This review is from: Love In Abundance: A Counselor’s Advice On Open Relationships [Paperback]  (Author) Kathy Labriola (Paperback)
Kathy Labriola’s book, “Love In Abundance: A Counselor’s Advice on Open Relationships” is a great contribution to the literature on polyamorous and/or open relationships. She gives excellent advice garnered from her extensive counseling experience, and backs up her recommendations with clear, helpful examples. Her topics are helpful and interesting, running the gamut from communication advice to suggestions for how to deal with jealousy, and much more. One especially unusual and helpful aspect to the book, in my opinion, is Labriola’s commitment to sexual orientation inclusiveness. In her relationship examples, she seamlessly includes same-sex relationships as well as heterosexual ones. She discusses several kinds of relationship formations as well, and not just the “usual” heterosexual, primary-secondary/hierarchical model.
On the not-so-perfect side, some people have found her section on advice about communication between men and women to be a bit “gender-essentialist,” and others find her advice in general to be somewhat “basic.” I myself think she has observed some true patterns over the years regarding communication between men and women, and has some good communication advice that isn’t limited to relationships between the gender binary, nor to any particular style of relating. I also find her advice to be grounded in reality, and a gentler introduction to the concepts than some of the books that came before.
I highly recommend this book to my clients and other people interested in polyamorous/open relationships. I think it fits in nicely, filling the gaps between the groundbreaking Polyamory: The New Love Without Limits : Secrets of Sustainable Intimate Relationships by Deborah Anapol, and the book touted for years as the “poly bible,” The Ethical Slut: A Practical Guide to Polyamory, Open Relationships & Other Adventures by Dossie Easton and Janet Hardy. Not as radical as Redefining Our Relationships: Guidelines For Responsible Open Relationships by Wendy-O Matik and far less dense than Ravencroft’s Polyamory: Roadmaps for the Clueless & Hopeful, I think this book is a solid guide in an often confusing territory, especially helpful to those completely new to the concepts.
Highly recommended for relationship explorers of any sort, and a must-have for any counseling professional who serves these communities.
By the way, did you know Kathy is releasing a new book in September? It’s the Jealousy Workbook, and it looks like another fabulous resource. I have a small part in it too, with one of my Tools for “Riding the Green Wave” published in the section called “Ask the Experts.” Hooray! The new book isn’t available yet, but you can pre-order it directly from Kathy.
Also, Kathy and I are hosting a Teleseminar called Jealousy First Aid, on September 4th, at 5:45pm Pacific Time. I’ll be doing a more formal announcement of that soon, but in the meantime, I’ve just finished the web-form to sign up, so if you’d like to get started, feel free to fill out this form, and get on the list! (And please do let me know if the form doesn’t work right or something; this is the first time I’ve used this program to do this, so I’m a little nervous about it working!)
Here’s hoping all your relationships are going along swimmingly this summer!