Customer Reviews: Mars and Venus in the Bedroom: A Guide to Lasting Romance and Passion
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Sex is a subject that is not often talked about among couples. Unfortunately, it is also an area that accounts for a large chunk of divorces. Women expect men to be mind-readers, intuitively knowing just what to do to bring them pleasure. Men assume that they should know what to do already, as if males are born as sex experts. (Not!) What often results is great expectations met with disppointment, and thwarted, hit-and-miss attempts at intimacy and sexual fulfillment.
With this book by Dr. John Gray, sex doesn't have to be a frustrating and hurtful guessing game. Gray explores areas such as sexual versus emotional fulfillment, taking responsibility for your own pleasure, how to increase desire and rekindle passion, a women's need to relax, the joy of quickies, passionate monogamy, and home-cooked sex versus gourmet sex. Both men and women are given maps into the murky terrain of the other's attitudes and expectations about sex, which will no doubt result in a sigh of relief by many. At last, someone understands! While providing accurate maps, though, Gray acknowledges that every person (especially women!) are unique, and as such, have unique desires, likes, and dislikes.
When discussing giving a man positive direction, Gray points out that some women do not realize a man's sensivitity in this area. Men want to please their women, so certain comments can feel like rejection to a man, which will bring an instant chill to intimacy. Here are 10 sexual turnoffs outlined by Gray:
1. "You're not doing it right."
2. "I don't like that."
3. "Ouch! That hurts!"
4. "Don't touch me like that."
5. "That tickles."
6. "Not like that."
7. "Not yet."
8. "Not there."
9. "I'm not ready."
10. "What are you doing?"
Gray then goes on to explain why a man shuts down, how to give positive feedback and re-direction, and 20 sexual turn on phrases.
The Chapter titled How To Drive a Women Wild With Pleasure provides men with some excellent practical advice on how a woman ticks, and how to rev up her engine. Gray advises:
"A man needs to remember that to increase a woman's pleasure, he needs to delay direct stimulation. Certain ancient temples are dedicated to the female aspect of God. According to one ritual associated with these temples, you have to circumambulate the temple three times before entering it. This same principle to loving and adoring a woman during sex."
One of the most practical parts of this book is that it contains drawings. Yes, drawings. How do you expect to know where to put what? Seriously, though, it's important to know about anatomy to understand what may bring a man or woman pleasure.
Gray understands the pressures that many couples face, and explains why many are having less sex. He also explains why men are like the sun, and women are like the moon. (A very helpful analogy!)
The "voice" of this book is very understanding and encouraging, coaxing men and women to re-discover the joy and pleasure of intimacy and sex. Rather than going without, or relegating yourself to frustration and disappointment with regards to sex, why not pick up this book (or something like it) and make the decision to enjoy your sexuality? It is my belief that we are given these bodies to enjoy, and the delight of sexual intimacy with our mate is a part of that. (I mean, if God didn't intend women to enjoy sex, then why give her a clitoris!)
Ignorance is *not* bliss when it comes to mutual sexual fulfillment. If you're frustrated or have given up on a satisfying sex life, take heart: this book gives great information, encouragement, and hope.
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on December 3, 2001
I've been married to the same person for 28 years and always thought our sex life was great, but when we read this book (yes, we both read it) we realised how much we still didn't know, hadn't tried, and hadn't communicated about. This book has enhanced an already great relationship - just think what it could do for one in trouble! This is written plainly, interestingly, and is very accurate - from both the woman's and the man's point of view. There were a couple of things that seemed corny to me, but may not seem that way to someone who is 20 years younger than me (I'm 48). Buy this book! I guarantee you will get at least one insight into sex that will help your love life, no matter how wise you think you already are!
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on February 25, 2004
I got it,
and it has lots of great advice! I would recommend that it be read with a lard chunk of salt (in some sections).
A couple of things made me LMAO and I had to share.
