Customer Review

Reviewed in the United States on October 9, 2014
Amazon-- In this insightful book, celebrated research psychologist and couples counselor John Gottman plumbs the mysteries of love….Where does love come from? Why does some love last, and why does some fade? And how can we keep it alive? Based on laboratory findings, this book shows readers how to identify signs, behaviors, and attitudes that indicate a fraying relationship and provides strategies for repairing what may seem lost or broken.

Gottman has spent decades observing the conversational patterns and biorhythms of thousands and thousands of couples in his famous Love Lab. Now he applies this research to fundamental questions about trust and betrayal. Doubts are common in relationships. Partners often worry. Can I trust my partner? Am I being betrayed? How do I know for sure?
With a gift for translating complex scientific ideas into insightful and practical advice, Gottman explains how a couple can protect or recover their greatest gift, their love for one another.
This book is light and fairly easy to read. That is deceptive. It is a life-saver and one that I dearly wish was in my life when I was stumbling around. Read it if you want to learn about keeping trust in relationships. Oh wonder! Our biology wants closeness with others, yet we often undermine our most important love relationships.

My five takehomes may be helpful to you in your needs-of-today.

1) We are limbic beings, mammals, we need attachment. Connection is not optional for living a good life. We are more efficient when we trust and live longer with it. Mistrust with those close to us is extremely draining psychically/physically.

2) This book has many fixits to restore trust, including detailed and useful surveys for couples to use. One whole chapter says “good relationships needs good sex.” And many lessons on “Learning Trust.”

3) Gottman has a lot of lovely phrases that can help us to keep good habits of loving: Blame+ is the “Roach motel for lovers;” relational experiences go in the nice box, the neutral box, or the nasty box; do you walk through your partners proffered “Sliding door moment?” The “Ziegarnack effect” is that memories of unfinished business do not fade with time. You might notice the downward spiral of a relationship when you either start to have “Negative sentiment override;” and/or “negative comps”—comparing current partner with imagined other partners.

4) Couples spending a lot of time in the Neutral Box [neither nasty nor nice] of emotionally un-flooded communication is very healing; especially if you can be emotionally neutral while noticing disagreements. Another way of saying—being non-reactive to a relationship’s emotional weather is darn important. Humor rocks!

5) This book describes the ten kinds of betrayal of trust in relationships; sexual cheating is but one.

Thank you, John and Nan for telling us as so much, so painlessly! And Kim for tightening this piece, nicely.
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