Most therapists recognize the power of the past as it is revealed in the way partners respond to each other. The therapist can be baffled by emotionally intense reactions that seem way out of proportion to the moment. Repeated conflict themes also suggest that the ways partners interpret each other’s behavior can only be understood by exploring their individual lived experience. This seminar presents an overview of an object relations approach to working with couples, and describes dynamics that are unique to this clinical approach. You will understand how unfinished business from the past and each partner’s relational past can unfold in patterns and postures that work against intimacy. You will also be able to understand how extreme emotional reactions and black & white thinking create instability and specific relationship problems. The seminar will explain a range of techniques that can help couples acquire new ways of responding to each other and strengthening intimacy. You will also understand how the therapist’s intuition and reaction to partners is an important source of information that allows insight into the core themes and facilitates the partners ability to heal past wounds while forging deeper intimacy.