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General :
The case against Esther Perel - why?

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gmc94 ( member #62810) posted at 8:05 AM on Thursday, November 25th, 2021

When ChamomileTea and I both slam her, I'm thinking it's not an R vs D or how you view your own WS thing, lol.

a-friggin-men

M >25yrs/grown kids
DD1 1994 ONS prostitute
DD2 2018 exGF1 10+yrEA & 10yrPA... + exGF2 EA forever & "made out" 2017
9/18 WH hung himself- died but revived

It's rude to say "I love you" with a mouthful of lies

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id 8700106
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Trdd ( member #65989) posted at 12:34 PM on Thursday, November 25th, 2021

Perel clearly has parts of her thinking that work for some but not others. SI is the same way, isn't it? How many people come here and leave after 2 posts? Yet others stay and remain active for years.

posts: 405   ·   registered: Aug. 27th, 2018   ·   location: US
id 8700117
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ISurvivedSoFar ( member #56915) posted at 1:36 PM on Thursday, November 25th, 2021

She could redeem herself if she simply said that marriages hit rough patches and sometimes that leads to infidelity. The person who is unfaithful is too selfish and unwilling to face those rough patches head on and instead escapes and ruins the relationships they cultivated. She could go further an say that both parties are in the M and therefore it is unacceptable to abandon your vows and give into temptation. That's not what she says.

I recall early on buying into what she was saying. I totally blamed myself for my H's infidelity - the voice recorder in my head said "What did you do now ISSF, what did you do now?" Looking back I wish I heard her say that it is never the betrayed spouse's fault - that the wayward has choices and is obligated to be honest to their spouse. I wish she would put in the caveat that it is never okay to break a vow and ruin the sanctity of marriage causing unbelievable damage.

Then she can go on and dissect the psyche of each party. She doesn't do that. She walks right in and says that infidelity is understandable under some conditions. To me that makes her NOT a credible authority on infidelity.

DDay Nov '16
Me: BS, a.k.a. MommaDom, Him: WS
2 DD's: one adult, one teen,1 DS: adult
Surviving means we promise ourselves we will get to the point where we can receive love and give love again.

posts: 2647   ·   registered: Jan. 15th, 2017
id 8700122
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Hippo16 ( member #52440) posted at 2:32 PM on Thursday, November 25th, 2021

Nice summary by ISurvivedSoFar

Then she can go on and dissect the psyche of each party. She doesn't do that. She walks right in and says that infidelity is understandable under some conditions. To me that makes her NOT a credible authority on infidelity.

which also implicitly says it is ok to void your marriage vows -

Not Just Friends

posts: 567   ·   registered: Mar. 26th, 2016   ·   location: OBX
id 8700129
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Notaboringwife ( member #74302) posted at 8:11 PM on Thursday, November 25th, 2021

To me that makes her NOT a credible authority on infidelity.

My ex wayward husband and I both watched her youtube presentations on infidelity. We have not read her books. She is profoundly well spoken, articulate and seems to find the exact words to explain her understanding of infidelity. And some of it makes sense.

BUT UNLESS one has experienced first hand infidelity with all of its fallouts, in other words, has been a wayward spouse or a betrayed spouse...well sorry, but for me, the well presented and well intentioned, "facts, guidelines, suggestions, recommendations" etc. of such authors, therapists falls on my deaf ears. They have little credibility.

For this reason, I chose to stick with folks, therapists who are living through, have lived through it, and who share in their successes and setbacks and give advice and support and encouragement. IMHO.

Of course, if Ms. Perel was a fBS or fWS my humble opinion would change...Was she ever?

It's your road & yours alone. Others may walk it with you, but no one can walk it for you. Though nobody can go back and make a new beginning... you can start over and make a new ending.

posts: 247   ·   registered: Apr. 24th, 2020
id 8700186
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DragnHeart ( member #32122) posted at 8:51 PM on Thursday, November 25th, 2021

I wanted to refresh my memory with her stuff. Watched some videos.

She comes off with the attitude that the wayward is a poor soul void of feeling alive and needs that outside excitement, hell we ALL need that outside excitement to live. FFS. And the hinting that no one is monogamous of you've had more than one relationship crap pissed me off.

Comparing my multiple relationships where i was devoted to THAT ONE PERSON to the multiple side pieces my husband has had DURING OUR MARRIAGE is bullshit!

IF needing a constant revolving door of partners to live a full and satisfied life is what "relationships" are supposed to be then ill happily be single til the day i die. Geez there are animals that pair bond for life. Humans should be capable of the same.

Me: BS 44 nowWH: 35 almost 36 (BrokenHeart911)Four little dragons.Met 2006. Married 2008. Dday of LTPA with co worker October 19th 2010. Knew about EA with ow1 before that.Full disclosure March 8th 2019 four AP's.

posts: 22354   ·   registered: May. 10th, 2011   ·   location: Canada
id 8700192
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 Repossessed (original poster member #79544) posted at 9:42 PM on Thursday, November 25th, 2021

hell we ALL need that outside excitement to live. FFS.

HA! It's catching on.

