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Receiving Love

In an intelligent and insightful volume, Hendrix and Hunt, cocreators of Imago Relationship Therapy and coauthors of Getting the Love You Want, share their solution to a common relationship problem: the difficulty of accepting love, expressed by, for example, criticizing a gift from one’s partner or spurning an intimate gesture. The authors, husband and wife, begin by talking painfully about how their own marriage nearly ended because Harville, despite obvious evidence to the contrary, didn’t feel loved by his wife. As the authors note, there are many ways “to defend yourself against someone else’s desire to encourage, help, or love you,” whether because you overvalue your partner and feel unworthy of his or her love, or because you devalue that partner and see him or her as unworthy of giving love.