The 'therapeutic alliance' is one of the most important variables of therapy that can determine its success. It is the successful working together of client and therapist towards a common purpose, but its quality can be adversely affected by clients' past experiences.
Therapists are largely responsible for developing this foundation, but clients contribute significantly to the bond as well, even if they are unaware they are doing so. Many clients bring past experiences into therapy. Negative and judgmental encounters with previous therapists can cause clients to be distrusting and fearful in treatment, creating barriers to constructive working alliances."