The Relationship Cure: A 5 Step Guide to Strengthening Your Marriage, Family, and Friendships

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A groundbreaking, practical program for transforming troubled relationships into positive ones

“This is the best book on relationships I have ever read. . . . John Gottman has decoded the subtle secrets that can either enrich or destroy the quality of our ties with others.” Daniel B. Wile, Ph.D., author of After the Fight: Using Your Disagreements to Build a Stronger Relationship

“John Gottman is our leading explorer of the inner world of relationships. In The Relationship Cure, he has found gold once again.”William J. Doherty, Ph.D., author of Take Back Your Marriage: Sticking Together in a World That Pulls Us Apart

“When he says his five steps will help you build better connections with the people you care about, you know that they have been demonstrated to work.” E. Mavis Heatherington, Ph.D., professor of psychology, University of Virginia

From the country’s foremost relationship expert and New York Times bestselling author Dr. John M. Gottman comes a powerful, simple five-step program, based on twenty years of innovative research, for greatly improving all of the relationships in your life—with spouses and lovers, children, siblings, and even your colleagues at work. In The Relationship Cure, Dr. Gottman:

* Reveals the key elements of healthy relationships, emphasizing the importance of what he calls “emotional connection”
* Introduces the powerful new concept of the emotional “bid,” the fundamental unit of emotional connection
* Provides remarkably empowering tools for improving the way you bid for emotional connection and how you respond to others’ bids

Customer Reviews:

  • best communication book I've ever read
    I work in Family Practice and Urgent Care as a physician assistant and do most of the 'psych' in our clinic. My background is in counseling psychology as well. I consider this book the most thorough, useful and appropriate 'communications skills' self-help book I have ever read. I recommend it to my patients and friends constantly. Janee Gillette, PA-C...more info
  • I love it so far!
    Im not a big reader, but when I realized my marriage needed help I was willing to read every book I could get my hands on if it would help. Im just in the third chapter of this one but I can already see a difference in my communication with others and I cant wait to keep reading! What I really like about this book is the way it's written. It seems as though Mr Gottman writes as if he were speaking in converstation and adds a bit of humor as well. I am really enjoying this book! 4 stars just because im not done with it yet, but I think it will be a 5!...more info
  • The Relationship Cure : A 5 Step Guide to Strengthening Your Marriage, Family, and Friendships
    Practical is the main wqord....more info
  • Simple and Insightful
    This book is so simple yet, so true. I like the fact that the content came out of real observations of people. The steps are clearly grounded in reality... not just theory about the way people behave.

    The "bid" concept has made me much more aware about the way I interact with others. I'm more careful about the way I respond to other's bids. I plan on implementing all of the strategies I have learned from Gottman....more info
  • Excellent advice on relationships!
    John Gottman, one of the leading authorities on relationships has produced another fantastic book on this subject. In this book he explains the basic elements of "people skills". It gives us concrete ideas about what it takes and how we can develop them. He uses information from many of his own research projects to explain the concepts and processes involved to understand the ways we interact with each other. I must admit that although my relationships were not the best until recently, this book has helped me improve these relationships quite dramatically. If you'd like to read an even more comprehensive explanation on how relationships work, read "The Ever-Transcending Spirit" by Toru Sato. It is also an outstanding book on relationships as well as adult (and childhood) development. Two thumbs up for both books!!!...more info
  • Got tired of the male bashing.
    The author might try to appeal to men a little more.

    Any family therapist knows that rule #1 is "Do not take sides." Your job is not to find out who's got the problem, or who is to blame. Your job is to recognize the "problem patterns" into which the family system falls again and again.

    The concept of the emotional bid is very simple and effective, but that doesn't get a book 5 stars. The rest of the book was Gottman's speculations and "command system" formulas. Reminds me of all the other authors who have done the same thing, cataloging people according to their primary motives...Napoleon Hill, Anthony Robbins, Carl Jung, Myers and Briggs, David DeAngelo, etc. Obviously the emotional command systems notion wasn't "discovered" in his Love Lab. He invented that lens and now lazily sees all human relations through it.

