The Dance of Connection: How to Talk to Someone When You're Mad, Hurt, Scared, Frustrated, Insulted, Betrayed, or Desperate

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9780060196387: The Dance of Connection: How to Talk to Someone When You're Mad, Hurt, Scared, Frustrated, Insulted, Betrayed, or Desperate

Bestselling author Harriet Lerner focuses on the challenge and the importance of being able to express one's "authentic voice" in intimate relationships.

The key problem in relationships, particularly over time, is that people begin to lose their voice. Despite decades of assertiveness training and lots of good advice about communicating with clarity, timing, and tact, women and men find that their greatest complaints in marriage and other intimate relationships are that they are not being heard, that they cannot affect the other person, that fights go nowhere, that conflict brings only pain. Although an intimate, long-term relationship offers the greatest possibilities for knowing the other person and being known, these relationships are also fertile ground for silence and frustration when it comes to articulating a true self. And yet giving voice to this self is at the center of having both a relationship and a self. Much as she did in THE MOTHER DANCE, Lerner will approach this rich subject with tales from her personal life and clinical work, inspiring and teaching readers to speak their own truths to the most important people in their lives.

 


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From the Back Cover:

In her most profound book yet, Dr. Harriet Lerner takes us beyond The Dance of Anger and shows us how to "find our voice" with the people who matter the most. With wit and wisdom, Lerner shows us how to "set things right" and heal the most painful disconnections. The Dance of Connection tackles the most difficult problems we face with the people who hurt us:

  • What is the "two step" that will transform any conversation?

  • How do we find our voice when we are rejected or cut off? And why won't the person who has harmed us apologize?

  • How do we take a conversation to the next level when we feel desperate?

  • What positive steps can we take when the other person is wearing us down with criticism, negativity, excuses, demands, or irresponsible behavior?

  • How do we put an insensitive parent on the hot seat?

Lerner reveals a startling new definition of what it means to have an "authentic voice" -- one that runs counter to the automatic ways we try to speak our truths. The Dance of Connection goes beyond "communication techniques" to provide bold and innovative "voice lessons." Lerner tells us when to lighten up and let things go, and when we need to take specific steps to heal betrayals, inequalities, and broken connections, Whether we're hurting in marriage, family, or friendship, we learn how to speak with honor and personal integrity even when the other person behaves badly -- or won't talk at all.

Our capacity for creativity, vitality, and joy depend on connecting well with the key people in our lives. Lerner teaches us how to navigate our most difficult relationships with integrity, courage, and joyous conviction.

About the Author:

Harriet Lerner, Ph.D., is one of our nation’s most loved and respected relationship experts. Renowned for her work on the psychology of women and family relationships, she served as a staff psychologist at the Menninger Clinic for more than two decades. A distinguished lecturer, workshop leader, and psychotherapist, she is the author of The Dance of Anger and other bestselling books. She is also, with her sister, an award-winning children's book writer. She and her husband are therapists in Lawrence, Kansas, and have two sons.

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Harriet Lerner
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