Here to keep myself mindful that I don't always see what actually is. I certainly didn't when I married her.

posts: 57   ·   registered: Nov. 1st, 2021   ·   location: Chicagoland
id 8700197
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DragnHeart ( member #32122) posted at 10:08 PM on Thursday, November 25th, 2021

In my opinion she implies that no one is capable or should be expected to be monogamous.

That a constant state of excitement is the main goal of life and that people are entitled to want that.

People sure are entitled thats for sure but i don't see this constant need for new and exciting to ever be fulfilling. Eventually EVERY relationship becomes the same old same old.

The fact is external validation will never be enough and happiness comes from Within.

Me: BS 44 nowWH: 35 almost 36 (BrokenHeart911)Four little dragons.Met 2006. Married 2008. Dday of LTPA with co worker October 19th 2010. Knew about EA with ow1 before that.Full disclosure March 8th 2019 four AP's.

posts: 22354   ·   registered: May. 10th, 2011   ·   location: Canada
id 8700200
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RealityBlows ( member #41108) posted at 2:50 AM on Friday, November 26th, 2021

the wayward is a poor soul void of feeling alive and needs that outside excitement, hell we ALL need that outside excitement to live

Yep, we all do, but not all of us lean solely into extreme and destructive vice to sustain us.

Affairs are a destructive drug like Meth. Gives you a brief escape with lifelong consequences and innocent casualties.

Life offers an infinite array of healthy, low collateral casualty rate alternative highs to sustain you unless you're a bottomless pit of discontent.

Affairs are a lazy way for people lacking imagination to seek fulfillment.

[This message edited by RealityBlows at 2:52 AM, Friday, November 26th]

posts: 731   ·   registered: Oct. 25th, 2013
id 8700220
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jb3199 ( member #27673) posted at 7:19 PM on Friday, November 26th, 2021

That a constant state of excitement is the main goal of life and that people are entitled to want that.

This is one thing that appears, at least to me, as an underlying tone/belief of hers.

The words 'desire' and 'passion' are often used, and in proper context, are not bad things in a marriage....in levels of moderation. But there is a point in every monogamous relationship, in my opinion, where this becomes detrimental. Passion and desire are the superficials; it is the responsible emotions that build the deep love and respect in a relationship. Working hard to provide; discussing the good AND bad issues with an agreeable solution as the goal; taking your partner's issues at hand as importantly as your own---they may not be 'sexy', but they have depth. Passion and desire are almost escapist in the context I've heard from her. And maybe these could have a little more priority in a marriage, but again, in my opinion, not until the marriage is on VERY solid ground.

There's a big difference of a couple who have not had infidelity in their marriage, looking to 'spice it up' versus a marriage that has been rocked with infidelity. I think stability would take priority over excitement.

BH-50s
WW-50s
2 boys
Married 28yrs.(together over 30yrs.)

All work and no play has just cost me my wife--Gary Puckett
D-Day(s): Enough
Accepting that I can/may end this marriage 7/2/14

posts: 3853   ·   registered: Feb. 21st, 2010   ·   location: northeast
id 8700404
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straightup ( new member #78778) posted at 7:47 PM on Friday, November 26th, 2021

I think some of her language and tone comes from a line of thinking which was common enough in humanities and social science faculties at universities, at least when I was there in the early 90’s. It was a spin off from French thinkers like Lacan, Focault, Derrida etc. In short, cultural studies / postmodernism. Words like desire, difference (with an a), transgression. Too many used that stuff to sound clever whilst smoking dope.

I watched and read about an interview between Chomsky and Foucault once. Many would dislike both, but a difference was evident. Chomsky was political and wanted to make a difference. Focault wanted to subvert things, it was all a game for the Uber-intelligent to him.

I can’t help but think Esther is trying to put an intellectual veneer on things. The insights she has come from her clinical experience and humanity. The veneer sends it off kilter at times.

If you are honest and sincere people may deceive you. Be honest and sincere anyway.
What you spend years creating, others could destroy overnight. Create anyway.
Mother Teresa

posts: 29   ·   registered: May. 11th, 2021   ·   location: Australia
id 8700410
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 Repossessed (original poster member #79544) posted at 9:56 PM on Friday, November 26th, 2021

So I get some people's disdain for her. She has used language that triggers. Different strokes for different folks. And for the record, I'm in the D camp. I think its the card a Betrayed ought to pull first whether they want Divorce or not. I believe "overwhelming initial force" reveals what you're dealing with instead dying the death of thousands of cuts during false R. My opinion biased by my experience.

However, was just watching "The SECRET To DESIRE In A Long-Term Relationship with Esther Perel & Lewis Howes" on youtube and I gotta say, there was nothing intellectually pretentious about her that I could see. I was, in fact, surprised when she said, and I'm paraphrasing, that she's had it with the over-the-top pursuit of individual gratification in an LTR. And that finding one's self while in an LTR is in part predicated and defined by your relationship with your SO.

Who knows; maybe she's "evolving."

Here to keep myself mindful that I don't always see what actually is. I certainly didn't when I married her.

posts: 57   ·   registered: Nov. 1st, 2021   ·   location: Chicagoland
id 8700425
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