1st Edition

Self-in-Relationship Psychotherapy A Complete Clinical Guide to Theory and Practice

By Augustine Meier, Micheline Boivin Copyright 2023
    308 Pages 2 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    308 Pages 2 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    In this innovative book, the authors set out their theory of Self-in-Relationship Psychotherapy (SIRP), advocating for the integration of relational, self, and physical intimacy needs in the conceptualization and treatment of psychological problems, placing human needs at the center of treatment.

    This marks a shift in how psychological and relational problems are understood, currently being perceived in terms of affects, cognitive processes and behaviors. Using numerous illustrations from their own clinical practice, Meier and Boivin contend that this understanding overlooks the pivotal role that needs play in all aspects of peoples’ personal lives and relationships. Children, adolescents, and adults do not live primarily from feelings and thoughts, but from basic psychological and relational, needs such as wanting to be in a meaningful relationship, having the autonomy and freedom to make decisions about their lives, experiencing being competent, being regarded as a significant and important person, and experiencing emotional, intimate, and sensual and/or sexual connections. By taking such an approach this book stands out among other books on psychotherapy theories.

    Authored by two seasoned psychologists who have provided therapeutic services to children, adolescents, and adults for 40 years, this book comprises the foundational theory for practicing Self-in-Relationship Psychotherapy, making it of interest to graduate students, clinicians in training, and practicing psychologists, social workers, and psychotherapists alike.

    Part I: Theoretical Aspects  1. Theoretical Context  2. Relational, Self and Physical Intimacy Needs: A Review  3. Self-in-Relationship Psychotherapy  Part II: Assessment and Conceptualization  4. Assessment Procedures and Psychodynamic Case Formulation  5. Self-in-Relationship Psychotherapy Assessment Form  6. Application of the SIRP Assessment Form - The Case of Colleen  Part III: Psychotherapy Process  7. Psychotherapy Goals, Processes and Techniques  8. Working with Unmet Core Needs in Psychotherapy  9. Relationship and Self Issues and their Underlying Unmet Needs  10. Gloria - The Pursuit of Individuality 


    Augustine Meier is a certified clinical psychologist, individual, couple, and family therapist, researcher, author, and professor Emeritus at Saint Paul University, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. He is the founder of the Institute for Self-in-Relationship Psychotherapy.

    Micheline Boivin is a certified clinical psychologist, child, parent, and family psychotherapist, researcher, and author based in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. She is a board member of the Institute for Self-in-Relationship Psychotherapy.

    'This volume highlights a transtheoretical approach to psychotherapy, most relevant to therapists of all orientations, and deals with the importance of needs in influencing how patients think, feel, and act. At the core of this approach is the role that the satisfaction of a person’s interpersonal and intrapersonal needs plays in psychological well-being. The interventions described are not school-based in nature, and are richly illustrated with clinical material that brings to life key conceptual issues that speak to therapists of varying theoretical orientations.'

    Marvin R. Goldfried is a distinguished professor of Psychology at Stony Brook University, Stony Brook, New York, USA

    'A truly integrative model of psychotherapy from conceptualization through treatment! With illustrative case studies, Dr. Meier and Ms. Boivin’s developmental model of Self in Relationship Psychotherapy goes beyond symptom management, guiding therapists to a deeper understanding of their clients’ presenting issues, enhancing their ability to help make meaningful lasting change. This book will be a frequent reference for our team!'

    Dr. Rebecca Moore is a clinical psychologist and director of the Kanata Psychology and Counselling Centre

    'This is a truly refreshing and remarkable piece of work. The Self-in-Relationship Psychotherapy approach identifies core unmet self, relational and physical intimacy needs as the root of psychological dysfunction. It is a developmental and relational approach to psychotherapy that integrates complex theories to promote an understanding of how early developmental relationships and experiences impact later adult functioning. The theory underlying the approach provides clinicians with an effective lens to conceptualize and treat the most difficult cases presented in therapy. Of the numerous approaches I have learned throughout my career, the Self-in-Relationship Psychotherapy approach has been game changing in my academic, supervision and clinical practice.'

    Shelley Briscoe-Dimock is a clinical professor and supervisor based in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

    'When I started graduate studies in psychotherapy, I was curious about understanding the client’s struggles in-depth whilst having a structure in place that is rooted in theory and is easy to grasp. This book came at the right time, and I can confidently say that it has been extremely helpful in grounding me in addressing clients’ core struggles with a special focus on clients’ core needs. In this way, this book helped me look beyond behavioral challenges and aided me in addressing the heart of the matter in a timely manner. I highly recommend this book, as a must read, to clinicians and to graduate students in psychotherapy.'

    Sogol Kafi is a Ph.D. candidate at Saint Paul University, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada