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The 50 Greatest Self-Help Books

Best Self Help Books


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Intimate Relationships:
Relationship Advice Self Help Books

The radio plays touching songs of finding true love - interspersed with heartwrenching songs of being left behind and mistreated. Continue reading Intimate Relationships article»

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The self help books listed below are helpful guides to dealing with common relationship problems and challenges, making good relationships even better.

See also:Communication Skills; Sexuality and Sex Education; Women's Sexual Health; Men's Sexual Health

Positive Sexuality Resources is a list of recommended readings on many facets of sexuality and human sexual behavior, with an emphasis on sexuality as a positive force in life.

Best Self Help Books on Intimate Relationships: Relationship Advice

Getting the Love You Want by Harville HendrixPassionate Marriage by David SchnarchRekindling Desire by Barry and Emily McCarthy"These are the Intimate Relationships and Marriage self help books I recommend most frequently for couples who are working to build a better emotional, sexual, and intimate relationahip."
David Yarian, Ph.D.





More Recommended Self Help Books on Intimate Relationships: Relationship Advice

After the Affair by Janis A. SpringAfter the Affair: Healing the Pain and Rebuilding Trust When a Partner Has Been Unfaithful
Janis A. Spring

For the seventy percent of couples who have been affected by extramarital affairs, this self help book offers strategies for surviving the crisis and rebuilding the relationship. Dr. Spring, a psychologist, guides both hurt and unfaithful partners through the three stages of healing: normalizing feelings, deciding whether to recommit, and revitalizing the relationship. The book offers practical advice to help you cultivate trust and forgiveness and build a healthier partnership. 1997, Perennial Currents


Confessions of a Naughty Mommy by Heidi RaykeilConfessions of a Naughty Mommy: How I Found My Lost Libido
Heidi Raykeil

Confessions of a Naughty Mommy is a funny, honest, and sexy account of Raykeil’s search for her missing libido—lost in action after she gave birth to her daughter. She takes readers along on her journey from mystified and frustrated new mom through the bumpy awkwardness of reigniting the home fires during naptime and date night to a newfound discovery and appreciation of sex after baby. With humor, grit, and style, she shares what has worked for her and her husband, as they balance their dual roles of parents and lovers. 2005, Seal Press


Couple Skills by Matthew McKay, Patrick Fanning and Kim PalegCouple Skills: Making Your Relationship Work
Matthew McKay, Patrick Fanning and Kim Paleg

Love takes work, but, when it comes to relationships, it pays to work smarter. This self help book, a revised and updated edition of a therapist-recommended classic, shows you how to work smarter in your relationship. Couple Skills helps you improve communication, cope better with problems, and resolve conflicts in healthy and creative ways. Each chapter teaches an essential skill, based on cognitive behavioral therapy, which A 50 Greatest Self Help Bookcan lead to greater happiness and deeper intimacy. 2006, New Harbinger


The Couples Companion by Harville HendrixThe Couples Companion: Meditations & Exercises for Getting the Love You Want; A Workbook for Couples
Harville Hendrix

This collection of practical exercises gives couples a useful structure to help develop communication skills, conflict resolution skills and alternative ways for dealing with painful and powerful emotions. This is a self help toolbox to help you make significant improvements in your marriage or relationship. These exercises will enhance self-understanding as well as understanding your partner. 1994, Atria


Coming Home to PassionComing Home to Passion: Restoring Loving Sexuality in Couples with Histories of Childhood Trauma and Neglect
Ruth Cohn

Coming Home to Passion is an invaluable tool for couples searching for a roadmap out of the familiar but lonely patterns afflicting many pairings of adult children of trauma with adult children of neglect. Drawing on two decades of work as a psychotherapist in the field of trauma, the author stands out as a sharp and careful observer of the heartbreaking relationship patterns of such long-suffering couples. Ms. Cohn's confident humanity and clarity offer an unblinking beacon of hope. 2011, Praeger


Create Your Own Love Story by David McMillanCreate Your Own Love Story: The Art of Lasting Relationships
David McMillan

