Esther Perel – Sex & Infidelity

Bored in your relationships? Lost the real ‘spark’ and settling for less? Marriage or long-term relationships can very quickly decay into become suffocating and emotionally draining, far from the liberating and erotic dizziness that first drove your courtship. You’re not dominated by routine, sex is stale. The adventure is gone, the passion is dead and the eroticism has evapourated.

It’s part culture and part our fault. Our consumer attitude has seemingly perforated even our approach to one another. We take what we need and head on our way – and it’s killing not only our relationships but our ability to be happy. We have a contentment crisis on our hands.

It’s at this precise point that most affairs happen, as an attempt to reawaken desire. The thrill of the chase, the connection and the mystery of someone you don’t know. “Desire is fuelled by the unknown” says this week’s London Real guest Esther Perel. That’s why when people cheat they feel not only free, but alive.

It’s precisely here that Esther is a world expert. It doesn’t have to be this way. Eroticism, mystery and romance are possible in long term relationships. How? Well, she’ll go into that on the show.

Connect with your vitality and creativity and revitalise your relationships this Sunday.

00:00 Trailer
03:50 Brian’s introduction
06:58 Background influences which contributed to Esther becoming a cross cultural psychologist.
09:53 A chance encounter on Liberation Day following a very dark time.
10:47 Learning from a young age of the brutality in the world, but also the possibilities for a positive life.
12:35 Circumstances can knock one person down, whilst for another, it is the catalyst to build them up.
14:57 How those who take risks manage to insulate feelings of danger so it doesn’t control them.
16:03 Why Esther is willing to question rigid certainties or authoritarianism with no room for ‘disruption’.
18:16 The quality of your life is determined by the quality of your relationships.
19:46 The changing reasons for working in men’s lives.
26:53 Esther’s bold statement that women’s lives are not going to change until men’s lives change.
28:43 Men are constantly having to prove they are men. Where male bonding is normative.
31:15 How the male millennial generation is seeking ways to change the need to prove masculinity.
34:09 Technology has its place but nothing surpasses face to face contact.
35:10 Love and desire relate but maybe they also conflict.
39:00 Retaining desire in a long term relationship.
40:19 Desire needs space: when couples desire their partner most.
43:12 How couples can engineer their own happiness and moments which generate desire.
45:34 We are asking one person to give us what once an entire village used to provide.
48:51 It is tragic that the average American today, in times of crisis, has only one and a half people to turn to.
49:29 Esther’s response to people who say ‘My wife is my best friend’.
51:17 What Esther wanted to facilitate with her book and first Ted talk, that was male friendly.
52:38 Why was it important for her to want it to be male-friendly?
54:53 Men don’t have a space nor language to express things about the male experience.
55:13 Brian answers Esther’s query as to how he responds to what she says in her Ted talk.
56:04 If you want comfy and safe, fine, but if you want spark, you need to get off the cosy sofa.and innovate.
59:50 Why did Esther give a second Ted talk so soon after the very successful first talk?
1:02:51 How Esther approached a talk on Infidelity.
1:07:50 Audience reaction.
1:08:33 The counter intuitive perceptions of infidelity she spoke of. The power of transgression.
1:15:14 Showing the audience alternative perspectives from the polarisation of views on infidelity.
1:16:51 What do we learn about love, lust and commitment by studying infidelity?
1:18:49 Some of the myths on male and female sexuality we don’t talk about or understand.
1:22:01 Facilitating talk amongst children about sex by making it a non-issue.
1:24:13 Adopting Dutch model of sex education would stop children learning through pornographic sex which is not normal.
1:26:15 Success secrets.
1:27:13 On her own death bed how will Esther evaluate her life?
1:28:21 Esther loves connecting people and growing the network of social connections.
1:29:04 Why Esther will continue to see patients as well as lecture and write books.
1:32:05 Your old relationship is over, would you like to start another, together or with someone else?
1:35:49 Phone call to the twenty year old Esther.
1:39:53 Best advice ever received.
1:41:40 Advice to the 20 year old who wants to get their own message across.
1:47:34 Brian’s summing up.
1:48:49 Esther asks Brian what one thing he took for talking with her.
1:49:59 Tell your partner ‘Thank you’.
1:52:04 Brian’s thanks.

