How Psychotherapy Helps Us Understand Sexual Relationships : Insights from the Consulting Room book cover
1st Edition

How Psychotherapy Helps Us Understand Sexual Relationships
Insights from the Consulting Room

ISBN 9780367177812
Published September 10, 2019 by Routledge
214 Pages

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Book Description

In this fascinating book, Cherry Potter takes readers on her personal and professional quest for insights into sex, relationships and gender differences. Why do we feel what we feel, and do what we do? What is the impact of ‘performance anxiety’ on men, and on society generally? Why are women still faking it? Is ubiquitous online porn turning the clock backwards?

The book delves into the work of Freud, Klein, Bowlby and recent developments in attachment theory for insights into our conscious and unconscious fears and desires, and introduces readers to a range of fascinating clients. These include Jeremy, who was so ashamed of his virginity he was unable to have a relationship; Ellie, who repeatedly fell in love with unobtainable men; Kieran, whose fear of abandonment threatened to wreck his gay relationships; Dulcie, who for years had been unable to face the truth that her husband was having multiple affairs; and Lars, who was addicted to online porn and prostitutes. The book shows how the work between therapist and client is a process of learning together, which is at times painful and deeply moving, but can also reflect a renewed vitality and hope for the future, particularly when it comes to talking about sex.

How Psychotherapy Helps Us Understand Sexual Relationships: Insights from the Consulting Room will be of great interest to both the general reader as well as psychotherapists and counsellors.

Table of Contents

Preface;  1. It all begins in childhood;  2. Big changes, entrenched attitudes;  3. What have parents got to do with our sexual relationships?;  4. Love and attachment and why they matter;  5. On women, their fathers, and forbidden love;  6. Affectionate love and lasting sexual desire: Can we have both?;  7. On pornography, prostitutes and sex addiction;  8. On women’s misogyny and self-hatred;  9. On passion, envy, rage and hate;  AfterwordReferences

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Cherry Potter is a UKCP-registered psychotherapist, group analyst and couple therapist. She was formerly a writer and film school lecturer, and she has run screenwriting workshops in many countries. She has published three books and many articles about film, culture and relationships. She sees clients at her private practice in Brighton.


"What strikes me is Cherry Potter’s openness, how engaging her book is and how much I identify with it. I’ve no doubt this will be a great book for therapists as well as for people struggling to understand their own sexuality. But I suspect its real value will be for encouraging people to be as honest with themselves as Cherry Potter has been." Philippa Perry, Psychotherapist, Author, Presenter of Sex Lies and Lovebites: The Agony Aunt Story (BBC Four), The Great British Sex Survey (Channel 4) and others

"Her writing style is accessible and her knowledge of psycho-analytic theory obvious. I recommend it widely." Paula Hall, UKCP Accredited Sexual and Relationship Psychotherapist, Founder and Clinical Director of the Laurel Centre, Author, Sex Addiction: A Guide for Couples and Those Who Help Them