Each couple has its own story, the essence of its relationship. Dr. McMillan shows you how to transform your shared history with your partner into a true love story that makes your relationship stronger, more enduring and more soul-satisfying.  1997, Beyond Words Publishing


The Dance of Intimacy by Harriet LernerThe Dance of Intimacy: A Woman's Guide to Courageous Acts of Change in Key Relationships
Harriet Lerner

Lerner outlines the steps to take so that good relationships can be strengthened and difficult ones can be healed. She highlights the importance of women defining themselves, their needs and limits rather than emotionally distancing themselves from problems or over-reacting. She encourages women to explore their family of origin to clarify the genesis of non-adaptive behavior patterns. 1990, Perennial 


Discovering Your Couple Sexual Style by Barry and Emily McCarthyDiscovering Your Couple Sexual Style: Sharing Desire, Pleasure, and Satisfaction
Barry McCarthy; Emily McCarthy

Discovering Your Couple Sexual Style urges couples to ignore what they see on TV and discover their own unique sexual style. The McCarthys offer three guidelines for sexual satisfaction: develop positive, realistic sexual expectations; explore sensual and sexual options; and communicate sexual desires. With this foundation, couples can take a straightforward survey to determine which of four couple sexual styles best fits their relationship. An understanding of couple sexual styles can play a vibrant role in energizing a couple’s bond and contribute to a satisfying relationship that integrates intimacy and eroticism. Winner of the 2009 Smart Marriages® Impact Award 2009, Routledge


Divorce Busting by Michele Weiner-DavisDivorce Busting: A Step-by-Step Approach to Making Your Marriage Loving Again
Michele Weiner-Davis

Offering a brief solution-oriented approach, Michele Weiner-Davis gives straight- forward and effective advice on how couples can stay together. Her approach focuses on the present and the future rather than the past, and on identifying problem-solving behavior that works. Many case histories illustrate techniques which can be used even if only one partner participates. 1993, Simon & Schuster


Enduring DesireEnduring Desire: Your Guide to Lifelong Intimacy
Michael E. Metz and Barry W. McCarthy

In Enduring Desire Metz and McCarthy provide real-life stories and helpful individual and couple exercises that help readers to reach for realistic and high quality sexual satisfaction as a couple. The authors encourage couples to set positive and realistic sexual expectations without trying to live up to some imagined standard from the movies. Their message is down-to-earth and full of encouragement for all couples of any age.
Winner of the 2011 AASECT Book Award! 2010, Routledge


Emotional Fitness for Couples by Barton GoldsmithEmotional Fitness for Couples: 10 Minutes a Day to a Better Relationship
Barton Goldsmith

Emotional Fitness for Couples offers you a step-by-step progam you can use to hone your relationship skills to championship levels—in just ten minutes a day. You can use this self help book alone, or you can try the exercises with your partner, going through the book in order or choosing those chapters most relevant to your particular goals. Topics include: what the word "love" really means; the importance of physical touch; how to date your mate; how to achieve emotional balance; ways to deal with finances; tricks for stopping an argument before it starts; goal-setting strategies for couples; ways to deal with being apart; tips for coping with hurt before it turns into resentment; and much more. 2005, New Harbinger


Fear of Intimacy by Robert Firestone and Joyce CatlettFear of Intimacy
Robert Firestone and Joyce Catlett

The authors argue that relationships fail primarily because psychological defenses formed in childhood act as a barrier to closeness in adulthood. Powerful personal accounts illustrate how the “fantasy bond,” a once useful but now destructive form of self-protection, jeopardizes meaningful attachments. 2000, American Psychological Association


The Fragile Bond by Augustus NapierThe Fragile Bond: In Search of an Equal, Intimate, and Enduring Marriage
Augustus Napier

Focusing on the author’s own marriage and on a group of case studies, Napier vividly illustrates the obstacles married couples face today, and offers help in overcoming them. 1990, HarperCollins

 


Getting the Love You Want by Harville HendrixGetting the Love You Want: A Guide for Couples
Harville Hendrix

