A Family Systems Guide to Infidelity offers an explanatory model and concrete techniques, enabling therapists and counselors to treat the core of a couple’s relationship problems instead of merely applying a therapeutic bandage. Chapters give therapists proven techniques to help couples redevelop trust, rebalance power, increase satisfaction, and recover from the wounds that infidelity causes. This text uses case studies from clinical practice, examples of public or historical figures, and scenarios from popular movies to illustrate concepts, and it provides a systemic explanatory model for understanding infidelity, one that focuses on marital dissatisfaction, power imbalances, unfulfilled dreams, and the discovery of infidelity.
Table of Contents
1. Introduction and Overview 2. Historical Family Systems Review and Current State of the Art 3. Relationship Dissatisfaction: The Stock Market of Love 4. Power Imbalances: The See-Saw of Love in Relationships 5. The Death of the Dream, The Fantasy Unfulfilled, The Wish Un-Granted, and the Opening of the Door to Infidelity 6. Detonation of the Bomb: Infidelity Discovered, the Partner’s Perspective and the Decision to Pick up the Pieces or Pack it in 7. Exploring the Wishes, Dreams, and Fantasies Unfulfilled and/or Developing New Ones to Pursue Together 8. Rebalancing the See-Saw: Sharing Power and Working Together 9. Increasing Satisfaction and Learning to Ride the Ups and Downs of Relationships 10. Affair Proof! How to Help Couples Make Sure An Infidelity Isn’t Happening or Won’t Ever Happen Again 11. Conclusion and Wrap-Up
Paul R. Peluso, PhD, is Professor and Chair of the Department of Counselor Education at Florida Atlantic University and the Past President of the International Association of Marriage and Family Counseling (IAMFC). He is also the author/coauthor of six books—including Changing Aging, Changing Family Therapy: Practicing with 21st Century Realities—and the past editor of the journal Measurement and Evaluation in Counseling and Development.
"Kudos to Dr. Paul Peluso for providing such a readable and useful guide for those who want to escape the havoc and heartbreak of the netherworld of infidelity. Using a family systems perspective, he expertly identifies different problems and offers specific needed remedies. Professionals and patients will find much benefit. Highly recommended!"
Michael F. Hoyt, PhD, author/editor of Brief Therapy and Beyond, Therapist Stories of Inspiration, Passion, and Renewal: What’s Love to Do with It?, Capturing the Moment, The Handbook of Constructive Therapies, and Single-Session Therapy by Walk-In or Appointment
"Counselor extraordinaire Peluso plumbs the intrapsychic and systemic cores of infidelity. In so doing, he provides compelling frames and effective techniques to help therapists and their clients traverse the minefield of betrayal and pain to compassion and growth. A cogent and valuable contribution!"
John C. Norcross, PhD, ABPP, Distinguished Professor of Psychology, University of Scranton, editor of Psychotherapy Relationships That Work
"Finally, there is a book that has a scientific basis for treating infidelity. The system proposed in this book is also logical, sensible, and very practical as a guide for the practicing couples therapist. Delight in devouring its ideas! Paul Peluso has advanced our field immeasurably with this contribution. This book is a must for any couples therapist or couple dealing with infidelity."
John Gottman, PhD, author of The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work.
"Excellent educators engage learners to see old problems with new vision. In A family systems guide to infidelity, Paul Peluso proves his excellence. Peluso shifts our understanding of infidelity from a relational death sentence, into relational energy, potential, and meaning. If you work with couples, families, (or any humans), you should read this book; it will give you renewed hope. Your clients will reap the rewards."
John Sommers-Flanagan, Professor of Counselor Education at the University of Montana, author of Clinical Interviewing