Don't Call It Love
by Dr. Gregory L. Jantz
& Dr. Tim Clinton
with Ann McMurray
Paperback: 224 pages
Released: September 1, 2015
Source: ebook review copy from the publisher from NetGalley.
Book Description from NetGalley:
"You complete me" may be a romantic line in a popular movie, but it's not a healthy basis for a real relationship. Unfortunately, many people are drawn into relationships that are unfulfilling precisely because they are looking to other people to fill in the places where they are lacking--they are looking for a person who will "complete" them. At the heart of relationship dependency is a person's belief that he or she alone is not enough. But using others to provide wholeness simply does not work, because while we are made to be relationship dependent, it is God we must turn to in order to find wholeness.
In a warm, engaging style, Drs. Jantz and Clinton walk readers through patterns of relationship dependency, helping them unravel why they are drawn back to the same dry well of unfulfilled relationships over and over again. Readers will discover how to break the cycle, banish their fears, and find wholeness in the God who designed them to be in relationship first and foremost with him, thus freeing them to find healthy relationships with others. Includes a twelve-week personal recovery plan.
Don't Call It Love is a book that describes relationship dependency and how to break that cycle. I've had difficultly understanding why a teenager I mentor seems to seek out chaotic, emotional roller coaster relationships. This book did help me understand where she's coming from, but it's intended to be read by someone who needs help rather than someone who wants to help. The overall tone of the book was encouraging and hopeful.
The majority of the book was a series of questions, lists, and descriptions relating to relationship dependency. The authors described various traits of relationship dependency, the 8-phase addicted-to-relationships cycle, and the fears that drive this behavior. They explored how emotional and spiritual abuse contributes to relationship dependency. (Spiritual abuse is when someone deliberately uses God's approval--and this someone "speaks" for God--to control another person.) They also explained how brain chemistry can reinforce bad patterns of behavior, how this can be retrained, and various attachment styles.
Finally, they talked about the truths you need to know to replace the lies that feed relationship dependency. The authors are Christians, so these truths are based on Biblical truths. This included more questions and lists, but these showed how knowing the truth changes the answers that you might have previously given. They also included a 12 week recovery plan that gives a prayer, Bible verse, the truth learned from that verse, and actions to take that week.
The book gently helps the reader to recognize and admit unhealthy relationship patterns in their lives and encourages them to want something better. I think it'd help someone frustrated with their relationships.
If you've read this book, what do you think about it? I'd be honored if you wrote your own opinion of the book in the comments.
Excerpt: Read an excerpt using Google Preview.