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Download The Husbands and Wives Club: A Year in the Life of a Couples Therapy Group Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample The Husbands and Wives Club: A Year in the Life of a Couples Therapy Group, by Laurie Abraham Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (141 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Laurie Abraham Narrator: Laural Merlington Publisher: Tantor Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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Starting in spring 2006, journalist Laurie Abraham sat in with five troubled couples as they underwent the searing process of group marriage therapy. Published as “Can This Marriage Be Saved?” the resulting article generated intense reader response. While space limitations allowed Abraham to focus only on one couple in her article, this book, which grew out of it and the reaction it inspired, tells the moving, fascinating story of all five.

Writing with the narrative dexterity of a great novelist, Abraham recounts the travails, triumphs, and reversals that beset the five couples as they work with their therapist—and each other—to find out whether they can attain the satisfaction in marriage they originally sought. At times wrenching and at times inspiring, the sessions bring out the long-hidden resentments, misunderstandings, unmet desires, and unspoken needs that bedevil many an imperiled couple. At the same time, these encounters provide road maps to reconciliation and revival that can be used by anyone in a relationship. Along the way, the author draws on her explorations of philosophy, literature, Freudian theory, and modern science to decode the patterns and habits that suggest whether a troubled marriage will survive or die. The fact that the five couples are ultimately successful makes this not only an important look at the state of marital dysfunction in America today but a reaffirmation of the enduring bonds of love.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Abraham skillfully weaves increasingly fascinating sessions of a couples therapy group with meticulous research about love, marriage, therapy, and humanity.”

    Cathi Hanauer, New York Times bestselling author of Sweet Ruin

  • "The Husbands and Wives Club is that rare work of nonfiction that reads like a really good novel—it’s rich in character, drama, and emotional suspense.”

    Tom Perrotta, New York Times bestselling author of Little Children

  • “Merlington portrays scenes of long-hidden childhood hurts and marital resentments, awkward attempts to right power struggles, and angry needs for intimacy. Intense and brutally honest revelations about sex, love, and money are sometimes uncomfortable and upsetting, sometimes inspiring and uplifting, always illuminating.”


  • “This is one of the smartest and most candid books on marriage I know.”

    Phyllis Rose, author of Parallel Lives

Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Shifra | 2/2/2014

    " This book in non fiction and the author follows five couples struggling with the normal challenges including money sex and power that couples face in a marriage. I found listening to their experiences helpful and inspiring. There are no easy answers to keep marriages evolving. It made me think about think more deeply about my own interactions. I do recommend this book. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Dawn | 1/12/2014

    " For me, this book was too much about the history of different couples therapy theories and not enough about the couples actually in the group. An attempt was made at character development, but, really more from a reporting eye than a plot device to make the story richer, deeper. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Leila Cohan-Miccio | 12/17/2013

    " Oh man. This look inside a couples therapy group was so fascinating, I wished Abraham hadn't spent any time on theories about marriage. All I wanted was to know more about these people! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Ayelet Waldman | 12/14/2013

    " Other people's bad marriages are like car accidents. You can't help but stare but it makes you feel bad. "

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About the Author

Laurie Abraham is a freelance writer, senior editor of Elle magazine, and the author of Mama Might Be Better Off Dead: The Failure of Health Care in Urban America. Formerly the executive editor of Elle, she has written for New York magazine, the New York Times, Mother Jones, and many other publications. Her work is also included in Best American Essays 2006, as well as the original collections The Bitch in the House, Maybe Baby, and The Secret Currency of Love. Abraham has bachelor’s and master’s degrees in journalism from Northwestern University and a master’s in law from Yale University.