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The State of Affairs: Rethinking Infidelity Kindle Edition
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''Poignant stories of couples facing the aftermath of an affair and the highly knowledgeable analysis and advice they received from a well-trained couples' therapist.'' --Kirkus Reviews --This text refers to the audioCD edition.
About the Author
--This text refers to the audioCD edition.
- ASIN : B01N5PY4ZN
- Publisher : Harper; Reprint edition (October 10, 2017)
- Publication date : October 10, 2017
- Language : English
- File size : 1432 KB
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 336 pages
- Lending : Not Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #21,653 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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Overall I really like this book and feel it has really helped me in understanding affairs in general as well as in my own marriage. I will caution, like previous reviewers commented, a chapter near the end of the book suggests that maybe the problem isn’t infidelity but our society’s definition of marriage and maybe we need to rethink the boundaries of what is acceptable and what is allowed in a marriage. This, in my opinion, is flawed and goes against everything I believe. Besides this one chapter dedicated to this idea, there are moments sprinkled in the book where she hints at this notion but she herself seems confused on if that is the best solution as most of the time the relationships with more liberal open rules still end up having affairs, so her defense on this idea doesn’t have much weight. Other than those moments I love the book and it has truly helped me understand and forgive and move on, not forget, but forgive and move on.
My favorite part of the book is a chapter near the end that talks about three different types of couples (referring to ones that stay together after infidelity), the ones who never move on, they stay hurt and constantly bring up the affair and the pain and blame each other, the ones that sweep it under the rug and almost pretend it never happened and “move on” but they don’t really move on because they live in denial that anything even happened, and then there are those that use the affair to transform their marriage and find the positives from the affair and can connect more deeply because of it.
I gave this book 4 stars instead of 5 mainly because of the ideas I don’t agree with regarding redefining marriage, a notion that half the time she seems to be on the fence about herself but has a whole chapter dedicated to it as well as sprinkled hints about through out the book. Other than that I do like the book and found it insightful and loaded with good ideas and mainly understanding.
Top reviews from other countries
At the beginning of the book Esther Peel looks at the conventional wisdom on partnerships and marriages and fidelity in them. She points out that in Western society there are strong views that partners in these are expected to stay loyal to each other, with out straying elsewhere for intimacy and sex. She does not appear to have problems with this per se, but points out there are many divergences form this path. It is human nature to transgress boundaries, even if this is painful.
What follows are a large number of accounts of cases she has encountered. This includes infidelity in conventional marriages, both homo- and hetro- sexual partnerships, open relationships (where issues of infidelity can crop up despite there being a permission to find additional partnerships) as well as ones that insist on monogamy. She looks also at issues of betrayal, the pain of discovery of an affair, how some affairs may save people from bad partnerships and also how that affairs may sometimes (paradoxically?) even save and strengthen relationships. Perel also looks at the various kind of people involved, apparently settled people, those who prefer to have affairs rather than stay in a single one.
All in all the range of people discussed here is wide. Perel's aim is not to discredit monogamy, but to suggest what is needed is a little more space for people in their situations to work through. At one point in the narrative she ponders on the general state of knowledge around human sexuality. As she states it is limited. This book contributes to expanding that space a little more. An enlightening read.
I wonder how many couples would have stayed together had they understood what motivates an affair - not least a million years of evolution!
My betting is that the current generation will be much less likely to run into trouble as there is so much less shame, religion and humiliation around. They do talk to each other as well...! That's the formula!