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416 A Dialogue on Infidelity

Esther PerelTerry Real Esther Perel & Terry Real • Saturday Morning

Conventional wisdom maintains that sexual infidelity is always a symptom of a deeply troubled relationship, and that therapists should insist upon full disclosure, never keeping secrets, and viewing the infidelity as a highly traumatic event. However, when

it comes to affairs, there’s no one-size-fits-all. In this workshop, two therapists present their differing and provocative perspectives on the causes, meanings, and opportunities when working with infidelity. They’ll discuss different types of infidelity---from one-night stands to second families. We’ll show how couples can rebuild trust and intimacy after an affair, and will discuss whether all affairs are traumatic and if some affairs can actually help transform a marriage. We’ll consider how our personal assumptions, moral values, and experiences influence our professional perspectives. You’ll leave with a more nuanced and multicultural understanding of the complexity of infidelity and a new map of clinical responses.

Esther Perel, M.A., author of the international bestseller Mating in Captivity: Unlocking Erotic Intelligence, is the recipient of the 2009 book award from the Society for Sex Therapy and Research. To learn more, visit

Terry Real, L.I.C.S.W., Good Morning, America’s relationship expert, founded the Relational Life Institute. His books include The New Rules of Marriage: What You Need to Make Love Work and the bestseller I Don’t Want to Talk About It: Overcoming the Secret Legacy of Male Depression. To learn more, visit