    I found it telling that in the dozens of examples, every one of them portrayed the man as the one at fault and the woman as the innocent damsel trying her best. A man simply snaps at his wife. That's it. Tell the same story about a woman and the reader gets a full page of backstory justifying her inconsideration. And the irony is, Gottman's research showed that husbands in happy marriages "turned toward" their wives more often than husbands in unhappy marriages. But not wives. Whether their marriages were happy or unhappy, they "turned toward" their husbands the same amount.

    Of course, that means that marriages will benefit most if MEN read and apply this chapter, but not women.

    The problem with the entire book is, his research may be sound, but his conclusions are flawed. Gottman committed the unforgivable (as it is called in the statistical coven). He assigned a CAUSAL LINK where there was none.

    OF COURSE their are more emotional bids in happy marriages. Gottman claims that the emotional bids lead to (cause) happy marriages. The problem is, it is just as likely that happy marriages lead to more emotional bids (but not the other way around).

    Be on the lookout for titles of his next book: How Weight Gain Causes Overeating: the surprising truth behind overeating; More Firefighters Fighting the Fire Leads to More Fire Damage; Ice Cream Causes Drowning and Crime (ice cream sales rise with drowning deaths and crime because more ice cream is sold in the summer months).

    Therefore, emotional bidding causes nothing. It is the natural fruit of a happy marriage. Something ELSE caused the marriage to be happy (I'm sure you can think of dozens of plausible causes).

    ...more info
  • Excellent Book
    I think this book has some very good insights for a variety of situations. I bought it more for some personal issues, but it has some lessons that seem just as effective in the workplace....more info
  • Life-changing strategies!
    This book has altered the course of my life. I whole-heartedly recommend it to anyone who would like to improve their relationships with their spouse, parents, siblings, children, bosses, coworkers, friends, or ANYONE. It teaches fundamentals about the human nature of communication, offering real-life examples to aid in understanding. Based on years of research, I think these guys are onto something amazing, and it has truly changed my life.

    When one of my best friends confided to me that her husband had moved out and they were on the verge of divorce, I said, "Read this book together with him. It changed my life. Maybe it can help you, too." A few months later, she told me through tears that going through the process of reading this book together had changed their life too, and that now they were closer than ever. I ended up buying another copy to keep for myself.

    For the preview- it breaks communication down to simple "bids" for connection, the way you could respond to them, and the outcomes of various types of responses. Apparently, we are a lot more predictable than we realize, and I have found the information to be tried and true in my life since I first read the hardcover edition when it first came out, happening upon it by accident in the bookstore. ...more info
  • Excellent book
    John Gottman's books always have some good advice, and this one is no exception. I find his research very interesting and useful. See also Michele Weiner-Davis's The Divorce Remedy: The Proven 7-Step Program for Saving Your Marriage...more info
  • Great book with lots of practical exercises
    This book contains a lot of practical information about all types of relationships. It will help you to become more aware of how you function in relationships and why. Then, even more importantly, it gives you sound information on how to take this new awareness and use it to improve your significant relationships. This is one of the better relationship books I've ever read and I read a lot on relationships....more info
  • good insight about interactions
    only book I've read about relationships, but it seems like the guy has it down....more info
  • Not just help for couples!
    I expected a book full of advice for a better partnership and got a book that makes you aware of how you interact with everyone in your life. Not to say that it isn't great relationship advice, but it is so much more than that. If you truly take to heart what you learn from this book, you will come away a better person. I loved it!...more info
  • The Relationship Cure
    A great book and great ideas. From the Authors of Creating Your Own Way to Happiness. ...more info
  • Great
    This is an outstanding book, especially the section on emotional styles within families (dismissive, coaching, etc.). If we learned this in school like we learn the alphabet, we'd be much farther along emotionally and relationally as a society. Read this book and absorb it; very useful....more info
  • excellent, very insightful!
    Read this book and share it with your partner if you can. It is so spot-on about communication, I really wish everyone would read it! The basic premise is explaining how we relate to each other and what happens when we don't respond in a way that potentiates that relationship. It's easy to understand, a great read. I especially recommend it if you are in a relationship that is not going well and BOTH of you are looking for help in fixing it. Read it together. It will help you understand each other. (I only wish it wasn't called The Relationship Cure because it's really about Communication!)...more info