Transference wife with Therapist

By Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW

Q. My wife is ready to leave myself and 3 kids after 12 years of happy marriage for her female Therepist. She has been physical/sexual with said Therapist. She seems in turmoil with her feelings and has no history of homosexual tendencies. Can transference be dispelled? What are the odds this is “real”? HELP! HELP! HELP! HELP! HELP! HELP!

A. Developing feelings of love towards your therapist is not unusual, becoming lovers is. The client-therapist relationship should have ended long before they became lovers. It’s the therapist’s moral obligation to do so. My recommendation is for your wife to immediately end her therapeutic relationship with her therapist and enter into a new relationship with another therapist. I also would recommend your wife; place her relationship with her therapist-lover, on hold. If they truly love each other then their relationship can withstand a few months apart. The two relationships are hopelessly confused. Where does the lover begin and the therapist end? In stark reality, your wife has very much to lose (her long running marriage) and nothing to gain by quickly moving forward into a relationship with her new lover. Let your wife decide. What she is doing does happen but it is always wrong, wrong because what she feels is massive confusion between feelings for her therapist and those of her lover. She desperately needs a new therapist. Good luck and please keep me informed.

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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 29 Dec 2005

APA Reference
Randle, K. (2006). Transference wife with Therapist. Psych Central. Retrieved on December 23, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2005/12/29/transference-wife-with-therapist/