This popular self help book is divided into three sections: the first, “the unconscious marriage” describes how left-over desires and behavior from childhood interfere with the current relationship. The second section “the conscious marriage” describes how a marriage could fulfill childhood needs in a positive manner. The third section is a course in relationship therapy which gives detailed exercises for both partners to follow in order to learn how to replace confrontational criticism with a healing process of mutual growth and support. 2007, St. Martin's GriffinA 50 Greatest Self Help Book



Healing Together by Dianne Kane; Suzanne PhillipsHealing Together: A Couple's Guide to Coping with Trauma and Post-Traumatic Stress
Dianne Kane; Suzanne B. Phillips

After a traumatic experience – violence, natural disasters, war, life-threatening accidents, crime, health problems, or loss of a loved one -- we are told time and time again to take care of ourselves and reach out to the people we love. But what happens when you reach out and your partner can't reach back? One or both partners can use this practical, step-by-step program to recover from trauma or help their partner recover by understanding the impact of the trauma, learning to communicate their needs, managing anger, dealing with traumatic memories, recapturing lost intimacy, and recognizing their resiliency as a couple. 2009, New Harbinger


The Heart and Soul of Sex by Gina OgdenThe Heart and Soul of Sex: Making the ISIS Connection
Gina Ogden

Based on a landmark sex survey, researcher and sex therapist Ogden found "the language of spiritual experience comes closest to expressing the fullness of our sexual response, for it is the language of connection and ecstasy." This self help book guides the reader on a path to her sexual "center" where healing, ecstasy and transformation occur. 2006, Trumpter
A 50 Greatest Self Help Book


Pick of the Month Self Help BookThis book was a Pick of the Month Self Help Book! Read David's full Book Review.

 


The High-Conflict Couple by alan FruzzettiThe High-Conflict Couple: A Dialectical Behavior Therapy Guide to Finding Peace, Intimacy, and Validation
Alan Fruzzetti

When out-of-control emotions are the root cause of problems in a relationship, no amount of effective communication or intimacy building will fix what ails it. This self help book teaches you how to use mindfulness and distress tolerance techniques to de-escalate conflict situations before they have a chance to flare into serious fights. 2006, New Harbinger


How Can I Get Through to You? by Terrence RealHow Can I Get Through to You?: Closing the Intimacy Gap Between Men and Women
Terrence Real

Real believes that men and women do not speak the same emotional language because boys’ early emotional relationships were squelched by peers, siblings and fathers, while girls early on learned to be accommodating in emotional relationships. He believes healthy marriage follows a repeated pattern of harmony, disharmony, and restoration; and teaches skills for accomplishing the crucial ongoing task of relationship repair, including holding the relationship in high regard, preserving intimacy, and using relational speaking, listening and negotiating skills. A practical and helpful self help book. 2002, Scribners


How One of You Can Bring the Two of You Together by susan PageHow One of You Can Bring the Two of You Together
Susan Page

Susan Page's ground-breaking approach to relationships gives readers the tools and encouragement they need to bring positive changes to their relationship, even when their partners are unwilling to do the work. Step-by-step Page demonstrates that with tangible goals, and new ways of thinking, one partner can bring new levels of harmony and love to a relationship. 1998, Broadway, Reprint edition


How to Improve Your Marriage without Talking about it by Patricia Love, Steven StosnyHow to Improve Your Marriage without Talking About It
Patricia Love, Steven Stosny

If you've ever told your spouse, “I talk until I'm blue in the face,” or “It's in one ear and out the other,” stop whatever you're doing and read this book immediately! You're about to discover why talking things out isn't always the best way to get through to your spouse or achieve more closeness and connection. More important, you'll learn exactly what you need to do today to truly transform your relationship forever. 2008, Broadway


Intimacy After Infidelity by Steven Solomon, Lorie TeagnoIntimacy After Infidelity: How to Rebuild and Affair-proof Your Marriage
Steven D. Solomon, Lorie J. Teagno

