ELLE Australia
Lets Begin Image Credit: ELLE Australia
Lets Begin Image Credit: ELLE Australia

Let's Begin

WITH TWO TED TALKS, AS MANY BOOKS AND A WILDLY POPULAR PODCAST, ESTHER PEREL IS THE MOST INFLUENTIAL RELATIONSHIP THERAPIST OF OUR TIME. WE PICK THE BRAIN OF THE WOMAN WHO SEEMS TO BE ABLE TO READ YOURS

Elle Mcclure

IF YOU’RE LOOKING at Esther Perel to offer a quick fix for your relationship woes, you won’t get it. In a world where the answer to any question entering our minds (Which moment from childhood sparked my intimacy issues? Does crying to The National mean I should leave my partner?) is expected to be at our fingertips instantly, and we leave uncomfortable conversations on “read”, the beloved couples therapist offers no hard-and-fast rules, instead forcing us to hold up a mirror and do the work ourselves. As Perel will tell you, “I don’t have answers, as in, ‘This is what you do.’ I do say, ‘This is how I think it works.’”

Yet her pull is powerful. Between Perel’s 2013 TED Talk — on the all-too-familiar topic of waning desire in long-term relationships – and a diatribe on rethinking infidelity which came two years later, her talks have more than 27 million views. Her word, when it comes to our most intimate relationships, is considered gospel – a kind of sexual healing for a generation that’s dating faster but marrying later than ever before. Tapped by Fortune 500 companies to act as an organizational consultant and by Showtime to advise for TV series The Affair, the psychotherapist now has two books, a prolific online presence that includes twice-monthly newsletters and, of course, her podcast Where Should We Begin? Oh, and she still runs a clinical office in New York, which


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