Resilient Marriages

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Resilience has come to rival insight as a fundamental therapeutic goal in bettering the lives of individuals in distress. And it is increasingly an important topic in fields as diverse as education, sociology, and family studies. Yet despite all the recent interest up to now few in-depth studies have appeared. This book is a moving ethnography of five couples whose marriages survived over many years and ultimately transcended a partner's alchoholism. The couple's stories are poignant, full of wisdom and carrying important lessons. The author's insightful analysis sheds light on three recurring themes: residual resources, moments of choice, and building trust. This book makes a significant contribution to our understanding of what makes relationships last over a course of many years or a lifetime, while serving as an engaging supplementary text for courses in family studies, psychology, and sociology.

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Editorial Reviews

Annette Lareau
One of the great mysteries of life is how some marriages manage to be resilient, and rewarding, while others fail. In this wonderful book, Karen Shirley takes us inside the world of marriage and shows, in vivid detail, the experience of husbands and wives where there was a major life crisis. Never simplistic, it is especially valuable for the wide group of individuals experiencing the ups and downs of marital life who are interested in gaining insight of how to make their own marriages better.
Barbara Krasner
Resilient Marriages, elicited from accounts of ordinary people, is realistic and resourceful, compelling and complex. Sobriety and relational growth are its organic subtext. Its long-term vision beckons each of us to move from blame to choice, from punishment to treatment, and from hopelessness to fairness. Shirley has provided a lens that is respectful of people’s efforts, honest about their limitations and productive in terms of evolving growth and earning trust.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780847693825
  • Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
  • Publication date: 3/28/2000
  • Pages: 222
  • Product dimensions: 0.63 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 6.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Karen Shirley, Ph.D., teaches adult literacy in Philadelphia

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Table of Contents

Chapter 1 Resiliency: An Introduction to the Process Part 2 The Gundersons: From Survival to Striking Gold Chapter 3 Good Moments in the Midst of Bad Chapter 4 “It’s a Two-Sided Thing” Chapter 5 Not Perfect, But Very Good Part 6 The Royers: Endurance Chapter 7 Never Expecting Anything Chapter 8 “I Wouldn’t Call It Healing” Chapter 9 Hidden Resources? Part 10 The Bertolinos: Passion, Volatility, and Devotion Chapter 11 Finding a Soul: Two Survivors Chapter 12 Getting Closer by Inches Chapter 13 Blessed in the Midst of Love and Regret Part 14 The Abbotts: Victim, Victimizer, Victory Chapter 15 Exquisitely in Love and Balanced on the Knife’s Edge Chapter 16 Insight is Not Enough: Therapy and Beyond Chapter 17 Renewal and Healing: The Mysterious Nature of Marriage Part 18 Lessons on Resiliency Part 19 Conclusion Part 20 Appendixes Chapter 21 Overview of Alcoholism, Alcoholics Anonimous, and Al-Anon Chapter 22 Alcoholism as a Disease and the Codependency Movement Chapter 23 Research Part 24 Suggested Resources for Clinicians Part 25 Bibliography Part 26 Index Part 27 About the Author

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