholar
  2. Friedlander, M., Escudero, V., & Heatherington, L. (2006). Therapeutic alliances in couple and family therapy: An empirically informed guide to practice. Washington, DC: APA Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Pinsof, W. M., & Catherall, D. R. (1986). The integrative psychotherapy alliance: Family, couple and individual therapy scales*. Journal of Marital and Family Therapy, 12, 137–151.  https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1752-0606.1986.tb01631.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Safran, J. D., Muran, J. C., & Eubanks-Carter, C. (2011). Repairing alliance ruptures. Psychotherapy, 48(1), 80–87.PubMedCrossRefPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  5. Safran, J. D., & Muran, J. C. (2000). Negotiating the therapeutic alliance: A relational treatment guide. New York: Guilford.Google Scholar
  6. Stiles, W. B., & Goldsmith, J. Z. (2010). The alliance over time. In J. Muran, J. P. Barber, J. Muran, & J. P. Barber (Eds.), The therapeutic alliance: An evidence-based guide to practice (pp. 44–62). New York: Guilford.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The Family Institute at Northwestern UniversityEvanstonUSA

Section editors and affiliations

  • Rachel M. Diamond
    • 1
  1. 1.University of Saint JosephWest HartfordUSA