The Heart's Progress: A Memoir

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Penguin Books, 1998 - Social Science - 227 pages
A unique glimpse into the growth of one woman's lesbian identity

Like many lesbians, Claudia Bepko was a young woman when she first admitted to having homosexual feelings -- but it took a lifeless heterosexual marriage and a fierce attraction to a female colleague before she was able to live openly in a relationship with another woman. In this moving memoir, she relives the painful and poignant awakenings she experienced in her early life: from her blue-collar Catholic upbringing and alcoholic father to her exhilaration and confusion as she entered college during the height of the sexual revolution where she encountered her first lovers -- Molly, a fellow student, and David, whom she would eventually marry.

"The different among us tell our stories because we are all only human and so much need a witness to the truth", writes Bepko. Having built a career in the early years of the women's movement, she found the courage to question her heterosexuality. Approaching middle age in the midst of "lesbian chic", she finds herself finally able to move from an identity shrouded in otherness to a life that celebrates the freedom and normalcy of loving whomever one is destined to love.

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User Review  - Kirkus

Though flawed, this is an emotionally honest and compelling memoir from the coauthor of Too Good for Her Own Good (1990). It chronicles the experience of a bleak family life in which both parents are ... Read full review

The heart's progress

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

Bepko, a feminist therapist and coauthor of several works, including Singing at the Top of Our Lungs (HarperCollins, 1993), here offers a memoir meant to shed light on contemporary lesbian life. Bepko ... Read full review


Family Values
Girl in Blue
Labor Pains

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About the author (1998)

Claudia Bepko and Jo-Ann Krestan are nationally recognized family therapists and experts in the areas of gender issues and addiction. Frequent lecturers and workshop leaders, they are coauthors of"The Responsibility Trap: A Blueprint for Treating the Alcoholic Family." They are codirectors of Family Therapy Associates in Brunswick, Maine.

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