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Therapy As Relationship


Book Title:

The Love Cure: Therapy Erotic and Sexual. Putnam, CT: Spring Publications, 1996.

It has become "politically correct" to view every manifestation of erotic feelings in therapy as "forbidden" and "inappropriate." In my experience, whenever therapy "works" it has a powerful erotic component. Instead of running away from erotic feelings in therapy, we have to learn to understand them.

This book describes the nature of effective therapy as a special kind of love or "empathy" in which therapist and patient are powerfully drawn toward oneness. But to be effective, this oneness has to be balanced by a kind of "distance."

In their oneness, therapist and patient become powerfully meaningful for one another. By means of their distance, the therapist is able to articulate and value the deep identity of the patient. It is this recognition and "mirroring" which effects the cure.

Related materials:

  1. Erotic Therapy and the Shape of Eros
    Chapter One of The Love Cure. Describes various kinds of erotic experience, why we misunderstand one another when we talk about eros, and the centrality of eros in therapy.

  2. Where Are Our Boundaries?
    Chapter Two. Discusses one instance of "sexual acting out" to see what the patient needed, what the doctor missed, and how the language of "boundaries" gets in our way of understanding this process.

  3. Depression and Soul-Loss
    Not part of The Love Cure. Another discussion of the importance of intimacy in therapy.


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