Learn to Love: Guide to Healing Your Disappointing Love Life by Dr Thomas Jordan
|Learn to Love: Guide to Healing Your Disappointing Love Life by Dr Thomas Jordan|
|Reviewer: Sue Magee|
|Summary: A book about love relationships, how to unlearn bad habits and learn new ones. It's thought-provoking and enlightening in equal measures. Highly recommended.|
|Buy? Yes||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 132||Date: December 2019|
|External links: Author's website|
Learn to Love: Guide to Healing Your Disappointing Love Life is a book about love relationships rather than a book about love. The two greatest emotions are love and grief and love is the opposite of grief: if you love, Dr Thomas Jordan tells us, you will inevitably grieve. Your love relationships begin the moment you're born and end only when you die. Whilst we all come into the world hoping to give and receive love there are many people for whom love is not quite so simple. Some people suffer multiple disappointments - sometimes repeating the same mistakes - and this eventually becomes resignation. For people who are making the same mistakes repeatedly, self-preservation, in the form of resignation is a necessity.
It's simplistic to think that our love lives only begin in adolescence: our earliest experience of love begins with our parents, or those in loco parentis. We learn about love relationships by observing them, by being in one, or by receiving instruction. What we've learned about love relationships translates into an unconscious blueprint for how to relate in love.
We replicate what is familiar in our experience of the interpersonal relationships in our love lives.
It's strange how often a child forms a love relationship with someone who physically resembles a parent. And so the problems of one generation are replicated in the next. A child who has seen his parents being abused and/or abusive will replicate this in his or her own relationships. Cheating is seen as normal. And so it continues: Jordan details ten areas where problems are repeated and shows how they affect the relationships.
If we are to have sound love relationships we need to ensure that the relationships we form are healthy enough to nurture and sustain the love we feel. The emotion in itself is insufficient.
Jordan shows us how to recognise the unhealthy practices we've learned and then how to unlearn them and replace them with practices which will form healthy relationships: he even - at the end of the book - gives us a 'recipe' for a healthy relationship.
Learn to Love should be a quick read, but it's heavy on content and if you're serious about making changes you will have to do a lot of homework, a lot of honest thinking. I started the book with a culprit in mind - an abusive, controlling parent - but was shocked to find that my experiences as a 'victim' had not left me immune to the expectation that I could control. From thinking that the book would vindicate me, I came to the conclusion that there were quite a few areas where I could - must - make improvements.
The book concentrates on 'love' life - intimate personal relationships - but I found myself considering my friendships and how my own experiences affected those relationships and I've areas I need to work on there too. This is one of the most thought-provoking books I've read for a long time. There were areas which I found painful, and I found a well of anger which I hadn't appreciated was there, and which needs to be emptied.
I did think I was going to have a criticism of the book: I really wanted to read some examples of relationships, but Jordan is a clinical psychologist and on reflection, I was rather glad that we didn't get to hear what he'd been told by his clients. But then he went one better - he gave a lot of details about his own love life, how his relationship with his mother had affected him and what he had to do to correct matters.
I'd like to thank the publisher for sending a copy to the Bookbag: it was a fascinating, enlightening read and one to which I'll return.
For some fiction on the subject we can recommend Learn Love in a Week by Andrew Clover. If you need help in unlearning some bad habits, have a look at Tiny Habits: The Small Changes That Change Everything by B J Fogg.
You can read more about Dr Thomas Jordan here.
You can read more book reviews or buy Learn to Love: Guide to Healing Your Disappointing Love Life by Dr Thomas Jordan at Amazon.co.uk
You can read more book reviews or buy Learn to Love: Guide to Healing Your Disappointing Love Life by Dr Thomas Jordan at Amazon.com.
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