This self help book offers readers a compassionate and effective strategy for recovery after their partner has cheated by identifying the three kinds of infidelity; overcoming the pain of betrayal; and learning to rebuild a healthier "affair-proof" relationship. 2006, New Harbinger


Intimate Strangers by Lillian RubinIntimate Strangers: Men and Women Together
Lillian Rubin

This self help book explains how the differences between women and men arise and how they affect such critical issues as intimacy, sexuality, dependency, work and parenting. Lillian Rubin decodes human behavior with a lively combination of intuition and scholarship and offers hope for every man and woman who has yearned for an intimate relationship and wondered why it seemed so elusive. 1990, Perennial


Introvert & Extrovert in Love by Marti Olsen Laney, Michael LaneyIntrovert & Extrovert in Love: Making It Work When Opposites Attract
Marti Olsen Laney, Michael Laney

The (introvert) best-selling author of The Introvert Advantage teams up with her (extrovert) husband to offer this warm and witty collection of tips for making the most of differing social needs, conflict styles, and personal priorities that are common to these kinds of "mixed" relationships. The key to introvert/extrovert bliss lies in understanding what makes the other person tick and using your differences to help balance and enrich the relationship. 2007, New Harbinger


Journey of the Heart by John WelwoodJourney of the Heart: The Path of Conscious Love
John Welwood

This self help book stands out as a poetically written, wisdom-filled guide to a deeper understanding of the desires and directions of the human heart. The book does not provide easy answers or quick fixes; it gives instead superb suggestions for joining in the most powerful and spiritual union possible. Welwood offers advice for couples on using love’s challenges to grow as individuals and in their relationships. He shows people how the most difficult and confusing areas of relationships can be used to awaken the deepest human strengths and resources. 1996, Perennial
A 50 Greatest Self Help Book



Keeping the Love You Find by Harville HendrixKeeping the Love You Find
Harville Hendrix

This guide for singles who seek a loving and rewarding romantic relationship shows readers how to meet the challenges of a new relationship and avoid making the same mistakes, and how to deal with emotional issues and improve their odds of achieving the kind of relationship they most deeply want. Hendrix especially focuses on how to maintain a positive relationship with someone you love over the long term. 1993, Atria


Lesbian Couples by Merilee Clunis and Dorsey GreenLesbian Couples: A Guide to Creating Healthy Relationships
Merilee Clunis and Dorsey Green

For lesbians (as for all couples) achieving and sustaining intimacy remains a challenge. From mind-reading and making assumptions to conflict and disillusionment, this self help book examines the strengths and weakness, flagging potential problem areas and offering real-life examples and solutions to the challenges lesbian couples experience. 2005, Seal Press


Love and Awakening by John WelwoodLove and Awakening: Discovering the Sacred Path of Intimate Relationship
John Welwood

Psychologist Welwood challenges couples to approach difficulties as opportunities for spiritual growth rather than conflict. This is a self help guidebook for couples seriously committed to spiritual and personal growth. It provides a wealth of practical guidance on how to deal with difficult problems and includes lively dialogues from Welwood’s workshops that illustrate his ideas. 1997, Perennial Currents


Love in the Time of ColicLove in the Time of Colic: The New Parents' Guide to Getting It On Again
Ian Kerner and Heidi Raykeil

Sex. After. Baby. How do new parents, exhausted with sleepless nights, find the time and energy to continue the warm sexual relationship they enjoyed before becoming parents? Many couples struggle to find ways to even talk about the problem. In Love in the Time of Colic, authors Kerner and Raykeil show the way. Their premise: that sex matters . . . a lot. It's the glue that holds couples together and keeps lovers from becoming simply roommates or co-parents. Funny and frank, Love in the Time of Colic will help parents take the charge out of this once-taboo subject, and put it back where it belongs—in the bedroom. 2009, Harper


Loving Someone with Bipolar Disorder by Julie Fast, John PrestonLoving Someone With Bipolar Disorder: Understanding and Helping Your Partner
Julie A. Fast, John D. Preston

