The Ellie Blog

Mental health tips and insights

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Building Strong and Lasting Relationships: Top 10 Relationship Books

Everyone knows that relationships can be tough at times. There are plenty of self-help books out there that promise to improve communication or decrease conflict, but how do you know which books you can trust? I recently surveyed numerous therapists all over the country at Ellie Mental Health, and they shared their go-to relationship books.

So whether you are casually dating, recently married, or well into a long-term partnership, check out these books and tips that our therapists recommend to their clients (and even to their own partners!).

Foundations of Healthy Relationships 

These are the most-recommended books that our therapists shared! The following books go in-depth about what makes up a good foundation for relationships and how to improve (or recover) your bond.

The 7 Principles of Making Marriage Work by John Gottman and Nan Silver

What Makes Love Last by John Gottman and Nan Silver

Rekindling Desire by Barry and Emily McCarthy

How We Love by Milan Yerkovich and Kay Yerkovich

How to be a better communicator

Good communication is the backbone to any healthy relationship. When you have open and honest communication, you build trust, strengthen your emotional connection, and create the space where both partners can be themselves without fear of judgment. It’s the tool that helps you weather the storms, resolve conflicts, and celebrate your successes together. Whether you’re just starting a new chapter in your love story or looking to deepen an existing bond, get ready to discover why good communication is the backbone of any happy partnership with these books.

Eight Dates by John Gottman

The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman

Hold Me Tight by Dr. Susan Johnson

The Dance of Connection by Harriet Lerner

We have a brand-new printable for you and your boo! Check out our conversation starters for your next date night here

Strategies to overcome challenges together or improve conflict in your relationship

Do you feel like you’re stuck in a conflict loop with your partner or dealing with the same challenges over and over? These books provide helpful tools around conflict resolution and improve communication together. Plus, #10 includes couples activities that can build deeper and stronger connections.

Rock the Boat by Resmaa Menakem, LICSW

Freaking the $#@% for Couples by Erin Pash, LMFT

Are you navigating or approaching divorce? Check out our recommendations for how to deal with divorce or uncoupling here:

Remember that even the most enduring partnerships face their fair share of ups and downs. But armed with better communication skills and some handy strategies for dealing with challenges, you and your spouse can tackle anything that comes your way.

About the author

Miranda Barker headshot

Miranda Barker, MSW, LICSW

Director of Content and Production

Miranda specializes in working with people who have been touched by adoption or foster care (birth parents, adoptees, kids in foster care, etc). She enjoys working with people of all ages. Prior to joining Ellie, Miranda spent several years in the non-profit adoption field and then as a child protection investigator and case… Read more