After the Honeymoon: How Conflict Can Improve Your Relationship

Daniel P. Wile, Author John Wiley & Sons $22.95 (285p) ISBN 978-0-471-85347-3
Twenty years as a practicing psychologist has shown the author the bonanza of difficulties that can beset couplesfrom the nitpicking annoyances to divorce-sized concernsand many readers will recognize certain elements of discord discussed here. By illustrating, with examples, how small behavioral details can mask major issues between partners, and by creating mock conversations between couples, Wile pinpoints the habits and thought patterns he believes frequently threaten relationships. His ideas are not new and his main message is familiar: at the bottom of most troubles lies a lack of communication. He maintains that partners fall into accusatory modes of thinking that block attempts at harmony, and he suggests some insightful strategies for ``blending'' problems into a relationship. What most invigorates this book, though, is Wile's firm grasp and display of sensitive psychological points between partnersthe fear of abandonment and of being taken for granted, the resentment of domination, dependency and boredomthat, in fact, are the roots of many conflicts. Those willing to wade through the recurrent pattern of theory and example that guides Wile's writing will find a commonsensical approach to relationships and a healthy pep talk that may get them started toward better times. Wile wrote Couples Therapy. (July)
Reviewed on: 06/03/1988
Release date: 05/01/1988
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