Married third wife, Judith Sherven (a psychologist), 1988. Education: Earned Ph.D. (human behavior). Religion: Roman Catholic.
Therapist. Men's Health Network, Washington, DC, cofounder, 1992; Menswork Center, Santa Monica, CA, founder and former director; The Magic of Differences (relationship training and consulting firm), NY, cofounder with wife, Judith Sherven; Westside Gender Reconciliation Workgroup, cofounder. With Sherven, conductor of training seminars, workshops, lectures, and corporate consultations; cohost, with husband, of Wisdom radio show.
WITH WIFE, JUDITH SHERVEN
The New Intimacy: Discovering the Magic at the Heart of Your Differences, Health Communications (Deerfield Beach, FL), 1997.
Opening to Love 365 Days a Year, Health Communications (Deerfield Beach, FL), 2000.
Be Loved for Who You Really Are, Renaissance Books (Los Angeles, CA), 2001, published as Be Loved for Who You Really Are: How the Differences between Men and Women Can Be Turned into the Source of the Very Best Romance You'll Ever Know, St. Martin's Griffin (New York, NY), 2003.
Coauthor, with Sherven, of audiobooks, including Embracing Intimacy, Breaking through Resistance, Mothering the Girl Within, Fathering the Boy Within, Womanhood: Power, and Identity, Calling Men to Community, Sons and Fathers (three-tape series), You Are the Healer, The Healing Power of Relationships, and Preventing Domestic Violence. Coauthor of online column for Wisdom Networks, and of articles for periodicals and Web sites, including Chinese Women Today, Lightworks, Backlash!, Los Angeles Times, and Mensight.
When counseling couples and writing about relationships, therapists James Sniechowski and wife Judith Sherven draw from their own experiences as a happily married couple as well as from their professional expertise. Sniechowski and Sherven are well known for their books and articles about relationships and for their many radio and television appearances. The husband-and-wife relationship counselors are also the founders of The Magic of Differences, a consulting firm.
Their first book, The New Intimacy: Discovering the Magic at the Heart of Your Differences, is a guide to appreciating the differences between men and women and learning how to use them to enrich a relationship. In an interview with Bert H. Hoff and Scott Abraham for Men's Voices, Sniechowski shared some of his thoughts about the book. Being very involved in the men's movement, he explained that he "wanted to do something about relationships that would honor men, not protecting them when they didn't deserve it, but not bashing them out of hand." Sniechowski also noted that when he and his wife run seminars and counseling sessions, half of their audience is usually composed of men, which is unusual in their field. "We have said something, we've done something, we've organized it in such a way that men are finding it attractive, either consciously or unconsciously," he told Hoff and Abraham. As cofounder of the Men's Health Network, Sniechowski has a vested interest in men's thoughts, feelings, and concerns about relationships. Sniechowski and Sherven, unlike many relationship counselors, target their books toward this often overlooked gender.
Opening to Love 365 Days a Year, the couple's second book, contains an affirmation for every day of the year that readers can reflect upon. For example, the book begins on January 1 with the advice that "when you can remember your partner's feelings, beliefs, behaviors are just as important and valid as yours are, then you start off with the possibility of building a passionate, successful love between equals." J. Steven Svoboda, a reviewer for Everyman, observed that Opening to Love "addressed countless subjects that would normally be omitted from a guide to loving well, and yet are critically important to creating three-dimensional love."
According to Library Journal reviewer Margaret Cardwell, in Be Loved for Who You Really Are the couple presents "a blueprint for what they call 'the arc of love.'" Providing the foundation for the book are stories from their own marriage as well as incidents taken from their patients. Cardwell also noted that the book is full of suggestions for couples, and it has a "spiritual, New Age flavor." Readers learn to explore differences and use them to their advantage instead of allowing these dissimilarities to alienate them from their partner.
Sniechowski and Sherven have devoted nearly two decades to helping people understand that honesty, trust, and acceptance are key ingredients in the recipe for a successful relationship. "Long-term relationship is a voyage of discovery and an exciting way of being alive, as opposed to a process that one just settles into, accommodates, and ultimately is consumed by," reflected Sniechowski in his Men's Voices interview with Hoff and Abraham. "It really becomes an adventure in life, an adventure in what we call 'practical spirituality' and a meditation on daily loving. That's part of the pay-off."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Sherven, Judith, and James Sniechowski, Opening to Love 365 Days a Year, Health Communications (Deerfield Beach, FL), 2000.
Everyman, March-April, 2000, J. Steven Svoboda, review of Opening to Love 365 Days a Year.
Library Journal, September 15, 2001, Margaret Cardwell, review of Be Loved for Who You Really Are, p. 99.
Men's Voices, spring, 1998, Bert H. Hoff and Scott Abraham, interview with James Sniechowski and Judith Sherven.
Mensight Online,http://mensightmagazine.com/ (June 30, 2003), J. Steven Svoboda, interview with Sherven and Sniechowski.
New Intimacy: Sherven-Sniechowski Web site,http://www.thenewintimacy.com (November 16, 2003).*