UNH Professor's Book Offers Advice for Love Lost

By Tracy Manforte
UNH News Bureau

DURHAM, N.H. -- Psychologist Dwight Webb isn't ashamed to say he wrote the self-help book "50 Ways to Love Your Leaver: Getting on With Your Life After the Breakup" partly to help himself.

The University of New Hampshire associate professor of education knows that when a serious relationship goes sour, at least one person is left experiencing a range of emotions, from confusion and denial to sadness. Webb, who teaches a graduate course in counseling, not only rode the emotional roller coaster himself, he recognized its twists and turns and developed a method for getting off with his sanity intact.

"It was so profound for me to discover that my grieving was going through a process. I looked at myself and I knew I felt different in March than I did in November," he says. "I have also counseled couples in the same situation, but this book focuses specifically on the person in the relationship who has been left." Webb has captured that healing process in a book that mixes personal anecdotes, several chapters on grieving and healing, and, of course, 50 ways to tackle life after the breakup.

Webb's whimsical take on the classic Paul Simon song "50 Ways to Leave Your Lover" forms the introduction to the book's final chapter:

Admit the hurt, Curt
Face the pain, Jane
Try not to deny, Di .....

At this point, some four years after the breakup, Webb was emotionally stable enough to poke fun at his bachelorhood and came up with 50 do's and don'ts. "This fit so well with my idea of not getting mired down in blame and anger," he continues, "that I began to write down as many ways as I could about how to love your leaver. I do list 50 ways, but to tell you the truth, there are probably 150."

Those quick tips formed the basis of a more serious and in-depth look at a recovery process that teaches readers how to cope, forgive and get on with their lives. "Fifty Ways to Love Your Leaver" is part of the Impact Publishers series of "rebuilding books for divorce and beyond."

February 8, 2000

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