This is a ground-breaking self help book for couples who want to prevent manic-depressive disorder from hijacking their relationship. Once medication has been prescribed, the key is studying the specific ways your partner is affected. This allows couples to develop proactive strategies for treating and stabilizing mood swings and symptoms, before they develop into full-blown crises. This book is an oasis of relief and hope. 2004, New Harbinger


Love is Never Enough by Aaron BeckLove Is Never Enough: How Couples Can Overcome Misunderstandings, Resolve Conflicts, and Solve Relationship Problems Through Cognitive Therapy
Aaron Beck

Dr. Beck analyzes the most common problems in marriage: the power of negative thinking, disillusionment, rigid rules and expectations, and miscommunication. This highly rated self help book is filled with practical suggestions, exercises and encouragement. 1989, Perennial Currents


Mating in Captivity by Esther PerelMating in Captivity: Reconciling the Erotic and the Domestic
Esther Perel

Focusing on "erotic intelligence", psychotherapist Perel asserts that languishing desire in a relationship actually results from all the factors people look for in love and marriage: grounding, meaning, continuity. She recommends several proposals for rekindling eroticism: cultivating separateness (autonomy) in a relationship rather than closeness (entrapment); exploring dynamics of power and control (i.e., submission, spanking); and learning to surrender to a "sexual ruthlessness" that liberates us from shame and guilt. Perel sanctions fantasy and play and offers the estranged modern couple a unique richness of experience. 2006, HarperCollins
A 50 Greatest Self Help Book

 


The Mindful Couple by Robyn Wasler, Darrah WestrupThe Mindful Couple: How Acceptance and Mindfulness Can Lead You to the Love You Want
Robyn Wasler, Darrah Westrup

With strategies drawn from acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT), a powerful therapeutic approach, The Mindful Couple will help you identify your core values and discover, as a couple, the beauty that is available to you and your partner when you bring greater awareness and values-guided behavior to your relationship. Each chapter explores a key issue, such as passion, fidelity, and the balance between dependence and independence, and includes specific practices you can do alone or with your partner to help you build a vital relationship. 2009, New Harbinger


The New Rules of Marriage by Terrence RealThe New Rules of Marriage: What You Need to Know to Make Love Work
Terrence Real

Author Real faces head-on the reality that many women are frustrated and angry with the struggle to achieve true emotional intimacy with their man. In recent decades, many women's responsibilities and aspirations have grown dramatically while many men's roles and expectations have not. Much marital dissatisfaction is rooted in men’s silence and disengagement, and women’s increasingly vocal attempts to attain meaningful closeness and cooperation. Real points out that men are often driven by their desire to avoid feelings of shame, while women are often driven by fear. The New Rules coaches couples through techniques to address the resulting anguish and deadlock, gently but deftly leading both women and men toward a more comfortable and collaborative relationship. 2008, Broadway


Open by Jenny blockOpen: Love, Sex, and Life in an Open Marriage
Jenny Block

Jenny Block is your average girl next door, a suburban wife and mother for whom married life never felt quite right. In Open, she paints a down to earth picture of how an open marriage can work, and specifically why it works for her and her husband. In dissecting other people’s strong reactions to her choice, she explores the question of why cheating is more socially acceptable than open marriage. Open challenges our notions of what traditional marriage looks like, and presents one woman’s journey down an uncertain path that ultimately proves that open marriage is a viable option for her life. 2008, Seal Press


Opening Up by Tristan TaorminoOpening Up: A Guide to Creating and Sustaining Open Relationships
Tristan Taormino

Relationship expert and bestselling author Tristan Taormino offers a bold new strategy for creating loving, lasting relationships. Drawing on in-depth interviews with over a hundred women and men, Opening Up explores the real-life benefits and challenges of all styles of open relationships—from partnered nonmonogamy to solo polyamory. With her refreshingly down-to-earth style and sharp wit, Taormino offers solutions for making an open relationship work, including tips on dealing with jealousy, negotiating boundaries, finding community, parenting, and time management. Opening Up will change the way you think about intimacy. 2008, Cleis Press


