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The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands Hardcover – Abridged, December 30, 2003
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"Rebound" by Kwame Alexander
Don't miss best-selling author Kwame Alexander's "Rebound," a new companion novel to his Newbery Award-winner, "The Crossover," illustrated with striking graphic novel panels. Learn more
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From Publishers Weekly
In her newest book, Schlessinger (10 Stupid Things Women Do to Mess Up Their Lives) relies upon her experience in private practice, radio and letters she received from men and women in tackling the issue of women who mistreat their men and suffer the consequences of unhappiness. The women who criticize their husbands in the stories that Schlessinger relates are depressed in their marriages and feel little love from their husbands. Unabashedly asserting that man is a "very simple creature," who needs only "direct communication, respect, appreciation, food, and good loving'" to respond with devotion, compassion and love, this controversial marriage and family therapist claims that every woman can achieve a deeply satisfying marriage if she adheres to certain fundamentals men require. Preparing dinner, caring for the children without complaint, greeting her husband with a kiss and engaging in sexual intimacy instead of "tearing down a husband's necessary sense of strength and importance" can result in the harmonious marriage women crave. While many of her listeners and readers claim her unequivocal advice has salvaged teetering marriages and improved marital harmony, others perceive Schlessinger as a throwback to what many see as years of female oppression in the home.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Dr. Laura gets back into the battle of the sexes in this new offering, which will bring Marabel Morgan's Total Woman (1975) to the minds of readers of a certain age. Schlessinger doesn't advise women to greet their husband in saran wrap, as Morgan did, but she does tell women to shape up, literally and figuratively. Women need to understand that men are sensitive creatures who want to protect and cherish their wives. Is it any wonder that marriages go bad when churlish female spouses withdraw their affection, make unreasonable demands, and don't understand the male nature? In point of fact, there is nothing wrong with (or revolutionary about) Schlessinger's core point: be nicer and more nurturing to your spouse, and he will be nicer to you. But she beats her message to death, resorting to wild generalizations; repeating ideas, thoughts, and phrases ad infinitum; and bolstering her arguments with endless examples from callers and fax writers who are all making mistakes until shown the light. Not surprisingly, Dr. Laura promises no similar title for the care and feeding of wives. Apparently there would be no fun in that. Ilene Cooper
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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I met my husband four years ago and we have been married for three years with a beautiful baby boy. Our relationship started full of passionate love. It was love of the first sight, and then after time passes by, we truly believed we were made for each other and we were each other's soul mates. We both felt the other person satisfied every fantasy we had on every dimension when it comes to the other half that's supposed to complete us. I regarded him as the manly man and my hero and he regarded me as his sweet flower. We were both around 30 years old, so we were not some teenagers who have never seen other men or women.
We got engaged six months after we met and got married six months after the engagement. We can't even wait for a year to plan the wedding! Then we had a baby a year later. The arrival of the baby changed everything. First we started to have different strong opinions regarding how to care for the tiny baby, then it's his family, then my family. All of sudden, before we knew it, we were pretty much fighting about everything, no matter how trivial it is. I felt true despair. If what we had cannot be called true love, then what can? I stepped into marriage with the rosy view that with our true l love, admiration for each other, nothing will stand in the way of our happy ever after life. The reality is the opposite.
And all the conflicts are not there because one of us is slacking off or shirking the responsibilities as a parent. We both work really hard and are terrific parents. I have a career but managed to breastfeed my baby until he is almost two. I clean, do laundry, and cook fresh delicious home-made meal for dinner every day. He works super hard at his job and he provides a great life for the family (a big house, nice cars, etc etc.). Once he gets off work, he comes home right away to take care of the baby. He devotes all his time on the weekend to the baby without me asking for it. And we truly still love each other. When we fight, we both feel deeply hurt and still care about each other. So we make up, but then something will trigger another fight a week later. The cycle continues.
So I searched for answers. I believe in solutions in every problem. Finally I came across this book. Even with all the great reviews, I was skeptical initially. Then I was completely blown away by the truth revealed in the book. For example, I used to believe since we have true love between my husband and me, so I am supposed to "share" whatever is on my mind whenever I want. If his reaction is not what I expected (patient, understanding etc., the stuff depicted in a movie), I get annoyed. So quote this book "Somehow wives have come to believe that with respect to communication, more is better. Wrong. More appropriately selected and times is better." So true! Another example is I love him so much because I think he is such a manly man. As a result, I neglected the fact that he has emotional weakness too. And he actually relies on me more for emotional support that I need him! (As we girls are natural talkers and we talk to everybody.) But I just brushed it off as he is not being himself.
I think the root of the problem is that as an independent career woman, we have been influenced too much by the feminism stuff. When I was growing up, my mom always "work hard and be independent, then you don't have to rely on a man and be his submissive wife." So I equate "a submissive wife" with "a loving understanding wife who respects his husband's opinions". Even though all these are subconscious cuz I always think of myself as a woman with traditional value, who acknowledge the differences between genders, who think some extreme values of feminism are actually hurting women. I didn't know I was influenced subconsciously!
If I ever have a daughter of my own one day, this is what I will tell her: work hard, and be independent, just because you want to be responsible for yourself as a human being, not for any other reasons. Don't have extreme views regarding men, they are not untrustworthy but they are not your savior either. Treat them as a truly equal. Respect them, love them, and they will return in ten folds.
The only negative part of this book, is that the author seems to try sneaking in some religious stuff related to God. You can just ignore it if you are not religious. Doesn't reduce the value of the book.
& by the title I did not expect it to be.
I think EVERY woman should read this book.
I picked this book up as a joke while doing a 50s housewife challenge (to head off my new job as a homemaker, having worked full-time before).
I expected it to be either very antiquated or sexist, and found it to be neither.
This book is about stuff that should probably be obvious, but sadly I think a lot of women (myself included) have gotten caught up in negative attitudes, negative talk, & negative expectations at times.
This negativity makes life worse for ourselves, not just our significant others, whom we are supposed to care about, but may not be treating them in that way.
This book showed me that some of the things I have done & said in relationships were incredibly rude & selfish/inconsiderate.
This is the 3rd copy I have purchased.
The 2nd copy I gave to my mother (also a homemaker), whom I was not sure would enjoy the book but I told her that I thought it could make HER happier.
Just this Father's Day I went over & she had actually made dinner for the first time in years. It was really good. I thought my mom COULD cook, but we (us kids) have never really seen her try until now (I think she used to when we were younger, ~4 or younger, but I do not remember).
I guess we all get caught up in some sort of entitlement like "why should "I" have to do that?!" but the question could easily be, "why should he have to do that??"
It is a QUICK read, for myself personally, it took me maybe 3 days, could take a week if you are exceptionally busy.
If you are wanting to find a way to love you husband better, be more understanding of the things he does, and not go crazy by the man things he does this book will open your eyes and help you be better. I also like her emphasis that the woman has the biggest influence on the mood of the home.
Most recent customer reviews
My wife got this book, read it and now has all these artificial expectations about what I wand and need,...Read more