This is a very practical book. Easy to read and has real suggestions. I’ve read this once before and the main thing that stuck with me was to change your expectations for people. That person simply cannot give you what you want. Accept that and move on. Lindsay Gibson directs the language of the book towards parents (obviously), but this time around reading it I couldn’t help but plug in men I’ve dealt with over the years too. I was like hmm that’s weird–wait lol. There’s the pattern of recreation. The same things that bothered me then are happening in my life now with other people. That was pretty great.

It’s also just generally validating to read that so many other people have gone through similar things. Gibson describes different types of immature parents who all manage to leave their child feeling lonely. Then that lonely person goes off to have a kid and then may unintentionally makes their kid feel lonely too because that’s their relationship pattern that they’re redoing because it’s familiar and comfortable to them. And kids don’t know any better. It’s adults who have to choose to do their own healing work for the greater good. You need to stop and observe. Know that it’s not up to other people to make you feel better. You can make things right with yourself.

Best line: “Relationships are sustained by the pleasure of emotional intimacy, the feeling that someone is interested in taking the time to really listen and understand your experience. If you don’t have that, your relationship won’t thrive. Mutual emotional responsiveness is the single most essential ingredient of human relationships.”

-Rachel Wagner 2020


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