Passionate Marriage by David SchnarchPassionate Marriage: Love, Sex and Intimacy in Emotionally Committed Relationships
David Schnarch

Schnarch says that a man is more likely to let a relationship suffer in order to hold on to his sense of self, while a woman is more apt to let her identity suffer to help strengthen a relationship. Schnarch explains how to alter this pattern, encouraging each partner to move towards “differentiation” -- which means holding on to the self while simultaneously remaining in contact with one’s partner. Schnarch teaches how to find inner strength and resilience that can be used to reaffirm a relationship and reignite sex. A self help classic, highly recommended. 1998, Owl Books
A 50 Greatest Self Help Book

 


The Power of Two by Susan Heitler and Paula Singer The Power of Two: Secrets Of a Strong and Loving Marriage
Susan Heitler and Paula Singer

This practical guide for strengthening marriage offers advice for couples seeking to understand themselves and each other, including dealing with differences, supporting each other, building emotional and sexual intimacy, and living together with kindness. 1997, New Harbinger


Private Lies by Frank PittmanPrivate Lies: Infidelity and the Betrayal of Intimacy
Frank Pittman

For people who suspect their spouses are having a secret romantic affair, or who are coping with the aftermath of one, this book offers sensible counsel. Dr. Pittman, a psychiatrist, draws profiles of four basic patterns of betrayal: accidental flings which “just happen;” habitual philandering, which he believes to be motivated by insecurity and fear of the opposite sex; crazy, in-love romantic states that cloud one’s judgment; and marital arrangement ranging from sexual supplements to flamboyant revenge affairs. This self help book explores the whys and wherefores about infidelity and offers advice for both the unfaithful and the wounded partner. 1990, Norton


Receiving Love by Harville Hendrix and helen Lakelly HuntReceiving Love: Transform Your Relationship by Letting Yourself Be Loved
Harville Hendrix and Helen LaKelly Hunt

This self help book addresses a common relationship problem: the difficulty of accepting love which may be expressed by criticizing a gift from one's partner or spurning an intimate gesture. The authors point out that there are many ways to defend yourself against someone else's desire to encourage, help or love you. This may occur through overvaluing your partner and feeling unworthy of his or her love or through devaluing that partner and seeing him or her as unworthy of giving love. The authors provide concrete steps to help you learn how to receive love in the vulnerable context of an intimate relationship. 2005, Atria


Reconcilable Differences by Andrew Christensen, Neil JacobsonReconcilable Differences
Andrew Christensen, Neil S. Jacobson

This self help book speaks directly to the heart. Couples in conflict will recognize themselves in these pages and learn how to move beyond conflict to acceptance, understanding and change. 2002, The Guilford Press



Rekindling Desire by Barry and Emily McCarthyRekindling Desire: A Step-by-Step Program to Help Low-Sex and No-Sex Marriages
Barry and Emily McCarthy

Sex and marital experts Barry and Emily McCarthy offer a ground-breaking ten-step program to help couples break down the barriers that have developed between them and rebuild closeness and longing. First they show couples how to root out the “poisons” that inhibit sexual desire: shame, guilt, anger, and passivity as well as medical side effects and physical dysfunctions. They then offer techniques and strategies to help couples revitalize desire and integrate intimacy and eroticism. 2003, Brunner-Routledge


The Relationship Cure by John Gottman and Joan DeClaireThe Relationship Cure: A five-Step Guide to Strengthening Your Marriage, Family, and Friendships
John Gottman and Joan DeClaire

Gottman offers a research-based approach to improving intimate relationships. He provides a remarkable set of tools for relationship repair. The authors state that happiness is based on everyday communication that involves emotion and how other people respond or fail to respond to this communication. A five-step self help program shows readers how to improve their emotional communications. 2002, Crown


Resurrecting Sex by David Schnarch and James MaddockResurrecting Sex: Solving Sexual Problems and Revolutionizing Your Relationship
David Schnarch and James Maddock