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sirndpt
Member

“You’re not dominated by routine, sex is stale. The adventure is gone, the passion is dead and the eroticism has evaporated.”

I think you mean “You are dominated by routine”?

Ralf Five Point Boxing
Member
Ralf Five Point Boxing

Awesome production. So many good tidbits in there.

bojintaylor143
Member
bojintaylor143

Hi Brian, Your show should come with a mop and broom. My mind is just blown after listening to this. The conversation is so deep, I’ve had to stop, think, replay and still gasp at the perspective she presents.
Thank you so much for sharing. Once I get this mess cleaned up I will watch another.
be well
Bojin

Sylvia
Member

Thank I want to thank Londonreal for sharing this kind of valuable knowledge. Esther is a good example for many who bring out her important message to let love in the relationship stand out. warm regards, Sylvia by profession coach

alexisga21127
Member
alexisga21127

She is a goddess!

Tiffany
Member

The advice she gives to her younger self, and to younger women, is exactly the set of affirmations and wisdoms I just realized I needed. I’m so grateful for her contribution to discussions around sexuality and to modern relationships.

OTRO
Member

Amazing interview I learnt alot. Is there a way to email Esther?

Maria
Admin
Maria

Hi, you can reach out to Esther through her Twitter, Facebook or Instagram accounts.
Links are on the Show Notes tab. ?

Pixels
Member

Short sighted! Social issues require social participatory solutions. Individual choices as solutions to social issues could be merely based on individualism and self serving. There are cascading consequences to even the most insignificant social behaviour. Lets examine a parallel human behaviour. We, especially male human get angry in much less frequency in peaceful environments. But we do get angry. Can you imagine if we get the green light to go ahead and act under duress. There will be even more road rage killings and spouse flying the balconies and chairs thrown at the windows and pencils inserted at the eyes… Read more »

wolfman
Member
wolfman

Excellent interview. I have many years of experience as both client and psychotherapist. This women is courageous and
a breath of fresh air in a world full of hucksters selling psychological snake oil. She has the ability to cut through the official discourses and theoretical blinders of much psychological theory and culture. Brian, congratulations on your interviewing skills and thanks for making available this excellent interview.

Andrew Highland
Member

Mixed thoughts about this interview – on the one hand I am supportive of applying skepticism to rigidity in gender roles. On the other hand, if we stray too far from gender roles, I think that everyone will feel less connected their their animal nature, which will cause more dysfunction and less satisfaction. For example, we see women attending college more than men now. So what will the effect be on the forthcoming families? Either the women will work towards a great career, and throw it away by spending the optimal first 4 years with the child, or they will… Read more »

lkkp
Member
lkkp

I don’t think she very deeply thought about topics she talks about. Its mostly preconceptions, she’s responding to. She can’t even recognise value of so called traditional values, which of course should be understood for what they are targeting and shouldn’t be overdone on superficial level. If I’m struggle to refine myself this doesn’t mean the rules are bad.

lkkp
Member
lkkp

I don’t think she very deeply thought about topics she talks about. Its mostly preconceptions, she’s responding to. She can’t even recognise value of so called traditional values, which of course should be understood for what they good for and not overdone on superficial level.

lkkp
Member
lkkp

I don’t think she very deeply thought about topics she talks about. Its mostly preconceptions, she’s responding to.

Gaynor London
Member

This interview is pure gold. I knew of Esther from her phenomenal TED talks. Brian, I love how you take us deeper.

Esther’s history with her post-Holocaust family blew my mind. Grateful to hear that. I respect the bejeezus out of people who’ve faced that kind of hell and come out the other side to thrive.

