Monday, January 18, 2010

This is Your Brain in Love

This Is Your Brain in Love may be the most interesting book I have read so far this year.  While it is certainly a book that has been the most challenging because of the numerous references to brain anatomy, it has also been very rewarding.  This is Your Brain in Love begins with Dr. Earl Henslin's desire to strengthen marriages. Through his research of Dr. Daniel Amen's work in SPECT scans, Dr. Henslin submits that understanding how your brain works when you are in love can you be a better spouse.  Instead of looking at the 5 Love Languages, we are now looking at the 5 love styles and how different parts of the brain react, depending on your styles.

The book also features a special appendix for men who have struggled with sexual addiction and another for women, focused on hormone changes that occur throughout their life.  These two sections are worth the price of the book in my opinion (and in fact could easily be expanded into books in their own right).

I have to say that I really enjoyed this book, because as a former therapist who is going through the process of renewing his license, I enjoy this type of work. I have read numerous works about how drug use effects the brain (helpful since I currently work at a Christian drug treatment center). It was quite interesting to see the similar ways in which love effects the brain.  In fact in the opening chapter there is a SPECT scan on a brain.  According to the author, it would be nearly impossible for a doctor to tell you if the scan was a picture of someone in the initial romantic phase of a relationship or if they had been using cocaine.  That's the power of love. It's no wonder that so many people who have been wounded by love, turn to drugs as a way to escape.

While I highly enjoyed this book, I realize that it is not the typical reading material for everyone, even in the specific genre of "Love and Marriage." It is not necessarily easy reading.  However, there are some very practical applications given, and easy tests that can be taken to help you better understand you or your spouse's love type.  I would highly recommend reading this book if you desire to learn more about how a brains work, especially in relation to love.

This book was provided for review by Thomas Nelson.

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