By showing couples how they can turn their worst sex and relationship disasters into personal growth and spiritual connection, Dr. Schnarch offers couples the best sex of their lives. In addition to taking an unflinchingly honest, realistic, and erotic approach to sex, Dr. Schnarch reveals the complicated emotional interactions hidden within couples’ most private moments. This sympathetic self help book shows how couples can cure the rejection, hostility, and emotional alienation that often accompany sexual problems and thus deepen and strengthen their relationship. 2003, Perennial Currents


The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work by John Gottman and Nan silverThe Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work: A Practical Guide from the Country's Foremost Relationship Expert
John Gottman and Nan Silver

This highly ranked self-help book offers positive approaches for helping couples make sense of their difficulties and work to make their relationship successful. Gottman’s principles for successful marriage include turning toward each other instead of away, letting your partner influence you, moving through conflict and creating shared meaning. 2000, Three Rivers PressA 50 Greatest Self Help Book

 


The Sex-Starved Marriage by Michele Weiner DavisThe Sex-Starved Marriage: A Couple's Guide to Boosting Their Marriage Libido
Michele Weiner Davis

Candid and sensible counsel for couples with mismatched libidos. She looks at the problem of low sexual desire from a couples’ perspective. Both the low desire partner and the higher desire partner will find useful exercises to help bridge the desire gap and restore intimacy and friendship to the marriage. This self help book includes many moving first-hand accounts of couples who have struggled with the erosion of desire and have rebuilt their passionate connection. 2003, Simon & Schuster


Slow SexSlow Sex: The Art and Craft of the Female Orgasm
Nicole Daedone

This life-changing guide teaches both men and women how to use the practice of Orgasmic Meditation to slow down, connect emotionally, and allow authentic female sexual satisfaction to occur. The book asserts that, with practice, every woman can become truly orgasmic. Slow Sex encourages the enjoyment of daily intimacy, and asserts that paying attention is the foundation of pleasure. 2011, Grand Central Life & Style


SpousonomicsSpousonomics: Using Economics to Master Love, Marriage, and Dirty Dishes
Paula Szuchman and Jenny Anderson

During pre-crash 2008, Szuchman and Anderson came up with a novel idea: write a book about marriage, using economic principles to resolve common conflicts. Lesson One: overconfidence contributes not just to booms and busts in the wider economy, but booms and busts in marriage, too. Lesson Two: sex often comes down to a simple question of supply and demand -- a smart incentive can get your spouse to do almost anything you want (almost). Another insight from behavioral economics: due to the principle of “loss aversion” we will do almost anything to keep from losing, which is why two-thirds of married couples keep fighting even when they know it’s “a losing battle.” This interesting take on married life is filled with useful wisdom. 2011, Random House


Stop Running from Love by Dusty MillerStop Running from Love: Five Steps to Overcoming Emotional Distancing and Fear of Intimacy
Dusty Miller

Stop Running from Love presents a clear, step-by-step approach emotional distancers can use to move beyond their fear of intimacy and start building strong and lasting relationships. Exercises and self-evaluations help you become aware of how you operate in romantic relationships. You'll review and reassess your relationship patterns, deciding what changes you want to make. You'll learn how to engage with your partner to create a positive new relationship dynamic. 2008, New Harbinger


Take Back Your Marriage by William J. DohertyTake Back Your Marriage: Sticking Together in a World that Pulls Us Apart
William J. Doherty

This self help book helps couples pinpoint hidden marital problems and take positive steps to stay close and connected everyday. Readers learn to break free of such common traps as confusing desires with needs, drifting apart without working on the relationship, or becoming over-time parents instread of full-time partners. This book shows how to fight back to restore a marriage worth saving.  2003, The Guilford Press


Uncoupling by Dianne VaughanUncoupling: Turning Points in Intimate Relationships
Dianne Vaughan

Based on ten years of research, Uncoupling examines the break-up of relationships and identifies the key steps in uncoupling -- from both partners’ points of view. This self help book is invaluable because it normalizes a universal experience often viewed as unique by the participants and because it will help those in the early stages of uncoupling to identify what is happening, enabling them to take the steps necessary to avoid the final breakdown of the relationship. 1990, Vintage


