First, I'm ADD without much medication, and this isn't the easiest read on infidelity, so if you disagree with anything I say about the book, please contribute.
Second, Ortman is a former Catholic priest, so he talks a lot in Christian terms, but he also brings in concepts from Buddhism and Native American thought & sprituality.
Cons: Ortman seems to say that the BS is likely to be co-dependant and to bear some responsibility for the A.
Also, on page 37 he states that women are good at handling feelings, while men just deal with problems.
None of these positions are well supported by what I see on SI or by what I experience myself: 1) BSes don't cause infidelity; 2) I haven't seen a lot of co-dependancy; 3) I have seen a significant number of men who handle their feelings as well as women do.
Pros: The trauma metaphor makes sense for infidelity, as far as I can tell. Ortman's model for recovery makes sense. His inclusion of Buddhist and Native American thought adds useful perspectives; by illustrating his points this way, the reader has a higher probability of getting something from the book. More important, in each section he offers exercises to help reduce the trauma, and I've found some of them useful.
Bottom line: If the classics (Not 'Just Friends', etc.) don't help you or don't help you enough, this might.
[This message edited by sisoon at 7:20 PM, March 26th (Saturday)]
While it has been awhile since I read it, what I thought was extremely useful was comparing the trauma of infidelity with other traumas i.e. wartime, rape, severe car accident. The emotional devastation is real and goes as deep as the other life traumas mentioned. It can take years to recover from infidelity
I read this book along with Not Just Friends, and I highly recommend both of them.
I do not and will not accept any co-dependancy or responsibility for my H's A: IT WAS ALL HIS.
My biggest problem with my PTSD was abandonment issues (Lots of childhood issues came first). I was abandoned by the one person (H) I finally opened myself up to and fully trusted-big mistake!
I now know I need to make "me" the person I lean on/turn to first.
It's a good book though. I recommend it.
Status: Struggling Everday to
what we leave behind us is a part of ourselves; we must die to one life before we can enter another-Anatole France
While I am a co-dependant to the tee, I bear no responsiblity for my W's A. That said, I feel that I am responsible for 50% of the factors of our marriage that led up to the A. We were both miserable to each other. While her A was the most selfish act one could ever do, our marriage was in bad shape. What she did was selfish...period. I wouldn't have ever done it. But I needed to at least acknowledge how I was pre-A.
The book helped me a lot with not only understanding the trauma of it all, but also with what it means to forgive and recover.
I agree with you about the whole feeling thing between genders. I'm a man who has been flooded with more feelings and emotions that I thought were even possible.
I thought his exercises were pretty good as well. Very consistent from chapter to chapter.
I wasn't bothered by the religious tone of the book even though I am not a very religious person.
Bottom line, it's a good book and an easy read. I read it in about two days.
It helps clarify my feelings, although my IC keeps referring to my reactions as "trauma" or "survival" response, I somehow always dismissed it. However, reading this book helps me understand I AM traumatized by infidelity.