Category Archives: Love Stories

Love Stories
This is a series of first-person told stories about our closest connections – about the awkward, painful and ecstatic experience of intimacy with other people. I produced these stories with writer Alex Kotlowitz – who’s the author of several books, including “There Are No Children Here.” I edited and mixed the audio. These stories originally aired as part Chicago Public Radio’s series “Speaking of Sex.” Versions of many of them also aired nationally and internationally on several programs, including “This American Life” and WNYC’s “Studio 360.” A few of them were even adapted for stage by the Chicago theater company Pegasus Players. “Love Stories” won several honors, among them a Gracie Allen Award.

Love of a Lifetime: An Afterword

After sixty years of happy marriage, what’s it like to go it alone?

Florence Levy reveled in the constant conversation and companionship of her husband for over six decades. Now a recent widow, she wrestles with the overwhelming silence of life on her own.


The Genetics of Love

Can love flow from a connection defined only by lineage?

A young man searches to find his biological father, who left before he was born – and stayed away. Though he soon learns that he died a few years earlier, Peter discovers a whole family of people waiting to love him.

The Past Is Present

The ability to love or be loved can be taken away suddenly by violence. But its return comes much more slowly.

Matilde Ganzardo never thought she’d love or be loved again. Serving her Mayan community as a dedicated doctor in her home village, Matilde was threatened, followed and finally raped and tortured by the Guatemalan military. But after coming to the States as a refugee, Matilde meets a man who just won’t give up on her; no matter how many times she tells him to.

Stubborn Love

Sometimes the very same forces that sap the love from people can also restore it.

Robbin and Ed O’Harrow watched in horror as their 14-year old daughter descended from experimenting with heroin, to addiction and eventual overdose. Divorced almost a decade ago, and brought together night and day over their daughter’s grave condition, the O’Harrows struggled to hold onto their child, and to find their way back to being a family.

Mother’s Day

What happens when you love someone, but realize you have to let them go?

Unexpectedly pregnant and alone, 20 year-old Jennifer Garcia struggled with the meaning of motherhood, doing what she felt she had to do, for love.

Burying Breezy

Can you ever come to understand love if the life you live requires its very denial?

Brenda Myers left the abusive household of her childhood for the streets, to practice the only profession that made sense to her: prostitution.

This story won a 2004 Gracie Allen Award.

Soaring Above The Clouds In Beauty

Susan House leads a writing workshop in an adult-learning center, and it was going along fine – until two students fell madly in love and every assignment became another chance to express their passion for each other.

A version of this story also aired nationally on WNYC’s Studio 360.

A Different Kind of Calling

Love has a way of inserting itself in all the wrong places. Sometimes it can even shake your faith.

This is what Father Bob McClory learned when he fell head over heels for a Dominican nun named Sister Margaret.

An Almost Perfect Guy

Love has a way of working itself out.

Janice Powell met and married Nate, the love of her life. And he’s just perfect- except when he drinks. After Nate is sent to prison for 8 years, Janice discovers a romance that blossoms and experiences the best years of her married life: love letters, conjugal visits, and the guards and bars keeping Nate’s drunken violence in check.

A version of this story aired on This American Life as part of the show, “My Pen Pal.”