Undefended LoveUndefended Love
Jett Psaris and Marlena S. Lyons

The path to true intimacy is a difficult one. In this self help book, two psychotherapists teach that everyone has the capacity to love without defenses or qualifications and to know themselves so deeply that real intimacy becomes a lifelong expression of their deepest nature. Problems and conflicts that inevitably arise in relationships can become opportunities for a deeper connection. Through illuminating case studies, guided self-inquiries, and challenging exercises, readers learn to engage in a deeper dialogue with their partners, express profound aspects of their nature, and discover that undefended loving can bolster inner strengths they never knew they had. 2000, New Harbinger Publications


We Can Work It Out by Clifford Notarius; Howard MarkmanWe Can Work It Out: How to Solve Conflicts, Save Your Marriage
Clifford Notarius; Howard Markman

Based on national studies of more than one thousand couples, this three-part program guarantees that each partner's feelings can be expressed and understood, and helps couples identify personal factors and underlying principles that can create their successful marriage. 1994, Perigee Trade


When Anger Hurts Your Relationship by Kim Palet and Matthew McKayWhen Anger Hurts Your Relationship: 10 Simple Solutions for Couples Who Fight
Kim Paleg, Matthew McKay

Psychologists Paleg and McKay pinpoint pain and a resulting sense of helplessness as the roots of anger. By outlining individuals' and couples' basic cycles of hurt and anger, the authors show how to break the old cycles. Focusing on preventing escalation, managing anger when it arises and repairing the situation after an old pattern takes hold, they suggest a one-day-at-a-time process of swearing off anger (via tension-release exercises, practicing empathy and identifying defensiveness), learning de-escalation tools (a Repair Checklist, an Anger Coping Plan) and regaining trust (by changing speech habits and concertedly giving pleasure). 2001, New Harbinger


When Someone You Love is Depressed by laura Rosen and Xavier AmadorWhen Someone You Love Is Depressed
Laura Rosen and Xavier Amador

Psychologists Rosen and Amador explain the mechanisms of depression that can cause communication breakdown, increase hostility, and ultimately destroy relationships. They teach concrete methods that you and your loved one can use to protect yourself and your relationship from depression’s impact. They give sensitive guidance about how to recognize your needs, how to provide the best kind of support, and how to encourage the depressed person to seek treatment. 1997, Free Press


Why Can't You Read My Mind by Jeffrey Bernstein; Susan MageeWhy Can't You Read My Mind? Overcoming the 9 Toxic Thought Patterns that Get in the Way of a Loving Relationship
Jeffrey Bernstein; Susan Magee

Bernstein and Magee offer partners a way to renew the spark in their relationships in this succinct self-help guide. They claim that one of the most significant steps is to focus on yourself rather than your partner by ridding yourself of toxic thoughts -- "negative thoughts that have lost their basis in reality and have gotten out of control." Examining nine toxic thought patterns (such as jumping to conclusions, labeling one another and playing the "blame game"), the authors provide well-researched explanations, relevant examples and practical alternatives to transform negative thoughts and behaviors into positive and constructive ones. 2003, Da Capo Press


Why Marriages Succeed or Fail by John GottmanWhy Marriages Succeed or Fail: And How You Can Make Yours Last
John Gottman

Researcher Gottman found that healthy marriages were those in which couples were able to resolve conflicts through one of three styles of problem solving: validating, conflict avoiding and volatile. This self help book offers a four-step program for breaking through negativity and allowing one’s natural problem solving abilities to flourish. 1995, Simon & Schuster


Why Talking is Not enough by susan pageWhy Talking Is Not Enough: 8 Loving Actions That Will Transform Your Marriage
Susan Page

Susan Page presents a novel relationship strategy based on subtle, powerful changes in your own actions. Her pioneering 8-step program invites you to give up problem solving and move directly to a warmer, more loving and fun relationship, based on universal spiritual principles. 2007, Jossey-Bass


Intimate Relationships: Relationship Advice Self Help Resources

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