By David B. Wexler, Ph.D.
When the emotional demands of your relationship become too much to deal with, how do you respond? The premise of this bestseller is that good, well-intentioned men can, in times of stress and emotional conflict, act in destructive ways that don’t reflect their true character.
Learn to recognize and label your internal states. Find out why displays of “not-so-masculine” emotions are so difficult to deal with, and why they can provoke episodes of problematic behavior.
Readers will learn about, and begin to understand, the “broken mirror” phenomenon – the particular power that men ascribe to females. Specific outbreaks, such as verbally abusive acts toward intimate partners, of men “acting badly,” are reviewed in depth, along with research about the male brain and male neuropsychological functioning which is often maladaptive for the demands of modern relationships.
The latest research is provided about important mid-life issues that affect men and often lead them into emotional disarray and “acting badly.” The book also covers the complex issue of the father-son relationship (and the corollary issue of the male peer culture influence) and the often damaging template that is created for the next generation.
Perhaps most significantly, the book gives examples of male success stories. Using the story of Odysseus and his forewarnings about the island of the Sirens in his journey back to Ithaca, readers will hear stories about the “relational heroism” of which men are capable, learn to appreciate the “soft underbellies” of even the most defended men.
Last but not least, readers will learn how to speak “guy talk” in approaching men who are more typically defensive and emotionally out of touch.
Every step of the way, a series of exercises and strategies help transfer the concepts from this book into everyday life and to help men generate new alternative responses when faced with previously unbearable emotions.