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Love Between Equals: How Peer Marriage Really Works
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25 of 26 people found the following review helpful
on November 1, 1999
I think "LOVE BETWEEN EQUALS" can give any two people who really desire to have a true sense of equality in their marriage or partnership - a GAUGE by which they can isolate the important issues in relationship and a way to measure how they are doing with these issues.
If they take the various issues presented and discuss them fully and fairly, they will know what is working about equality in their relationship and which areas need work. It is not for those with namb-pamby relationship (just foolin around stuff) or those where one person dominates and wants to continue dominating - the risk of becoming equal may be too threatening.
It is not a how-to book. It does not have to be. It doesn't tell you how to achieve equality. What it does teach you to do, as I said before, is to think about what equality really looks like and how to check your relationship out.
If you want to do something about it, you will probably need other help. But this book will give you a handle on what it is you need to do and it should be thoroughly digested and discussed, before deciding what your next steps are on the way to having that sense of equality. I would be glad to discuss what I wrote with anyone.
WARNING: THIS BOOK MAY BE DANGEROUS TO LOUSY RELATIONSHIPS!
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
on March 30, 1997
This is an amazing, eye-opening book. Many couples say they believe in equality, but they also feel that the woman is naturally better at staying home with the kids, and that it just makes sense to put more emphasis on the man's career because he often makes more money.

Pepper Schwartz shows how these seemingly sensible decisions undermine a relationship of true equality. She also discusses the benefits of a truly equal relationship: the deep friendship and trust that is possible only when the two people are on equal footing.

Through interviews with egalitarian, traditional, and nearly egalitarian couples, Schwartz provides real-life examples of how people can and have transformed their relationships into truly equal partnerships, with both the woman and man sharing childcare and decision-making.

This book would make a great wedding gift!
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
on October 5, 1999
Pepper's book is a splendid read for those looking to get into a peer relationship, but still have their toes dipped into the 'swimming' pool of the traditional, patriarichal relationship...for those seeking a partner for a peer relationship, the book is also a (re?)affirmation of life's possibilities amongst equals - something that the society at large seldom supports in this schism involved in the decline of the cartesian paradigm...
the book only gets 4 stars for it's tendency to have a slightly greater sculpt towards women who want out of a traditional marraige or relationship and are seeking other modes that include equality...from the men i know, there seem to be a good number that also are just as equally bored with a ho-hum wifey, or having to be the manly man syndrome, and are looking for an equal partner...
all and all, quite a good read...a step ahead of Deborah Tannen's book, "You Just Don't Understand", and a notch below Roger Fisher and Scott Brown's book, "Getting Together, Building Relationships as we Negotiate"...
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on March 7, 2007
This is an excellent book if you are interested in learning about relationships and how they work. Using findings of a large study done in the 1980's, Pepper Schwartz, shares how certain heterosexual couples have created peer marriages. Peer relationships are common among homosexual couples, but rarely do heterosexual couples have peer relationships. Society makes this kind of union difficult for heterosexuals to attain and maintain largely due to the strong drawing power of tradition and societal expectations.

"Love Between Equals" is not necessarily a step-by-step guide to building the perfect relationship, but it brings up a lot of interesting points that provoke deep thought about what is important in relationships. Schwartz writes about the difficulties, challenges, and possible downfalls of peer marriages, but she stresses even more the deep satisfactions that are expressed by peer couples. She compares peer marriages to traditional marriages and near-peer marriages and helps to uncover some of the mystery behind common dissatisfactions that are found in these more traditional and common relationship forms.

I want to be able to make informed decisions about my relationships. The more knowledge I have the better my decision will be. In reading this book I realized that I had held some preconceptions about marriage which could have eventually been very detrimental to my happiness and the success of my relationship. One of these ideas was that, as a woman, I would be the primary parent. I didn't envision my spouse as being involved in the care-taking aspect of parenting to the extent that I expected to be. Now I realize the value in true coparenting. It keeps parents connected to eachother and makes for a more cohesive family unit.

