The State of Affairs : Rethinking Infidelity
Iconic couples' therapist and bestselling author of Mating in Captivity Esther Perel returns to paperback with a provocative look at relationships through the lens of infidelity.
An affair: it can rob a couple of their relationship, their happiness, their very identity. And yet, this extremely common human experience is so poorly understood. What are we to make of this time-honored taboo--universally forbidden yet universally practiced? Why do people cheat--even those in happy marriages? Why does an affair hurt so much? When we say infidelity, what exactly do we mean? Do our romantic expectations of marriage set us up for betrayal? Is there such a thing as an affair-proof marriage? Is it possible to love more than one person at once? Can an affair ever help a marriage? Perel weaves real-life case stories with incisive psychological and cultural analysis in this fast-paced and compelling book.
For the past ten years, Perel has traveled the globe and worked with hundreds of couples who have grappled with infidelity. Betrayal hurts, she writes, but it can be healed. An affair can even be the doorway to a new marriage--with the same person. With the right approach, couples can grow and learn from these tumultuous experiences, together or apart.
Affairs, she argues, have a lot to teach us about modern relationships--what we expect, what we think we want, and what we feel entitled to. They offer a unique window into our personal and cultural attitudes about love, lust, and commitment. Through examining illicit love from multiple angles, Perel invites readers into an honest, enlightened, and entertaining exploration of modern marriage in its many variations.
Fiercely intelligent, The State of Affairs provides a daring framework for understanding the intricacies of love and desire. As Perel observes, "Love is messy; infidelity more so. But it is also a window, like no other, into the crevices of the human heart."
'Perel's beautiful new book asks us to pause and examine our prejudices and assumptions around affairs - and to hold off on our usual knee jerk attempts to approve or condemn. She wants, first and foremost, that we understand why infidelity happens and what really occurs when it does. Anyone who thinks they understand the topic already needs to read this book urgently. Perel's work amounts to a brilliantly intelligent plea for complexity, understanding and-always-kindness.' -- Alain de Botton
Psychotherapist Esther Perel is recognized as one of today's most insightful and original voices on modern love. Fluent in nine languages, she holds a therapy practice in New York City and serves as an organizational consultant for Fortune 500 companies around the world. Her celebrated TED talks have garnered more than 18 million views and her bestseller Mating in Captivity: Unlocking Erotic Intelligence became a global phenomenon translated into 24 languages. Her second book The State of Affairs: Rethinking Infidelity is due out October 2017 published by Yellow Kite in the UK and Harper Collins in the US. Esther is also an executive producer and the host of the Audible original audio series "Where Should We Begin?" which launches on iTunes Autumn 2017.