Discovering 35 Quotes From Esther Perel

Published on Jun 18,2021 02:34 AM

Esther Perel is a world-renowned relationship therapist, bestselling author and sought-after speaker, who has focused his career on exploring the role of sex and eroticism in creation. build and break intimate relationships.

She has an incredible worldview of relationships across many different cultures, which has allowed her to see what works and what doesn't work on a larger level.

She grew up among the Holocaust survivors of Antwerp, and noted two groups around her: "the non-dead and the resurrected". She commented that "people who are not dead are people who live tightly to the ground, fear, distrust. The world of danger and joy is not an option. You cannot play, take risks. or be creative when you don't have the minimum level of safety, because you need a degree of non-alertness in order to experience excitement and pleasure. The resurrection are people who understand porn as a cure. antidote to death."

Psychotherapist Esther Perel knows how to work in a room. Since the publication of her first book, "Mating in Captivity" in 2006, she has traveled the world, telling the audience about love, sex, intimacy, and unfaithfulness: things the worst of romantic life. (Those who didn't get a chance to watch her live can watch her on stage, where her videos, subtitled in more than thirty languages, have been viewed tens of millions of times.) raised in Antwerp as the daughter of Holocaust massacre survivors, starting as a family therapist, focusing on trauma issues and cultural conflict. Couples became her clinical and theoretical specialties. With a style marked by humor, frankness, and empathy, Perel's talks and books take an counterintuitive approach to answering provocative questions: How did the romantic couple turn into the main organizational unit in society? Can the romantic desire really be sustained? Is unfaithfulness never a good thing?

She also notes that the ideals of modern marriage are often contradictory: "We want the person we choose to provide stability, security, predictability and trustworthiness - all experiences that are anchored. And we want that person to deliver wonder, mystery, adventure, and risk." Perel called for a more open and honest discussion of monogamy to reconcile conflict between pornography and domestic.

Here are some quotes from her

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1. “For [erotically intelligent couples], love is a vessel that contains both security and adventure, and commitment offers one of the great luxuries of life: time. Marriage is not the end of romance, it is the beginning. They know that they have years in which to deepen their connection, to experiment, to regress, and even to fail. They see their relationship as something alive and ongoing, not a fait accompli. It’s a story that they are writing together, one with many chapters, and neither partner knows how it will end. There’s always a place they haven’t gone yet, always something about the other still to be discovered.”

2. “Today, we turn to one person to provide what an entire village once did: a sense of grounding, meaning, and continuity. At the same time, we expect our committed relationships to be romantic as well as emotionally and sexually fulfilling. Is it any wonder that so many relationships crumble under the weight of it all?”

3. “Love rests on two pillars: surrender and autonomy. Our need for togetherness exists alongside our need for separateness.”

4. “Love enjoys knowing everything about you; desire needs mystery. Love likes to shrink the distance that exists between me and you, while desire is energized by it. If intimacy grows through repetition and familiarity, eroticism is numbed by repetition. It thrives on the mysterious, the novel, and the unexpected. Love is about having; desire is about wanting. An expression of longing, desire requires ongoing elusiveness. It is less concerned with where it has already been than passionate about where it can still go. But too often, as couples settle into the comforts of love, they cease to fan the flame of desire. They forget that fire needs air.”

5. “Love is a vessel that contains both security and adventure, and commitment offers one of the great luxuries of life: time. Marriage is not the end of romance, it is the beginning.”

6. “Our partner's sexuality does not belong to us. It isn't just for and about us, and we should not assume that it rightfully falls within our jurisdiction.”

7. “The grand illusion of committed love is that we think our partners are ours. In truth, their separateness is unassailable, and their mystery is forever ungraspable. As soon as we can begin to acknowledge this, sustained desire becomes a real possibility. It’s remarkable to me how a sudden threat to the status quo (an affair, an infatuation, a prolonged absence, or even a really good fight) can suddenly ignite desire. There’s nothing like the fear of loss to make those old shoes look new again.”

8. “It’s hard to feel attracted to someone who has abandoned her sense of autonomy.”

9. “Beginnings are always ripe with possibilities, for they hold the promise of completion. Through love we imagine a new way of being. You see me as I’ve never seen myself. You airbrush my imperfections, and I like what you see. With you, and through you, I will become that which I long to be. I will become whole. Being chosen by the one you chose is one of the glories of falling in love. It generates a feeling of intense personal importance. I matter. You confirm my significance.”

10. “The quality of your life ultimately depends on the quality of your relationships . . . which are basically a reflection of your sense of decency, your ability to think of others, your generosity.”

11. “We are afraid that our adult sexuality will somehow damage our kids, that it’s inappropriate or dangerous. But whom are we protecting? Children who see their primary caregivers at ease expressing their affection (discreetly, within appropriate boundaries) are more likely to embrace sexuality with the healthy combination of respect, responsibility, and curiosity it deserves. By censoring our sexuality, curbing our desires, or renouncing them altogether, we hand our inhibitions intact to the next generation.”

12. “Trouble looms when monogamy is no longer a free expression of loyalty but a form of enforced compliance.”