Esther’s thoughts on relationships are not for the faint hearted. I’m going to ask her to write my online dating profile :))))

Nissa Williams
Member

I admire her insight. Thanks LondonReal for hosting this talk!

Coco Jones
Member

I was longing for a speaker like this- completely adore her!! Huge gratitude from a little island on the west coast of Canada !!!

Jenny Olivo
Member

Amazing talk! Hello from Baja California, Mexico.

Frank107
Member
Frank107

“we’re all born XX and then turn XY” – “Desire needs space”
Thank you for facilitating a great woman.

Rob Nowlin
Member

Brian, thank you for introducing me to Esther Perel; she has a wealth of knowledge. She is someone that has the ability and drive to make a positive impact on the people she comes into contact with.

Cathy Spence
Member

Great interview. It was wonderful to hear the complexities of long term relationships articulated in a way that respects and affirms both sexes.

Pascalus Magnus
Member

Thank you for this.

Mariela Madzharova
Member

Great interview! Thank you, Brian, for bringing these amazing people to us!

Annabella Ranalletta
Member

She is the best!!!!! fresh! new! amazing! with such a good information!!! loved it!!!!!
Ella es la mejor!!! fresca! nueva! increíble!!! con información muy muy buena! amé esta platica. Felicidades y que la inspiración divina te siga llegando de esa forma. El entrevistador espectacular!!!!!

Joanne Matz
Member

Esther Perel is a humanitarian. This generous interview allowed her to speak not just about sex but about how we can make a better world. I inspired!!!— Thank you so much!

TheFirm Sandton
Member

I absolutely Love Esther …. Great interview! Thank you .Thank you .

Rox
Member

I saw Esther Perel do her second TED talk first, and just from that 20 minute presentation, was completely hypnotized by her incredibly astute observations. The subject matter is very present in my life and so I was especially drawn to what she had to say. Now, after seeing other videos of her on YouTube, and especially this AMAZING interview, I know that I MUST meet her one day and speak to her face to face!! I just love how articulate she is and how she drives home so many relevant and oft-ignored points that affect us all – to… Read more »

Dominic Jones
Member

Very interesting. Thank you 🙂

dj
Member

Such a waste of time for me watching this…, she seems to be a nice person, but wrong on so many levels I can’t even start. I didn’t learn anything from her. If you want the real, harsh true, follow Roosh V, or the red pill movement (see Rollo Tomassi work) your mind will explode. And Brian, I really like you and think you are good in what your doing, but must say you look like a fool explaining what her TED talk meant to you (I think bit more masculine real man enerygy will do). BTW, so now TED… Read more »

Simone Bosi
Member

For everyone else who’s still not into objectifying people out of insecurity: no, do not follow Roosh V, he’s a creep.
Esther Perel is a gift from the heavens.

dj
Member

Sometimes truth hurts, you have no idea how much I’d like him (Roosh, or Mr. Tomassi) to be wrong, but, its not the case, once you deep dive into his work, cross reference your own experience there is no going back to ‘now knowing’, you’ve seen what is on the other side and what crap we are fed from the childhood. This is going out of your comfort zone, big time my friend. I think Esther Perel is just yet another woman who believes into what she saying, but this is basically not true. Shes preaching that the earth is… Read more »

dj
Member

Yeah, bring more hate ! I think my comment has the lowest rating ever (lets clarify something, I might be a bit troll, but I love London Real, and respect Brian). But seriously, you people use your brain. You all seem to be different than the rest mainstream, sophisticated human beings, but cannot stand the other opinion. Everything has to be be great and perfect, which is obviously not. Brian, please, invite Roosh V to the studio. You want to be challenged and go out of your comfort zone, bring it on baby ! lets hear what he has to… Read more »

Tracey Cambridge
Member

Esther is highly intelligent, articulate, talks faster than the average person, and uses a very extensive vocabulary. You have to know the definition of the words she uses to completely understand and follow what she is saying, and she is a skillful speaker able to put several complex ideas into one sentence. It is possible that the people who do not like Esther or what she says, do not like her simply because they do not understand some of the big words she uses. It is not her accent, or her ideas, or her beliefs, it is simply the vocabulary.

