The Fantasy Fallacy Paperback

Exposing the Deeper Meaning Behind Sexual Thoughts

by Shannon Ethridge;

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The Fantasy Fallacy

Full Product Description

In Reponse to 50 Shades of Grey

In ‘The Fantasy Fallacy’, Shannon Ethrirdge has created an essential academically reliable, biblically sound and spiritually protective work in response to the potentially damaging effects of ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’.

"Hopefully," she prays, "This will usher in an even BIGGER tidal wave of (healthy) sexual curiosity, than Fifty Shades of Grey!" Taking the topics raised in the secular book, and thinking about how Christians should respond to sex and dominance in relationships, bestselling relationships author, Shannon Etheridge, tackles the issues head on with a sound biblical approach and without skirting around the difficult issues.

With so much talk about this ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’, Shannon is keen to promote a pastoral, biblical informed response supported by facts and real life accounts. Taking God's design for sex and relationships and comparing it to the relationships in ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ make this book an essential tool for those in ministry and those wishing to engage with the issues seriously. If you’re involved in dealing with the fall out from Fifty Shades among the vulnerable or young, this book was written with you in mind.


Describing her hopes for ‘The Fantasy Fallacy’ Shannon says that wanted the book to be psychologically sound, but biblically-based. Her professor at Liberty University, Dr. Tim Clinton, president of American Association of Christian Counsellors taught her that Satan had distorted God’s gift of sexuality even before the end of the book of Genesis, introducing corrupting and hurtful behaviours. To try and understand the psychological reasons for these temptations, she researched:

- How many people have sexual fantasies that don’t match their moral values?
- How common is it to fantasise about a co-worker or a friend’s partner?
- How many fantasise about having a same-sex partner even though they’re heterosexual?
- Why might a man may fantasise about raping a woman?
- Why might a woman may fantasize about being raped?
- What happens in the brain when a man or woman experiences orgasm?
- How exactly do our thoughts trigger (or block) that process?
- Can unwanted fantasies be avoided, or re-constructed in keeping with your values?

Overwhelmed by information collected, she designated a big wall as a “story board” and literally pieced the work together with scissors and tape.  Mapping everything out was probably enabled her to formulate an outline of what she wanted to say in the book and create the table of contents:


1.             Why Discuss Sexual Fantasies?
2.             The Benefits of Boundaries
3.             The Faces Behind Sexual Fantasies
4.             Pornography: The Fantasy Factory
5.             Bartering with Our Bodies
6.             When “One Flesh” Isn’t Enough Flesh
7.             Grappling with Gay and Lesbian Fantasies
8.             Our Fascination with Pleasure, Pain, and Power
9.             Putting Fantasy in its Place

Into the hard facts and evidence, she wove personal stories and powerful testimonies about how people learned to understand the root of their own fantasies, and overcome the guilt, shame, and negative impact of them.  So after every chapter, there are “Behind the Curtain” features that highlight these stories and help readers see how to apply the principles covered throughout the book, vividly demonstrating how to control damaging sexual fantasies, rather than allowing them to control and damage us. – Les Ellison

The Fantasy Fallacy by Shannon Ethridge was published by Thomas Nelson in October 2012 and is our 15861st best seller. The ISBN for The Fantasy Fallacy is 9780849964695.

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Publisher's Description

Erotica has invaded more than our minds - it has exploded onto our bestseller lists and into our bedrooms.

Many are looking to sexual and emotional fantasies as avenues to fulfilment. Our fantasies, however, are not reliable guides into the future -0 they are actually rocky road maps from our past. Best-selling author Shannon Ethridge theorizes, 'Fantasies are simply the brain's way of trying to heal itself from unresolved tragedies and traumas. We mentally compartmentalize our pain to make room for pleasure.'

Fantasies have deep psychological roots, and if acted on many of them can do deep psychological damage. Rather than let fantasies rule us, let's take out the sting and bring them under God's rule, allowing the Lord to heal us from the brokenness and insecurities that cause inappropriate fantasies to haunt us.

Without being judgmental or condemning, Shannon helps us dissect several common and often-disturbing topics, such as:

  • a distorted fascination with pornography
  • the mental pursuit of multiple partners
  • the lure of gay and lesbian desires
  • bondage, domination, and sadomasochism (BDSM)

With tips for controlling unwanted fantasies and resources for providing a safe haven for recovery, The Fantasy Fallacy helps us recognize and heal our emotional pain and equips us to help others do the same.

