Understanding the Psychological Dynamics of Modern Love Relationships:
The Paradigm of "The Erotic Hinge" and Its Clinical Utility
James Tobin, PhD
While divorce rates continue to be high, the modern couple is challenged by a host of social and technological factors that negatively impact the maintenance of long-term, healthy romantic relationships. The alarming rise of internet pornography use, the proliferation of "hook -up" apps, an emerging "sugar-daddy" subculture, and increasing rates of infidelity for both men and women are significant cultural trends that exist against the backdrop of ever-changing gender roles and what some characterize as the gradually diminishing relevance of marriage.
Are traditional notions of "love" literally fading away in this apocalyptic cauldron, leaving the human heart largely incapable of or even invested in the integration of physical and emotional intimacy with one partner for the long haul? In this workshop, I draw from classical analytic theory to articulate a structure for heterosexual romantic love that organizes male and female partners into viable revisions of Freud's "phallic position" and his notion of female psychic-sexual development.
The modern couple's capacity to attain this structure (what I call the "Erotic Hinge") is protective against the many contemporary challenges of love relationships. The Erotic Hinge has served as a useful tool in my clinical practice for individuals and couples seeking to overcome repetitive enactments, "maternalizing" dynamics, role diffusion, narcissistic and co-dependent tendencies, diminishment of sexual and emotional intimacy, and infidelity.
Dr. Tobin has presented exciting, informative workshops for OCPA. He has a private practice in Newport Beach, works with couples, families, and individual psychotherapy with children and adolescents. He is an assistant Professor of Clinical Psychology and a Supervisor of PsyD students at Argosy University, Orange, CA.
3 CE credits approved
CPA is co-sponsoring with OCPA. The California Psychological Association is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. CPA maintains responsibility for this program and its contents.
free for students
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