1. He devotes 1 1/2 pages in telling a man how to deliver oral sex to a woman. And not very well either. He mentions the G-spot, but basically says "It would create preformance anxiety in the man if he kept trying to find it---so he won't get too technical" so he leaves it at that.
Excuse me! I nearly dropped the book at this point (like, he could have devoted 10 pages to that alone).
2. HOWEVER, he devotes 5 plus pages!!! on giving oral to a guy! Going into extreme, intricate detail of every millimeter of area to be covered.
In reading this, there is no doubt about Dr. Gray's gender.
His justification? Men like it better than women (erm, excuse me?! Was I asked???)
3. He does this lingerie=mood chart that had me falling out of bed "If she is wearing black lace, it means she is in this kinda mood, if she is wearing white, it means she feels virginal, if she is in pink, it means she feels romantic."
Again, WHAT? How about I look pretty dang good in black lack, the pink doesn't scratch and the white doesn't ride up. Maybe he is color blind.
4. Oy, and don't get me started in the section about Quickies (I do agree to some point, but the reciprocal part isn't fair, balanced). Cuddles for a quickie? Where did he find these people! It came off as extremely cold blooded, with the woman lying there like a log being perfectly OK to the hubby (argh!) That alone would be a 'he needed a killin'' defense in a murder trial.
All that aside, it does have some helpful pointers. Buy the book used....and cheap.
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on April 13, 2000
This book was extremely helpful, I believe more so for men than from women. Men are often confused as to what a woman wants in a relationship, especially when it comes to sex, and as a result, the majority of men turn out be very poor lovers. This book is a godsend - it tells men exactly some of the things theyre doing wrong, what a woman really means when she says something, and says things that women have tried to say to men but are unable to articulate it well or are too embarrassed to express it. I dont necessarily agree with it 100 percent, nobody should, and it wont help heal every sexual dysfunction a person may have, but, for the average person, this book is great.
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on May 28, 2001
I have long been a fan of John Gray's paradigm of two separate, equal, but very different species--who misunderstand each other endlessly as they try to bond/coexist. I was surprised, however, at how much I learned from this book, since I have studied sexuality many times (in my Bachelors of Science in Psychology, in medical school, and again in my Family Practice residency.) I was also chagrined to see my own misinterpretations exposed and corrected. The one nugget of insight that stands out for me is: "Why do women generally not wish to guide a man during lovemaking." We men start out in life with few clues how to be a lover--and we're more interested in our own pleasure anyway. But women expect we men to know how to pleasure them; plus women need to lie back and relax in order to arouse to orgasm. If they stop to give directions, then they must arise out of this relaxation--which breaks their mood of enjoyment. Thus we men would do better to seek women's instruction between love-making episodes. If you are interested in correcting your own myths about the opposite gender--buy this book.
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on September 25, 2003
John Gray's book is an excellent resource for people who are interested in improving their physical relationships. After reading each section thoroughly, I realized for the first time that there was more to the enjoyment of intimacy than I had imagined. Chapter 3, titled 'Once A Year Is Not Enough', made me re-think my schedule. I still only get it once a year, but at least Gray has made me aware.
Another excellent piece of advice comes in Chapter 5, where Gray states controversially, 'Don't be afraid to experiment; try new things, like undressing. It may seem unnatural at first, but hey...we've all got wobbly bits.'
This is also a valuable manual for those just starting a physical relationship. Topics for the 'nookie' novice include 'How Come You've Got THREE?', 'Batteries Are A Girl's Best Friend', 'No, Susan, Fellatio Wasn't That Italian Film Director Married to Sophia Loren' and 'Bob and Carol and Bill and Monica'.
'Mars and Venus in the Bedroom' is a 'must-read' book. I can't wait for Gray's next one, 'Mars and Venus in the Boardroom'. Coroprate America is already ducking for cover.
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on June 7, 2012
I've read the original 'Men are from Mars and Women are from Venus' book and learned a lot about communication with the opposite sex. I was bitterly disappointed with this book.

