Desire: Where Sex Meets Addiction

Front Cover
Simon and Schuster, Oct 7, 2008 - Psychology - 192 pages
3 Reviews
We've all felt the giddy flutter of excitement when our new lover walks into the room. Waited by the phone, changed our plans...But are we in love, or is there something darker at work? In Desire: Where Sex Meets Addiction, Susan Cheever explores the shifting boundaries between the feelings of passion and addiction, desire and need, and she raises provocative and important questions about who we love and why.

Elegantly written and thoughtfully composed, Cheever's book combines unsparing and intimate memoir, interviews and stories, hard science and psychology to explore the difference between falling in love and falling prey to an addiction. Part one defines what addiction is and how it works -- the obsession, the betrayals, the broken promises to oneself and others. Part two explores the possible causes of addiction -- is it nature or nurture, a permanent condition or a temporary derangement? Part three considers what we can do about it, including a provocative suggestion about how we describe and treat addiction, and a look at the importance of community and storytelling.

In the end, there are no easy answers. "A straight look about some crooked feelings," Desire shows us the difference between the addiction that cripples our emotions, and healthy, empowering love that enhances our lives.
 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Texsain - LibraryThing

Susan Cheever gives a lot of good information about addiction in general while focusing specifically on sexual addiction, but nothing she says is earth shattering or unique. It can all be found in ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - bobbieharv - LibraryThing

I'd forgotten what an abysmal writer Susan Cheever is. I could barely finish this, what with my sighing and eye-rolling. Journalese, repetitions, brief allusions to the personal barricaded with ... Read full review

Contents

The Bride the Groom and the Dog
3
The Broken Promise
9
Bill Wilson
21
Abusers vs Addicts
35
The Brain
43
Trance and Obsession
51
Tolerance and Shame
63
Adultery
73
Is Sex Addiction the Male Version of Female Bulimia?
113
All of the Above
119
what can we do about
125
A Community of One
135
Storytelling
143
How Others Tell the Story
153
Conscience and Remorse
159
The Dog Again
165

Repetition
83
The Body
93
Old Age Is a New Thing
103

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About the author (2008)

Susan Cheever is the bestselling author of thirteen previous books, including five novels and the memoirs Note Found in a Bottle and Home Before Dark. Her work has been nominated for the National Book Critics Circle Award and won the Boston Globe Winship Medal. She is a Guggenheim Fellow, a member of the Corporation of Yaddo, and a member of the Author's Guild Council. She teaches in the Bennington College M.F.A. program. She lives in New York City with her family.

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