Chapter 1: Our Defenses and How They Get in the Way of Love

Chapter 1 discusses how we get in our own way when we want to have love in our lives, and it goes on to explain how defenses create psychological barriers to love. 


Chapter 2: The Critical Inner Voice That Supports Our Defenses

Chapter 2 exposes a destructive internal process—the critical inner voice—that supports our defenses and acts to undermine our intimate relationships. 


Chapter 3:The Voice Therapy Method

Chapter 3 presents a method, based on Robert Firestone’s technique of Voice Therapy, for challenging the critical inner voice and overcoming the psychological defenses that interfere with love. 


Chapter 4: When Love Makes Us Feel Vulnerable

Chapter 4 describes how we defend ourselves when love makes us feel vulnerable, and it offers suggestions for sustaining vulnerability. 


Chapter 5: When Love Disrupts the Fantasy Bond

Chapter 5 discusses how love interferes with a core defense—the fantasy bond, a defense that involves forming an imaginary connection with another person, and that often replaces genuine love in a romantic relationship. It presents actions that you can take to challenge your fantasy bond and keep love alive in your relationship. 


Chapter 6: When Love Challenges Our Negative Identity

Chapter 6 explores how we are conflicted when our positive feelings from love contradict our negative identity from childhood. It also offers a path to your being able to reject your old identity and instead accept the new one. 


Chapter 7: When Love Triggers Guilt

Chapter 7 discusses how the happiness we feel from love can leave us feeling guilty in relation to someone significant to us who is lonely or unhappy. It describes how to address these various guilty reactions. 


Chapter 8: When Love Arouses Deep Sadness

Chapter 8 describes how we tend to defend ourselves when love and intimacy arouse sadness in us. It examines our fear of sadness and reveals the benefits of being open to feeling it. 


Chapter 9: When Love Stirs Up Our Fear of Loss

Chapter 9 explains how we push love away when love and emotional attachment evoke our fears of loss and our awareness of death. It also explains how facing these existential realities can, in fact, enrich your life and make your relationships more meaningful. 


Chapter 10: A Look Ahead

Chapter 10 concludes the book with advice that will help you pre- serve your individuality, develop your communication skills, deal with anger constructively, and engage in the act of loving. 

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