The overall tone of this book was geared towards the sexual needs of men and how women should fulfill them. Gray talks about how sensitive a man can be to an imbalance in the sexual relationship. He sympathizes with a man that persistently has to pursue his partner, and if she is not receptive enough to his advances, eventually it dulls his overall sexual desire for her. Therefore, it is implied that the woman is responsible for the health of the sexual relationship with her partner and should consistently agree to intimacy, whether it is full-blown sex or a "quickie", regardless of whether she is "in the mood" or not. For "a woman can easily hide her lack of arousal and pretend that everything is fine," [p. 171] whereas for men, "Sex is a very delicate balance, and [they] are more vulnerable than women to an imbalance" [p. 170].

The book goes on to say that while a woman should consistently try to be ready and available to her partner's advances, she should never pressure her man to have sex if he is not "in the mood", because "[he] begins to feel as if he is obligated to have sex and has to perform for her," [p. 171] which, "[with] men, the effect of performance pressure is ten times greater [than for women]" [p. 171]. Instead, a woman should "take responsibility for [her] own pleasure" [p. 175]. If her man is uninterested in having sex, then instead of pressuring him, she should display "easy acceptance" of this and then head into another room to build herself up. Then she can let him know, in case he is interested by then, that he may "do the honors" [p. 177] of completing her orgasm.

I'm shocked and disgusted that Gray would so blatantly ignore the woman psyche and emotional responses to the same situations of being "rejected" when wanting sex or being "pressured" into having sex. He clearly sympathizes with the male and does not objectively portray a woman's responses to bedroom issues in this book. I would not recommend this book to any couple that has a relationship based on mutual love, respect, trust, and partnership, for it clearly "encourages" a woman to "give, give, give" and a man to "take, take, take" when it comes to intimacy.
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on April 27, 2008
In the words of my husband, "This guy [John Gray] has an agenda. You've got to feel bad for his wife."

After reading this book together, both my husband and I were very disappointed. My husband was really insulted that Gray made men out to be sex machines who require an orgasm in order to love and feel. I was upset that women were characterized as essentially sexless, needing our male counterparts to coax us into having intercourse. Even more annoying though, Gray devalues female orgasms almost completely, and at no time is it appropriate for a woman to decline sex. Of course women should make the attempt to pleasure their men (most will want to), but Gray has the idea that women should give it to their lovers anytime, anywhere. Seriously, I can picture Gray explaining that a woman in labor can just give her husband/boyfriend a quickie if he's feeling frisky and she's just not in the mood given that she's giving birth and all. On the other hand, according to Gray, it's hard for a man to say no to sex, so if he does, a woman should take care of things herself.

Gray's views on a loving sexual relationship were too one-sided and extreme for my husband and I. We really don't think Gray should be giving bedroom advice, nor does he seem qualified to be. (FYI: Google Gray's educational background. It's a joke. The school he received his PhD from no longer exists. Too bad I didn't realize this until we had already bought and read the book).
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on December 2, 1997
Although Gray makes some interesting points, it seems that he takes three pages to make one point. I found the pulled quotations in larger print to be distracting. If you only read those quotations, however, you would probably be able to skip most of the rest.
I found his description of his life after being a monk to be offensive. He boasts about how much sex he had after nine years of celibacy, and he seems to have approached it as a research project, rather than a means of expressing love. I find it hard to take advice from someone who obviously is not "into" a monogamous relationship, as my husband and I are.
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on June 1, 2014
I've always admired John Gray and believed that men and women truly are from different planets. My husband and I don't communicate well, about much of anything. We hit a crossroads in our marriage and I knew we had to do something or there wouldn't be another anniversary to celebrate. So I bought Mars and Venus in the Bedroom. OMG! Dr. Gray might has written this book for my husband and I! The stories, the suggestions, the ideas.....all hit home. AND it's working. I would HIGHLY recommend this book to anyone that needs a little pick-me-up in their marriage, something to get you started. I was ready to give up and get out, but this book made both of us realize that we CAN learn to communicate, we can grow closer and we can enjoy all the intimacy that we once had. Thank you Dr. Gray!
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