Petra Jordan
Member

Wonderful interview, just the video and audio was cutting out at the end. I’ve seen it happen at London Real, mostly with Vimeo format…

Ryupi
Member

speechless lol

Julian Marc Walker
Member

in the history of….. our show 🙂

Mandy McKeon
Member

Wonderful! Thanks

Michelle Donkersloot
Member

From all the interviews this is the most purest in my opinion.
Even you Brian! you were so humble and real I saw YOU..

Esther is great and she is really expressing what I think of this topic..

Kosan Stanojević
Member
Kosan Stanojević

This was so useful. Thank you.

Niccolo Baltasar
Member

volume is too low on her end

Laura Santillán
Member

Ester Perel is wise: she can explain easily difficult concepts and best of all, she gives us an opportunity to see things from a new perspective (without guilt)…
THANKS LONDON REAL for sharing this quite helpful material.
Greetings from Mexico City!

Deliana Deltcheva
Member

Wow, what an amazing woman, great interview. I thank you for all the great information Esther!

Tez
Member

Wow! What a intelligent and complex soul! Great interview! I learned a lot!

Vitomir Horvat
Member

Video streaming really sucks.

Elisabeth
Member

This is a ridiculously intelligent human being.

Leslie Lou M Hemsley
Member

Complex, eloquent and artful… what a beautiful flexible mind you have, Esther. This multi-perspective talk has been educational and more importantly–profoundly liberating and reassuring. We can all be different in terms of desire and love, but we’re all actually one and the same in the need to be appreciated and valued–regardless of age, race and preference for gender. My personal take away from this is that desire, eroticism, affection and or love are the alternative routes to support one’s meaningful existence and therefore will boost an individual to most likely connect with (positive) people –until this dynamic becomes a natural… Read more »

Joy
Member

I surmised that from Ms Perel’s explanation about the extreme dualities in the discussion of infidelity is basically due to our archaic ingrained religious perceptions/constraints that has limited our current discussion/views of infidelity

Joy
Member

I wonder what Ms Perel’s opinion is on the limited range of ‘accepted” male wardrobe in business and its affect on male suppression of emotions?

Joy
Member

I noticed something that may be a gender construct that may have been difficult for Mr Rose to fully understand (or keep up with ) Ms Perel’s summations after an explanation of a certain topic: When Ms Perel said ” ___ needs to be cultivated..” I think it took a moment for Mr Rose or maybe he kept quiet about his questioning to continue the interview … but maybe something as simple as cultivation and the agrarian connotation may harken back to gender constructs where a woman would stay home and tend to the house and garden, whilst a man… Read more »

Renata Koba
Member

Thank you for this interview. For me, it will be unforgettable.

Sukie
Member

I have always admire Esther Perel for her disruptive and authentic thinking, her diversity, her confidence and eloquence. What gave an an extra surprise is the the quality of the host. Brian has apparently done good preparation. He’s reflective and inviting approach triggered out a more complex and sparkling Ester Perel than in her many other interviews. I see two enchanting minds in this interaction. And I am very thankful to the both of them. Bravo!

Elias Andrinopoulos
Member

She was fantastic! Great interview!

Dominic Bauer
Member

Such a dope episode! Really enjoyed the subject material. Keep it up :D! WOOP WOOP

Tony "Jack the Bear" Mantz
Guest
Tony "Jack the Bear" Mantz

amazing podcast……..

Dyna Francia
Member

She must be dehydrated after the interview 🙁

Marek Tomaszewski
Member

What an amazing insight!: ) Its hard to believe she is 57 as well!

Lenka Gejdosova Sulik
Member

My favourite episode so far. More like these topics Brian please.It was excellent! I also like your new studio a lot, well done.

