This book, written in plain language by an experienced, psychoanalytically-orientated therapist, is aimed at lay readers who wish to understand how couples consciously and unconsciously operate in successful and unsuccessful partnerships. It covers the central concepts involved, illustrated by (disguised) case material. The book will also be invaluable for trainers, trainees, and individual counsellors/psychotherapists wishing to extend their work into a fresh clinical area namely couple therapy. The style is lively and accessible, covering a complete range of couple issues from early union till death.By means of real people's stories it clearly demonstrates how internal and external experiences throughout development from birth to adolescence shape the style, quality, and progress of a committed pair bond. Not all couples require therapy, of course. A careful reading of this book could be sufficient to start off a change in a couple's way of thinking, such that impending problems are prevented or better managed. A summary of who might and might not need help is presented in the concluding section of the book.
Table of Contents
Case Examples and Anecdotes -- Should you buy this book? What’s in it? -- Finding a mate: what are we looking for? -- Partner-seeking as job application -- How your infancy affects your marriage: separation and triangulation -- How your childhood affects your marriage: authority, gender, socialization, and adolescence -- Interlude: The abridged Oedipus and Electra myths in plain English -- The couple’s joint personality -- Imogen’s story: three basic modes of couple functioning -- The couple’s life cycle. The early years: Forming and Norming -- The couple’s life cycle. The early years: Storming and Performing -- The couple’s life cycle. The later period: middle years and beyond -- Major psychological forces affecting every couple -- Unconscious communication in domestic life -- Who needs therapy? -- What chance of success? -- Afterword -- Appendix I -- Appendix II -- Appendix III: Useful addresses