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Facing Love Addiction: Giving Yourself the Power to Change the Way You Love Paperback – April 29, 2003

4.5 out of 5 stars 181 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

Mellody has written a lucid and informa tive book on a subject little understood: love addiction. Speaking both from per sonal experience and a clinical standpoint, she very carefully defines her terms, in cluding "love addict," "avoidance addict," and, of course, codependence. The last term she carefully distinguishes from love addiction. She also includes information on the recovery process, the marks of a healthy relationship, and the process of en tering into a healthy relationship. The book concludes with a set of journal exer cises designed to help someone in recov ery. Worthwhile reading that is recom mended for libraries serving both the professional and general reader.
-Barbara L. Flynn, Chicago P.L.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.

About the Author

Pia Mellody is an internationally renowned lecturer on the childhood origins of emotional dysfunc-tion. Her recovery work-shops have benefited people all over the world and her bestselling books have been translated into many languages. She is a member of the faculty at The Meadows Treatment Center, a residential center for victims of trauma, emotional abuse, and addictions, in Wickenburg, Arizona.



J. Keith Miller, the author of A Hunger for Healing, is a popular speaker and conference leader, and author. Among his best-selling books are The Taste of New Wine and Hope in the Fast Lane. He is also the coauthor of Facing Codependence.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: HarperOne; 1 edition (April 29, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0062506048
  • ISBN-13: 978-0062506047
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.7 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (181 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #7,063 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I found this book well written and comprehensive, but what was the most moving to me was the way in which it touched the most painful and sad and hidden part of my relationships. Not only does it talk about me and why I do this, but it clearly talks about my partner(s) and what they seek in this valiant but destructive and Quixotic dance we do. I did not need my highlighter, as my tears did the highlighting on each and every page. Strangely, the more I read into the book the more soothed I felt in that I understood, finally, that I am not alone, that I needn't be alone and that there is a way out from this. If you suffer in relationships in the dramatic push-pull way, if the relationships you have are frought with complicated manipulations, if you want a way out...please read this book. Best of luck. Tim
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Format: Paperback
This book was recommended by my therapist. After going thru the whole book and writing all the exercises, I have unlocked and unloaded a ton of childhood pain and trauma. You will shed floods of tears and feel terrible feelings you have buried, but this process is like the purging of toxins so you can begin to heal.

One customer commented that the author didn't offer any recovery tools. I'd like to offer my experience: The most important recovery tool is to develop a relationship with a Higher Power that is not a person or object. For if you do not have a Higher Power, you will turn to a person or object for that love, which will result in addiction.

From time to time, during recovery, painful feelings will surface, triggered by whatever or whomever you're dealing with day to day. When I was in a relationship, it was hard because I couldn't get away easily to process the triggered feelings. The book offers suggestions which are good, but not that easy to do for me. Now that I'm not in that relationship, I've followed my therapist's suggestion to identify the triggering event, the root cause (usually from your childhood), and replace the painful feeling with thoughts, words, and deeds that make me feel better. This 3-step process takes tremendous discipline because many times I just want to stick to my lifelong habit of self-pity, depression, and pessimism.

I also begin my day with one hour of Prayer Walk. I meditate every day to empty my mind, and infuse my being with God's love. Since I've been doing recovery, I have stopped crying over loneliness, stopped longing for that "soulmate", and stopped the frantic search. After all, you are your true soulmate, because if you can't love you, no one can.
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Format: Paperback
I read this book about four or five years ago, and it helped me understand, in a way that nothing had before, why my relationships were not working. I have read several books on building healthy relationships, and many are good, but this is the one that saved my life. Pia's model explains that while I was searching for love, I was really much more afraid to receive it than I had ever thought. Before I read it, I hadn't been able to sustain any relationship for long, and had never been close to marriage. Now I am happily married, and I still turn to this book for tune-ups in my marriage. Thank you Pia, very much!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Most books about codependency focus on the classic relationship dichotomy of co-dependent and alcoholic/addict/narcissist. This is the only book I have found that deeply explores the relationship that is created when two co-dependents come together.

For years I have been involved in a relationship that I knew was co-dependent, but none of the books I found on codependency really captured my situation. When I started reading this book my heart started pounding-- It was as if the author knew me, my partner and my relationship inside and out. I am only through part one of this book, but it has already transformed my understanding of my current romantic issues.

To summarize, there are co-dependents who are love-addicted and co-dependents who are love-avoidant:

Love addicts are driven by a primary fear of abandonment spawned from childhood neglect/abandonment. They are characterized by low-self esteem and neediness, and are looking for someone to rescue them and fill the hole in their hearts.

Love avoidants are driven primarily by guilt and a fear of intimacy. During childhood they took an inappropriate "care-taking" role for a parent, which taught them that loving is to care for another, but also that to love is to be drained and controlled by another persons need. They are often characterized by being very capable and very busy, but also controlling (to avoid being controlled) and fickle.

When the two come together they are initially very happy. But, with time, the neediness of the love-addict activates the love-avoidant's fear of intimacy and being controlled. The avoidant then begins to pull away, activating the abandonment fears of the love addict, and driving them to be even more desperate and needy.
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Format: Paperback
This is a brilliant and raw book on a toxic problem that both genders face - addiction to romance and "love" that is really a form of excitement. Anyone in recovery would benefit from this and from Pia's clinical workshops. Culture and society trains people to seek love and security and self-worth through a romantic partnership. Within sound and grounded thinking this is a complement to a full life. But all addiction is an ultimate highway to chaos and self-destruction. Tuning out and tuning into ourselves is the greatest gift we can do to heal the wounds and pain that anihilate our self-respect.

Love addiction is emotional cocaine. Stay away!
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