Review of Why Love Is Not Enough

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Review of Why Love is not Enough
By
Michael Koester

Submitted in partial fulfillment of the course requirements for Psysc 213 Psychology of Adjustment
To Kimberly D. Brown, M. A.
Ball State University
Spring Term, 2012

Why Love is not Enough
Sol Gordon, Ph. D.
Copyright 1988, 1990
Bob Adams, Inc.
147 pages

Why Love is not Enough

The author, Sol Gordon, Ph. D. received his B.A. and M.S. from the University of Illinois in 1947. He then went on to get a Ph. D. in psychology from the University of London in 1953. Since graduation, he has served as Chief Psychologist at the Philadelphia Child Guidance Clinic and the Middlesex County Mental Health Clinic. He also was a professor of Child and Family Studies and Yeshiva University, and later was the Director of the Institute for Family Research and Education at Syracuse University. After his “retirement”, he began giving lectures on sexuality, promotion of self-esteem, and suicide prevention. In his lifetime, he has written 15 books, and over one hundred articles. The author starts off the book with a dedication to his wife. In this, he shows that he has personal experience with the subject he is writing about. They had been married 35 years, and he knew, like the majority of other married couples, the good times and bad times of marriage. But he took his own advice, and finished by saying he will still look up at his wife after 50 years and say “I still like you.” The whole point of the book is about improving you own self when it comes to relationships. Gordon starts off with some problems in relationships today. He says that most people blame it on the excuse that they can’t find the right guy/gal, but where most of the problems lie, is with the recipient’s low self-esteem. Most people find their relationships unsatisfying because they don’t value themselves. Gordon addresses his audience in this way. “This book is for people who want a lasting, mature relationship. It is also for people whose current relationship or marriage is unsatisfactory.” (Gordon, 1990. Pg. 13). The book then continues with a focus off of “love”. It talks about how love and sex are never the only reasons to get married (Gordon, 1990). It approaches subjects like sex, intimacy, space, friendship, and when to get married. The key point of the second chapter was that “intimacy and sex are not synonymous, and a strong relationship that is less than ideal sexually is not doomed.” (Gordon, 1990. Pg. 23). Continuing along the lines of a relationship, the focus switches to a self-centered policy. What reasons are YOU datable? “Your relationships are a mirror, an exact replica of what you think and believe about yourself. When you look at a man or woman from across the room and decide instantaneously that you are not interested in them, you are giving others permission to judge and evaluate you in the same way.” (Bradley, 1996. Pg. 5). It discusses points on how you can expect to be loved by someone else if you don’t love and respect yourself (Gordon, 1990). This chapter keys in on self-esteem, healthy body, and happy mind. It even goes so far to discuss reasons why we feel depression and worthlessness and talks about ways to feel better about yourself. As we dive further into the book, the subject of love comes up again. What is it? How do we describe it? “There are many approaches to love, and it is not possible to give a single definition.” (Hendrick, 1992. Pg. 5). To put it simply – love is unexplainable. Gordon talks about the definition of immature love, a fairy tale love, and mature love, a love with partners willing to commit and compromise. He also goes into different views on the characterization of love. He mentions Robert Sternberg’s triangle of love: commitment, intimacy, and passion. Once fully discussed the actual feeling of a mature love, Gordon finally settles into his third section of the book: marriage. He sets out a pre-emptive strike for what to do before tying the knot....
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