A single tried-and-true insight--""our everyday interactions are basically sophisticated repetitions of the childhood relationships we had""--combined with a few good examples and a lot of inspirational gab. Houston psychologist Reitman is a frank, unassuming chap: as a young ""uneducated"" corporal, he was devastated to overhear a G.I. say he (Reitman) didn't know who Shakespeare was--""because I did not know who Shakespeare was."" (""The hurt. . . became the drive that later pushed me toward a Ph.D."") More pertinently, he depicts his wife and himself at the breakfast table--she seeking praise by eating the crusts of her toast, he by keeping his hands out of his pockets. More germane still, he reports his recognition that ""nothing I could ever do"" would make his insecure mother feel good. ""That's partly why I became a psychologist. I can get a lot of love by helping people feel happier."" (But he's still ""anxious"" when his wife looks unhappy.) The directives are a loose mix of the unexceptionable and the facile. ""In real love we exercise the right to ask for and expect love back from other persons we care about."" ""If both people are willing to alter their roles, a new relationship evolves based on the interaction of two emotionally free individuals. . . ."" The cost: ""A willingness to be open and vulnerable, to take a chance on being hurt."" Some readers might perhaps be reassured by Reitman's many expressions of vulnerability--but anyone looking for actual guidance should see Lillian Rubin or Joel Block instead.