Mating in Captivity: Reconciling the Erotic and the Domestic
One of the world's most respected voices on erotic intelligence, Esther Perel offers a bold, provocative new take on intimacy and sex. Mating in Captivity invites us to explore the paradoxical union of domesticity and sexual desire, and explains what it takes to bring lust home.
Drawing on more than twenty years of experience as a couples therapist, Perel examines the c...more
It tells you how to have the security, stability, comfort, etc that are requirements for a healthy a LT relationship while at the same time creating the uncertainty, mystery, and risk that are requirements for passion.
The author is a therapist in NY and draws on cases to illustrate her points. It's engaging, the topic is fascinating, and Perel has some refreshingly smart suggestions for maintaining or rec ...more
On a crowded bus last week, my eight year old son couldn't help but inquire about the title of Esther Perel's debut book, "Mating in Captivity : Reconciling the Erotic and the Domestic." What's "mating" mean, dad? And "cap-tiv-i-ty?" With numerous ears besides his own eager to hear my reply, I resorted to cheap humor that passed by him as surely as hot sex passes by Perel's patients throughout this book. "Mating." I told him, "is finding someone to love an ...more
No one's ever asked me that before.
Sex is simple—two people (occasionally more), in the same time, in the same place, with the same idea—that's all it is, all ...more
But, unfortunately, it really falls short. Because while the author gives numerous anecdotal accounts of how this couple or that was able to reignite the f ...more
I quit. I don't need a book to make me second-guess and doubt the happiest aspect of my life.
"The counterargument to the law of diminishing returns is the principle that consistent investment leads ...more
The basis of this book appears to be "familiarity breeds contempt." Emotional distance, according to the author, equals a better sex life and therefore better marriage. I found this wholly contradictory and I could not get on board with her "therapy" message. Honestly Perel com ...more
The idea that you should talk/share less, flirt with other men to create "safe" jealousy, and perhaps open your marriage up to other partners or dating other people....it just hardly ...more
There are a lot of eye-opening and counter intuitive insights in the book that if practiced, will reignite the engine of passion in a married life.
I highly recommend this book to everyone, not just couples.
The main argument of the book is this: intimacy begets comfort and boredom, distance unpredictability and excitement. Pretty commonsensical stuff, but when applied to marriage, it can be a powerful principle.
Most couples experience an increase in boredom as they become intimate and comfortable with each other and they start to yearn for the excitement. This transition is not only emotional but biological: a man's testosterone levels plummet after his wife giv ...more
I stopped reading after getting fed up with the name dropping, failure to back up her claims, and offering conflicting, and potentially damaging advice, in her book regarding relationships.
If you want a pop-sci self-help book that encourages infidelity, you might find comfort in this book. Otherwise I'd recommend staying away from this one.
Esther Perel, in "mating in captivity: unlocking ero ...more
I first learned about Esther Perel from a friend, and then from the New Yorker, where she is supposedly 'rethinking infidelity.'
Is she? Yes - but she's not telling anyone to cheat either. Perel just recognizes that there is a lot of unhappiness in monogamous couples, and a lot of sexual dysfunction.
So though she doesn't tell them to cheat, she may tell them to at least look in tha ...more
I'm looking forward to reading her second book, "The State of Affairs: Rethinking Infidelity".
If you're interested in the topic I highly recommend her two TED talks:
Rethinking Infidelity - a talk for anyone who has ever loved
The secret to desire in a long-term relationship
I was pleased to learn that is not the premise of the book.
I got a few takeaways:
First, like anything else in a relationship, there is a constant tension between connection and differentiation (when it comes to sex, the author calls these points of tension the erotic and the domestic). We have a desire fo ...more
The core issue that Perel addresses is the inherent tension between what are arguably our two greatest needs in a long-term romantic relationship: continued sexual chemistry and emotional safety. Because the former requ ...more
This book tackles the notion of eroticism and domesticity - how they interact and play out in longer term relationships. It discusses how sexual desire can fade over time, the reas ...more
What Perel does is undermine the more dumb-ass aspects of the Anglo-Saxon approach to psychological fidelity and relationships in favour of a more European view that permits play, calculated deceit and fantasy in a way that is really quite shocking to contemporary femino-liberalism. ...more
I am now going back to re-read because I've been reminded of it while I am reading "Sex at Dawn: How We Mate, Why We Stray, and What It Means for Modern Relationships."
In that book, ...more
* Takes the view that we put too much burden on our marriages these days. One person has to be everything... whereas it used to be that multiple people would fulfill different roles.
* Argues that intimacy can be the enemy of eroticism (somewhat counter to the prevailing orthodoxy, as I understand it), and that couples need to exist as separate peop ...more
Infidelity (or the threat of it) as a tool for marriage strengthening? Go fuck yourself, Perel.
[Negative stars! Anti-stars! Drop this book off a pier with cement shoes stars!]