Countertransference and the therapeutic relationship: A cognitive perspective


The current article discusses the potentially inappropriate application of psychodynamic constructs regarding the therapeutic relationship (i.e., transference-countertransference) to cognitive therapy, offering a discussion of the fundamental principles of cognitive therapy that are violated. The therapeutic belief system is defined and offered as an alternative conceptual framework for addressing therapeutic relationship variables in cognitive therapy and the ways in which it is more consistent with the fundamental principles of cognitive therapy are identified and discussed. Finally, application of the therapeutic belief system to the treatment of suicidal patients is provided as a clinical example. Potential implications for treatment and research are noted.

Publication Title

Journal of Cognitive Psychotherapy: An International Quarterly