Charles Dahl
Member

I had never heard of her, but after the interview I simply adore her. She makes so much sense and has enormous courage to boot. Thank you, Brian, for a)meeting her and b) having the entrepreneurial wisdom to give her a wider audience.

Chathura Basnayake
Member

I felt so much gratitude and love for the compassionate drive she had to create this space for men. It’s good to see women inspiring men towards their own journey of self discovery.

Gabriel González
Member
phil-nower
Member

I thought it was a great conversation to listen to, very thought provoking and I did get a lot out of it. However… “yes, there it comes” there were some topics that unfortunately validated my not so high opinion of therapy in general.

Decebal Dobrica
Member

It’s so inspiring to hear someone that got through so much adversity, lives the good life and makes time for giving advice

Sam Bourgi
Member

I had to dig through my junk mail to find this email update. Apparently my email system filtered out Brian’s suggestive email title, “secrets of a sex therapist.” :’) I found that funny.

Glad I caught the update. Very interesting episode!

Louise Carrier
Member

What an inspiring lady! The way she spoke about survivors reduced me to tears. This was an incredible episode thank you @londonrealtv. . I’ve been struggling with my move; determining whether it was fear or a valid reason. Hearing Esther speak gave me confidence in my own feelings that what my Nan used to say was true; that absence makes the heart grow fonder and I’m right that this is an area to take care with. I now feel I can discuss this openly and I am looking at ways to keep a level of admiration and respect present in… Read more »

Marie-Judith Jean-Louis
Member

What an awesome person. I really needed to hear what she had to say and definitely got a new perspective on certain aspect of relationships. Thank you 😀

Cem Yildiz
Member

This is up there with one of my favourite episodes, more women please! 😀

Carlos Vera aka Kyle C.
Guest
Carlos Vera aka Kyle C.

Awesome guest 🙂

David Murphy
Member

What an amazing person, so many things to think about and work on. Thank you!

Ducis Viard
Member

This was very insightful. It allowed me to not just re-examine my romantic relationship, but it allowed me to see it thorugh the lense of my personal relationship with success and male identity. Great episode.

la-valen
Member

Excellent episode! It allowed me to think about relationships (family, partner, friends) outside of the box. 🙂

ben-jarmin
Member

What an amazing lady!

Cem Yildiz
Member

Man hugs are a must in the academy 😀

SatsiriWinberg
Member

Thx for yet another great delivery, insightful. Esther touches on so much more than just sex & infidelity.

David Silva
Member

Awesome conversation. Time very well spent.

dj
Member

dude, seriously ? 🙁

Arwa Stone
Member
Arwa Stone

Wow! She’s great! Absence and desire, appreciation and being thankful in a relationship. Having mentors and guts in going after what you want, love that and will apply it in my life.

Christina Cipriano
Member

What a brilliant woman! Excellent interview, Brian! So many key relationship points, such as “Desire needs space”, but I know that her advice that “There is nothing more important than mentors; they see in you what you don’t yet perceive” really hit home, because I started crying. Makes me realize what I really need to do. I need to focus on finding the right support network so that I will become the best version of myself. To keep doing what I love, and more of it. Then perhaps I will attract that partner that finds me doing what makes me… Read more »

dj
Member

I have a bit of advice for you, may shock you but I feel obliged to bring light to your soul anyway, your welcome ! So, do make yourself look attractive ! – that will help you attract partners way better than “becaming the best version of yourself”. Please, understand, what works for guys, wont work for gals.

Gaynor London
Member

Hey mr dj 😉 I don’t think there’s a woman alive who underestimates how much men love an attractive lady. But don’t be so quick to underrate your own attractiveness to women. We see you baby. The male body is irresistible. And never before have men taken such great care of themselves. Gone are the frizzy mullet-locks and shapeless dad bods of yesteryear. Thanks to Beckham and his tighty-whiteys, today’s fragrant man has epic hair, chiselled abs, hulking shoulders, and tree-trunk thighs. Hallelujah. If you think we care more about a cute shoe or some irrelevant handbag, you’d be wrong.… Read more »