Psychoanalytic theory, the theory that guides psychoanalysis, was first developed by Sigmund Freud. Psychoanalysis is a therapeutic treatment method founded in the study of the unconscious mind. Freud believed that people could be cured of any number of mental health issues by making conscious their unconscious thoughts and motivations, which provides insights into the root of the issue. The goal of is to release pent-up or repressed emotions and memories to lead the client to catharsis, or healing. Traditionally, psychoanalysis sessions will occur 4–5 times a week, with clients lying on a couch, and the therapist (or analyst) often sitting just behind and out of sight. The client will express their thoughts, dreams and fantasies, which the analyst will examine to help the client gain powerful insights. Think this approach might be right for you? Reach out to one of TherapyDen’s psychoanalytic experts today.

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Psychoanalysis has so many confusing definitions which are worsened by how unethical therapy often depicted. Psychoanalytic therapy, for me, looks at what we are aware of and digs deeper to see what you might not be aware is there, but is affecting us negatively (ex: internalized transphobia, ableism, social or family messages of our values and worth as humans). In therapy I do ask about our pasts and how they are still currently affecting us and, sometimes, how that can be harmful to our health

— Shirley Roseman, Licensed Clinical Social Worker

I offer existential psychotherapy. Understanding your past and how it effects your present allows you to slowly bring change to your current world.

— Amanda Summers, Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor in Vallejo, CA

I practice contemporary psychoanalytic therapy. This means I pay attention to how your past relationships affect the way you learn to regulate and manage emotions in your day-to-day life. Our brains are built through repeated interactions with our earliest relationships and environments, and can be changed through the experience of a new relationship: therapy. This means I consider our work in session as a chance to learn new ways of experiencing your emotions that lead to joy-filled life.

— Connor McClenahan, Psychologist in Los Angeles, CA

In order to heal, you have to truly get to know yourself. Psychoanalytic therapy helps you understand yourself on a more intimate level. By exploring past experiences and relationships, in addition to what is going on for you in the here and now, we can gain greater access to all that is you. This kind of therapy expands your consciousness and opens up worlds of possibility. You will start to connect the dots between past and present, which can be both revelatory and liberating.

— Julia Lehrman, Psychotherapist in San Francisco, CA

We approach therapy through a contemporary psychoanalytic lens to understand what is being communicated through one's behaviors and understand how past experiences are influencing current relationships. As we form our relationships we have found that individuals develop deeper insight, aiding with a deeper understanding of themselves, and experiencing more lasting and sustainable relief.

— Jon Soileau, Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor in Kansas City, MO

Nearly 10 years of clinical experience using Object Relations Psychotherapy.

— Ross Kellogg, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in Los Angeles, CA

I hold a Certificate in Jungian Studies: C.G. Jung Institute, Los Angeles, and am working towards becoming a Certified IAAP Jungian Analyst: C.G. Jung Institute, Zurich, Switzerland. Jungian Analysis/Depth Therapy is a personalized experience of finding our own personal mythology through deep engagement with the unconscious. We explore Dreams, Symbology, Shadow, Creativity, Phenomenon, Images, and your personal associations in connecting to your Psyche’s soulful longings for this life-journey.

— Rebecca Spear, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in Pasadena, CA

I am trained in psychodynamic (also called psychoanalytic) approaches, which focus on deep listening to help you understand what is really going on behind your symptoms. Psychoanalytic therapy is one of the longest-enduring forms of therapy and its effectiveness has been empirically verified.

— Benjamin Wyatt, Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor Associate in Indianapolis, IN

Why psychodynamic/analytic therapy? The here and now psychotherapy relationship opens a stunning window into past, present, and future; into the deep wisdom of the unconscious; and into a creative flexibility that brings more and more wholesomeness, freedom, intimacy, and flourishing of the soul. I have doctoral and postdoctoral training in various contemporary analytic approaches, and I practice from a liberatory, feminist, relational stance.

— Aleisa Myles, Psychologist in Media, PA

Psychoanalytic therapy focuses on understanding your are formed by both your past, and your unconscious processes. This type of therapy puts the patient at the center, and focuses on empathic atunement and listening. Through understanding who we are and how we got here, we can better understand the issues that plague us in our everyday lives. And we can learn to mourn the losses of the past and move forward, choosing a better future.

— James Nole, Counselor in Seattle, WA

The current versions of psychoanalytic therapy all examine how a person’s mind works and affects their view of themselves and the world they live in. One central focus is that unconscious factors affect current relationships and behaviors. Psychoanalysis changed since Freud founded it. I focus on how the ways trauma and attachment are central to understanding how the mind works and impacts current thinking, feeling, and behaving, as in my new book, Traumatic Experiences of Normal Development.

— Carl H. Shubs, Ph.D., Psychologist in Beverly Hills, CA

I work psychoanalytically with patients in order to more deeply explore and understand their internal world. Together we can create language for hidden, blocked, 'unthinkable' thoughts; name and reflect on unconscious conflicts; work through dreams; and build resilience.

— Sarah Farnsworth, Psychoanalyst in Los Angeles, CA

After graduate school, I completed two years of advanced clinical training in psychoanalytic psychotherapy with the Chicago Center for Psychoanalysis in 2015. Prior to that, I participated in the fellowship program with the Chicago Psychoanalytic Institute (2010-2011) and the fellowship program with the Chicago Center for Psychoanalysis (2011-2013).

— Sara Todd, Licensed Clinical Social Worker in Madison, WI

I was introduced to modern psychoanalysis through Naropa University, and have continued to deepen with ongoing studies at The Center for Modern Psychoanalytic Studies in Manhattan, NY.

— Grace Ballard, Sex Therapist in New York, NY