Pioneering Paths: The Journey of the First Hungarian Psychologist in Dubai


In the vibrant and diverse landscape of the United Arab Emirates, the pioneering spirit has led me to become the first Hungarian psychologist in Dubai. I am embarking on a journey of cultural exploration and mental health. In this blog post, we delve into the unique experiences of being a psychologist as an expat, the challenges faced, and the distinctive aspects of psychotherapeutic work in the Middle East compared to Europe.

Hungarian Psychologist Dubai
Zita Chriszto | Clinical Psychologist | Dubai

The Expat Psychologist

Despite having lived as a Hungarian in Finland, Switzerland and most recently Germany, moving to Dubai was a new challenge. Imagine navigating the bustling streets of Dubai, a city known for its cultural richness and cosmopolitan atmosphere, as a Hungarian psychologist hailing from Europe. This journey as an expat psychologist involves not only adapting to a new cultural setting but also bridging the gap between Eastern and Western perspectives on mental health.

Challenges and Rewards

Being an expat psychologist in Dubai presents both challenges and rewards. The multicultural client base offers a diverse range of experiences, requiring the psychologist to cultivate cultural competence and adapt therapeutic approaches accordingly. Building trust with clients from various backgrounds becomes paramount, emphasizing the importance of cultural sensitivity in the therapeutic alliance.

For further insights into transcultural psychology and global mental health, you can delve into the journal Transcultural Psychiatry, a valuable resource shedding light on the cross-cultural dimensions of psychological well-being.

Hungarian psychologist in dubai, international map
Mapping the intricate threads of our interconnected world by night. Join me on a journey through the global tapestry of minds, where connections transcend borders. In the realm of psychology, the night sky illuminates the shared experiences that bind us all.

Cultural Nuances in Psychotherapeutic Work

The Middle East, with its unique cultural fabric, brings distinct nuances to psychotherapeutic work. Unlike in Europe, where therapeutic methods may be deeply rooted in Western traditions, psychologists in Dubai often integrate approaches that resonate with the cultural values and beliefs prevalent in the region. Understanding the influence of religion, family dynamics, and societal expectations becomes integral to effective therapy.

Holistic Approaches

Psychotherapy in the Middle East often incorporates holistic perspectives, acknowledging the interconnectedness of mind, body, and spirit. The emphasis on holistic well-being aligns with cultural traditions that view mental health as inseparable from physical and spiritual
health. In the therapeutic process I also use the transgenerational perspective, which can lead us to many important realisations. When we construct the narrative of someone’s ancestors, we are obviously stepping back in time, looking at different historical and political eras. In this regard, too, there is a major difference in the therapeutic work, as the ancestors of the patients faced completely different challenges.


The journey as the first Hungarian psychologist in Dubai is not just a personal narrative but a testament to the evolving landscape of mental health in the Middle East. As cultural bridges are built, and therapeutic approaches adapt to diverse perspectives, I contribute to the growing conversation about mental health in this dynamic and multicultural city. The fusion of Eastern and Western philosophies within psychotherapy not only enriches the profession, but also creates a space for transformative healing in the heart of the Middle East.

If you wish to have a psychotherapy session or are looking for a psychiatrist in Dubai, please feel free to contact me over my website We can then make an appointment or I can recommend a colleague.

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Zita Chriszto | Clinical Psychologist
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