From Publishers Weekly
Good communication may be the key to a lasting, loving marriage, but not just any communication. In his first book Cloke argues that real talk based in real life—not myth or fantasy—is missing, and discovering how to achieve this level of communication can reverse the course of a failing marriage. The author, a popular psychotherapist, urges couples to examine both practical priorities and values and whatever they may be idealizing, be that money, sex, or a different definition of success. Couples need to look at behavior and communication patterns from their childhoods, Cloke argues, offering a practical guide and dozens of questions to foster dialogue and reflection. The goal is to end the cycle of hurtful communication by exposing—and learning from—the emotionally-wounded, angry child behind the adult self, and hallmarks of effective communication (criticism vs. constructive complaint, for example) are delineated. While Cloke's ideas about what makes a marriage work are far from revolutionary, he goes beyond common sense, and his case studies put complex marital problems—and solutions—on display. This is a thorough treatment plan for the troubled marriage; in the absence of couples' therapy, or in conjunction with it, it will prove helpful. (Feb.)
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"Happy Together explains why love, like happiness, is an inside job. Dr. Bill Cloke gives great insights into how to create a loving relationship that lasts. -Marci Shimoff, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Happy for No Reason
"Bill Cloke is a genius at showing us how to make the relationship of our dreams more than just a dream. His step-by-step approach for dealing with the most important and sensitive of relationship issues brings us hope that we can develop the skills we need to make our relationships thrive. Especially key are his sections throughout on how to understand our personal pain and that of our partner and then use the conflicts that naturally ensue to create what we all long for-a deeply loving and intimate connection. If you are serious about wanting to create and share a truly meaningful love, this book is for you. Happy Together is a genuinely beautiful and practical work that should be every couple's companion for a lifetime. -Patricia Spadaro, author of Honor Yourself: The Inner Art of Giving and Receiving
"This book is a must read for those wishing for loving relationships that work! Bill Cloke is a master of practical methods for cultivating intimacy and love. He reveals the deeper causes of problems we face with loved ones and he offers success stories of couples he has treated and solutions we can apply in our own lives. -Dr. Joan Goldsmith, coauthor with Warren Bennis of Learning to Lead: A Workbook on Becoming a Leader