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In Brief: Eden Video Transcript

"In the wake of ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ concerns about how sexual fantasies are represented have never been greater. ‘The Fantasy Fallacy’, written in response by relationship expert and counsellor, Shannon Ethridge, equips you with academic evidence and biblical truth. If you’re working with the young or vulnerable, or anyone influenced by ‘Fifty Shades’, then ‘The Fantasy Fallacy’ may well be essential reading."


What Readers Say About Shannon Ethridge's Work

“Finally, there is a brave Christian woman out there that will talk about this subject! It's about time women get real about their sexual struggles and stop looking for love in all the wrong places. I found this book to be insightful, captivating, and full of practical application. It's thrust is towards personal wholeness and fulfilment... with or without a man! Great stuff!!! Have fun reading about her personal journey told with refreshing honesty.”

“When I browsed through this book, I knew right away that I would easily relate to it. And the more I read, the more I could not put it down. Shannon Etheridge delivers a very straight forward, loving message about bringing our lives under full submission to God's will and desire.

Having been caught up in my own struggle, I didn't think anybody else was dealing with the same things I was dealing with. But to read the personal stories that Shannon puts in her book really helped me to stop "beating myself up" and realize that I'm not the only one, and there is a way out. The biggest point that stands out to me is that sexual compromise begins in your mind and/or your heart before it manifests anywhere else in your life.”

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Shannon is a million-copy best-selling author, speaker, lay counsellor, and advocate for healthy sexuality. She has a master’s degree in counselling and human relations from Liberty University, Virginia, and has spoken on the subject to young people, students, and adults since 1989. Shannon is passionate about challenging adults and teens to embrace a life of sexual integrity and encouraging married couples in their pursuit of sexual fulfilment. She counsels women who have looked for love in all the wrong places and equips parents to instil healthy sexual values in children from an early age.

Her approach to healthy sexuality is grounded in her own painful experiences of sexual abuse and painful years as a promiscuous teenager. Shannon overcame her past to become the faithful wife she desperately wanted to be, following 6 months of individual and group counselling. Now she speaks boldly and bluntly about the benefits of sexual integrity and sexual intimacy within marriage. Shannon Ethridge is the Gold-Medallion Award-winning author of 18 books, including the bestselling Every Woman’s Battle series, the 5-book Loving Jesus Without Limits series and her book aiming to take her work beyond the Christian book market, The Sexually Confident Wife.

Shannon and her husband of 20 years, Greg, live in a log cabin in east Texas with their two children, Erin (18) and Matthew (15).


With the commercial success of ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ came the very real danger that the book could provoke a range of unhelpful feelings in a large proportion of the population. These feelings were likely to range from lust to shame, from uncontrollable desire to guilt and, somewhere in the middle, confusion. Many of the readers were likely to be young and/or vulnerable. It would fall to parents and pastors, guardians and mentors to rectify the damage and give good counsel. But where would these helpers and healers get their own good counsel?

In the autumn of 2011, relationship expert and Christian counsellor, Shannon Ethridge approached Thomas Nelson Publishers with a number of book proposals. The response was favourable, and Shannon found herself with a contract which assured her a manageable quantity of work spread comfortably over the next year or so. One of her proposed books was shelved for the time being, and that was The Fantasy Fallacy: Exposing the Deeper Meaning Behind Sexual Thoughts, a book which Shannon believed was ‘crying out’ to be written. Then in May 2012 she suddenly became aware of a fiction novel called ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’.  She quickly discovered the reasons for the book’s high media interest: bizarre sexual fantasies including bondage, domination, sadism and masochism.  “I knew, she says, “God had been preparing me for such a time as this.” But could she re-arrange her book contracts – indeed her whole life, to accommodate writing the book she’d shelved the previous autumn?

Her husband, Greg, had no doubts, “You can do it, Babe!  The kids and I will manage!”  The publishers were equally enthusiastic, if a little less accommodating, giving Shannon only sixty days to deliver her manuscript. Obviously, the book had to hit the crest of the wave at same time as ‘Fifty Shades’. Imagining herself pouring over mountains of research it seemed like an insurmountable task. Yet, believed Shannon, this was God’s plan and God had performed much greater miracles than this. The outcome is a timely response a potentially damaging phenomenon. ‘Fantasy Fallacy’, with a foreword by Stephen Aterburn, is a guide to understanding the problems, the minds of those most influenced, and an encouragement toward healing and the restoration of meaningful, intimate and godly human relationships. – Les Ellison

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Details for The Fantasy Fallacy

Author / Artist
Book FormatPaperback
PublisherThomas Nelson (October 2012)
Number of Pages256
Thickness18 mm
Height211 mm
Width137 mm
Product Code4049375
Page last updated 28th September 2017
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