I have been passing on information from this book since I read the first chapter, but now that I have finished it I am even more excited about sharing the powerful ideas revealed between its covers. It has encouraged me to think in depth about what kind of a relationship I want, the amount of work that is required to have that kind of relationship, and the rewards that can be experienced. This book will broaden your horizons!

E. Rootvik
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on March 7, 2007
This book is very unbalanced in that it stems form a very small group of subjects that were surveyed. It seems that all the couples were middle to upper middle class with some kind of higher education. This is important to note because of the way she talks about job flexibility. This book also neglects the role of religion and culture in the aspect of equality and tradition.

I do however feel that she has some great ideas when it comes to the "shared child" and that regardless of how that marriage works out that only good can come for the idea of a share child.

If you do choose to read this book I feel that it is helpful to note that the classification of the types of marriages tend to be very extreme. It also contains many type-o's.
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9 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on November 21, 2002
The questions of power and equality must not be thrown out of the window in the name of marriage. I have thought this for many years.
Reading "Love Between Equals" helped me discover that I am not alone.
While stressing that it takes work to maintain a peer (sexual) relationship, Dr. Schwartz paints a picture of the lasting satisfaction that results when a couple actively rejects the dominant-submissive model.
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5 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on November 20, 2012
Dr. Schwartz is a professor at the University I attend, and we were required to read this book for class. She constantly talked about how wonderful and helpful her book was for relationships, so I went into it thinking I'd learn something. I was wrong. The book is all common sense, albeit she backs it up with a study. Unfortunately though I can't tell you a single thing I drew from this book, that I didn't already know from being in relationships in the past and the present. DO NOT BUY THIS BOOK IF YOU WANT RELATIONSHIP HELP. If you need something for research on the other hand, she provides several case studies for you to go off of. Although, if you don't want to read the whole book, this may be difficult, because her content is sporadic and disorganized.

If you're on this page because you want to take the class (Soc 351) and are checking out the textbook, do not take this class. Prof. Schwartz is rude, self absorbed, her lectures are just her rambling, and her power points don't have any organization, are FULL of grammar and format errors and just confuse you.
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on December 11, 2012
You are requiring too much of my time here! I'm happy with my purchase. Leave it at that! ! !
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on September 24, 2010
Pepper Schwartz
Love between Equals:
How Peer Marriage Really Works

(New York: Free Press, 1994) 205 pages
(original title: Peer Marriage)
(ISBN: 0-02-874061-0; paperback)
(Library of Congress call number: HQ536.S394 1995)

Sociologist Pepper Schwartz interviewed several couples
who were striving to overcome the inequality
normally present in traditional marriage:
One partner earns more than the other.
One does more of the housework and childcare.
One has more power in the relationship.
The pattern of sexual behavior reflects the power relationship.

The actual experiences of these peer couples
--who strove for equality in all dimensions of their relationship--
forms the basic content of this book.
Their struggles to create and maintain balance in their relationships
should inspire others to reform their own relationships
to make the partners more equal.

Love between Equals contains little discussion of contracts,
but these couples worked very hard to transform
the implicit contracts under which most couples operate.

It seems likely that most relationships in the advanced parts of the world
will move at least some steps away from traditional hierarchy
and toward the partners being peers.
This book begins to show the way.

If you would like to discover similar books,
search the Internet for the following exact words:
"UNMARRIED COUPLES---RELATIONSHIP CONTRACTS---BEST BOOKS".
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4 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on August 18, 2003
Not only is she a relationship expert but she knows how to write a captivating book and give you unique insight into your relationship, your partner and yourself.
Having had the opportunity to meet her in person, I was thrilled to read her books and even more thrilled to take her new online personality quizes at [...]
They give you insight into your personality and the personality of your potential mate or who you should be looking for. Of course her partnership with PerfectMatch is, to coin the phrase, a PerfectMatch. You go on the site, take the tests and can even search for others who have taken the tests. You are almost guaranteed a PerfectMatch.
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