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The Bitch in the House: 26 Women Tell the Truth About Sex, Solitude, Work, Motherhood, and Marriage Paperback – September 16, 2003
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Not entirely angry, it is ultimately a satisfying read. There are no intended messages on how women can improve their relationships with their husbands, partners, and children. That is the beauty of the book. They have instead revealed modern motherhood, and solitude, as it is, and may have been all along. --Karin Rosman --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
Don't be put off by the title -- or by the common misrepresentation (like by Katie Couric on the Today Show) that it's the whining of women who seemingly "have it all." The point is, you CAN'T have it all, and have to try to forge happiness anyway. Crack it open and you won't put it down.
My favorites include "Atilla the Honey I'm Home" about a woman who is ultra cool and competent at work and then comes home and takes out all her stress on her family. "How We Became Strangers" about the effect the arrival of a first child has on marital bliss. And "Crossing the Line in the Sand" about losing your temper with your kids.
The book is organized in rough age order of the contributors, so it starts with women in their twenties just on the cusp of What The Future Holds, and ends with a few in their (60s?) about the roads taken and not. In between you have a wide range of experiences -- fidelity and not, equal parenting and not, successful relationships and not, getting married or not, feeling good about work or not.
These aren't easy issues and the book confronts them head-on. The essayists don't provide solutions so much as comfort -- a community of like-minded souls who realize what we're all up against and are trying to make sense of it all.
Obviously, I didn't relate to all of these women -- some I thought were a bit triffling and way too self-absorbed.
But reading some of these stories was like reading my own journal, but more eloquently put, especially "Excuse me while I explode", and "How we became strangers".
I was comforted to know that I'm not alone in my daily struggles to be a good Mom, wife, friend, daughter and co-worker. Just that fact alone helps me to exhale and be grateful for all of my plessings.
Also, I hate to say it, but a lot of these women come across as whiny. I know, I know. I'll get kicked out of the feminist club for saying it (and trust me, I've paid my dues), but there's a lot of delusion among these women. They seem to expect the men in their lives to behave...well...like women. And that just isn't realistic. There's also a lot of justifying of what in my opinion is questionable behavior. Personally, I found the essay by the woman who had a married man's baby really frustrating. Not because she kept the baby and went on with her life, but because she seemed to have no guilt or remorse about sleeping with a married man. It's as if the man's wife doesn't exist at all to her -- she's written off in one sentence (did she ever even find out her husband fathered another woman's child?).
There are some terrific pieces in here, and the writing is very strong, but overall it was a depressing disappointment.
The stories were good, and written well. I especially liked the story about having houseguests by Chitra Divakaruni, because it talked about differences between Eastern and Western cultures.
However, I also felt a lot of these essays had an underlying self-indulgence, self-absorbedness and sense of superiority about them; almost as if the authors were unconciously bragging about their oh-so-stressful, over-achieving, affluent lifestyles while soliciting sympathy from the reader. "I never realized how difficult it would be to have it all: a loving husband, kids, a great career, the latest SUV!" If these women had been single working-class mothers with low-paying jobs, I would have felt for them much more.
I especially thought the woman in Sarah Miller's story was pathetic for feeling superior to her friend because she had a fiance and her friend didn't. It's like: grow up, already. She claims to be in her late 20s/early 30s, but to me she sounded more like a neurotic teenager. I also noticed that many of these women - including Sarah Miller's protagonist - admitted that they preferred men who were financially well-off. To me, these are not very feminist attitudes, and the women in this book are supposed to be so liberated. Talk about hypocrisy....?
If anything, this kind of mentality makes these authors sound more like shallow, spoiled Rules girls at heart.
If you want to know how yuppie women live from a sociological perspective, or you're dying to be one of them, then I highly recommend this book. There's also a male version of this book called the Bastard On The Couch, which I haven't read.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Illogical rants. I'm a strong feminist. This book makes women look bad.Published 7 months ago by amber
Sounds like a bunch of cry babies with no "real" ( put food on the table) problems. Very little if any sympathy for any of them.Published 8 months ago by jms
Bought this to accompany the male's point of view, The Bastard On The Couch. Thought it would be interesting to see how they play off one another.Published 15 months ago by annonymous
When I first started reading I found the book to be humorous, relatable, and insightful. However, after reading the last few essays, I was completely disgusted and didn't even... Read morePublished 15 months ago by Jaylou
This was a book club pick and I was not sure I would like it (expected a lot of whiniing). But the writing is terrific and it inspired some great conversation/discussion at the... Read morePublished 19 months ago by Marie McClellan