13. “Eroticism thrives in the space between the self and the other.”

14. “Love is at once an affirmation and a transcendence of who we are.”

15. “Monogamy, it follows, is the sacred cow of the romantic ideal, for it is the marker of our specialness: I have been chosen and others renounced. When you turn your back on other loves, you confirm my uniqueness; when your hand or mind wanders, my importance is shattered. Conversely, if I no longer feel special, my own hands and mind tingle with curiosity. The disillusioned are prone to roam. Might someone else restore my significance”

16. “We're walking contradictions, seeking safety and predictability on one hand and thriving on diversity on the other.”

17. “It's hard to experience desire when you're weighted down by concern.”

18. “We expect one person to give us what once an entire village used to provide, and we live twice as long.”

19. “Proust, “The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes.”

20. “We no longer plow the land together; today we talk. We have come to glorify verbal communication. I speak; therefore I am. We naively believe that the essence of who we are is most accurately conveyed through words.”

21. “Like dreams and works of art, fantasies are far more than what they appear to be on the surface. They’re complex psychic creations whose symbolic content mustn’t be translated into literal intent. “Think poetry, not prose,”

22. “We used to moralize; today we normalize, and performance anxiety is the secular version of our old religious guilt.”

23. “In my work, I see couples who no longer wait for an invitation into their partner's interiority, but instead demand admittance, as if they are entitled to unrestricted access into the private thoughts of their loved ones”

24. “Despite a 50 percent divorce rate for first marriages and 65 percent the second time around; despite the staggering frequency of affairs; despite the fact that monogamy is a ship sinking faster than anyone can bail it out, we continue to cling to the wreckage with absolute faith in its structural soundness.”

25. “The extended family, the community, and religion may indeed have limited our freedom, sexual and otherwise, but in return they offered us a much-needed sense of belonging. For generations, these traditional institutions provided order, meaning, continuity, and social support. Dismantling them has left us with more choices and fewer restrictions than ever. We are freer, but also more alone. As Giddens describes it, we have become ontologically more anxious.”

26. “The “symptom” theory goes as follows: An affair simply alerts us to a preexisting condition, either a troubled relationship or a troubled person.”

27. “And what is true for human beings is true for every living thing: all organisms require alternating periods of growth and equilibrium. Any person or system exposed to ceaseless novelty and change risks falling into chaos; but one that is too rigid or static ceases to grow and eventually dies. This never-ending dance between change and stability is like the anchor and the waves. Adult relationships mirror these dynamics all too well. We seek a steady, reliable anchor in our partner. Yet at the same time we expect love to offer a transcendent experience that will allow us to soar beyond our ordinary lives. The challenge for modern couples lies in reconciling the need for what’s safe and predictable with the wish to pursue what’s exciting, mysterious, and awe-inspiring.”

28. “The shift from shame to guilt is crucial. Shame is a state of of self-absorption, while guilt is an emphatic, relational response, inspired by the hurt you have caused another.”

29. “We don't like to be intimate alone. Some couples take this one step further, confusing intimacy with control. What passes for care is actually convert surveillance. ..When the impulse to share becomes obligatory, when personal boundaries are no longer respected, when only the shared space of togetherness is acknowledged and private space is denied, fusion replaces intimacy and possession co-opts love.”

30. “Today, our sexuality is an open-ended personal project; it is part of who we are, an identity, and no longer merely something we do.”

31. “Where there is nothing left to hide, there is nothing left to seek.”

32. “there is more than a hint of arrogance in the assumption that we can make our relationships permanent,”

33. “It takes two people to create a pattern, but only one to change it.”

34. “because the erotic frisson is such that the kiss that you only imagine giving,can be as powerful and as enchanting as hours of actual lovemaking. As Marcel Proust said, it's our imagination that is responsible for love, not the other person.”

35. “But when we reduce the conversation to simply passing judgment, we are left with no conversation at all.”

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Perel is the host of two podcasts: Where should we start? and How does it work?

Where should we start? Takes the listener into Perel's therapist's office as she sees anonymous couples searching for insight into everything from adultery, unintentionality to grief. The unique format combines live recordings of the session, with Perel's reflections on what she has heard and the techniques she has tried. "It's more like an unraveled mystery than a relationship counseling program," The New York Times wrote. Pairs include heterosexual and homosexual couples. The first episode aired on Audible in May 2017 and was publicly announced on iTunes on October 9, 2017. The three seasons have been released since December 2019. Where should we start? received the Gracie Award 2018.

How was that work? is Perel's second podcast. It follows the same format as the couple session in Where should we start? - but this time, the couple seeks Perel's advice as a co-founder or colleague, navigating the challenges that arise in work relationships. HuffPost describes each episode as a "one-time therapy session between Perel and the various co-founders, family business members, and partners with a thriving performance but working relationships are in the works deteriorated." As described in a review: "Podcasts aim to illuminate the things that shape us as individuals and how they relate to our workplace life. Say, a lot of people consider their careers and workplace relationships intimately and closely when they work on their romantic relationships created by Gimlet Media and available only on Spotify. The show first aired in November 2019.