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The Proper Care and Feeding of Marriage Hardcover – January 2, 2007

4.3 out of 5 stars 248 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

The bestselling author (The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands), columnist and talk show host does not deviate from her strong belief that women are largely responsible for happy marital unions, which should be their first priority. For Schlessinger, "feminism robbed women of their essence and their ability to find pure joy and happiness," but the fair sex can regain that by promoting a traditional relationship with their husbands. Many of Schlessinger's golden rules recall suggestions from previous books: avoid interfaith marriage, stay together for the sake of the children and never say no to a husband who wants sex. Never insist that a man wash his own dishes, either; both women and men should respect the division of labor and a woman's status as homemaker. Although Schlessinger acknowledges that men have a responsibility to communicate and recommends that they express gratitude to their wives for domestic attentions, she clearly delineates a successful marriage as one between a male financial provider and a female emotional caregiver. She includes a digression on the differences between the sexes and the masculine/feminine polarity. Though this latest guide will confirm Dr. Laura's retrograde views for many, devotees will continue to look to her for answers. (Jan.)
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From Booklist

Following up on the popularity of her book The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands (2003), Schlessinger states that her goal here is to reintroduce readers to the meaning of femininity and masculinity and how an understanding of sex roles can benefit marriage partners. Her second goal is to shine a light on selfishness, which "has become accepted in our society" and threatens marital bliss. Drawing on her experience as a popular talk show host, Schlessinger recalls the questions posed by listeners and her advice to them. Recovered feminists lament their mistaken notions of sexual equality as Schlessinger enlightens them on the power of true femininity. She expounds on the different ways that men and women communicate and how modern feminism has undermined men's and women's images of marriage and the sex roles within marriage. She offers love alerts and do's and don'ts to maintain healthy marriages. Schlessinger's fans will love this book; unrecovered feminists may not. Vanessa Bush
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Harper; 1st edition (January 2, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061142840
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061142840
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.9 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (248 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #293,460 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By K. Vigoren on January 22, 2007
Format: Audio CD
The main idea of this book is to point to BOTH husbands and wives that they have a responsibility in marriage and it starts with a good attitude. I have read "The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands" and, as a comparison, it does make a lot of similar points, but also brings out how husbands can contribute to their wife's "desire" to properly care and feed them. I think I like this book better than the feeding of husbands because it really does highlight how men and women interact to create a loving marriage. She still gives a lot of the responsbility to women, especially in the first few chapters, but she points out that men shouldn't see it as an "obligation," but as a gift to be grateful for. She tells both wives and husbands to be appreciative instead of holding expectations all the time and griping out of disappointment that you're not being treated like you deserve.

Her advice is simple. Treat them how you would want to be treated. Look for the positive. Give 110% and you'll get back much more in return. If your marriage has been rough, give it time to heal. Don't expect change overnight. Marriage is hard work, but it should be fun; not a sibling relationship. Sex is what binds men to their women (men are not just horny jerks who see their wives as sex objects). Respect each other. It's about WE not ME.

The only thing that I think I didn't like is how she rants about "feminism" so much. As a woman I think that we can just plain be bums (feminsim aside) and blame our kids, hormones, PMS, fatique, and everything else for why we don't have the energy to treat our husbands properly. I know plenty of women who don't see themselves as feminists who are still jerks to their husbands.
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Format: Hardcover
I bought this book for two friends who are about to get married (they're sometime listeners to Dr. Laura), and I found myself reading it first. Much to my surprise, I found it a real page-turner. I think people see or hear Dr. Laura on radio or TV and just instantly make up their minds about her, either loving or hating her. But when you really pay attention to what she says, and read the words she writes, she makes enormous sense.

How many of us always complain about the little things our husbands do, or make fun of their never asking for directions, but don't quite think about how we can make them feel more like "men." And in THIS book, Dr. Laura also addresses what men need to do to make us wives feel more like women. It sounds old-fashioned, and maybe it is, but it really works.

She gives "action items" to work on to improve your marriage, and actually explains in a clear manner the psychological and emotional differences between men and women, some of which I hadn't ever really THOUGHT about. I ended up buying another copy for my soon-to-be married friends, and kept the first one for myself and my husband. Even after (and perhaps ESPECIALLY after) many years of marriage, this book has something to offer to keep those home fires burning!
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Format: Hardcover
I am a man. I don't listen her radio show and I don't consider myself her "fan". My impressions from Dr. Laura and her philosophy are based entirely on this book. Well, it is really a valuable, detailed and potentially saving book for a troubled serious relationship. I agree that certain pieces of advice may seem "old-fashioned". However, I prefer to think of them as classical. The discussed principles have established as working and quite successful for centuries and the peak of divorces nowadays more or less proves that "back to bases" may be exactly what we need. I am thankful to Dr. Laura for having the courage to state 1:1 what she thinks, believes and based on numerous surveys knows is effective and valuable.

I have to say that she has an in-depth knowledge and view about relationships and ways to improve them without giving "quick-fix" tips. She makes it very clear that it takes work, commitment and care to turn around a stagnant relationship. What is more, I think that her advice to women to avoid saying "no" to sex is misunderstood. She actually presents this particular aspect as reception to man's amorous advances. The nightmare of every middle-aged man is to do not be able to back them with good performance in bed. The last thing she preaches women is to forget about themselves, their desires and career and to become slaves of their men. It is just the opposite. Dr. Laura herself has a successful career AND at the same time she does her best to adhere to all those female specific principles and qualities. Although I don't agree with absolutely everything, there is A LOT every open minded man and woman can and will get from this book. That's why I highly recommend it.
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Format: Hardcover
Getting back to the basics of marriage! Don't pay attention to the feminists who hate Dr. Laura who haven't even read the book. Feminists have sent out emails to go on sites like these and to bash the book. Guess what, there are differences in men and women. All her books have brought me and my wife closer together, by having more love conveyed to each other by serving one another. Whats the big deal about appreciating the man being the provider, and the man showing his woman love for keeping a wonderful home while raising your own kids instead of shuffling them off to a day care?

This book is not about a woman being submissive. Its about both husband and wife concentrating on our rolls and showing each other love and admoration for all the work we each do to make each other happy! If you read with an open mind, and make it acitve in your life, you will have a better marriage! And yes, I am a manly man, not some girlie man. I am a former Marine and former Police Officer. I guarantee it Dr. Laura's books make a difference!
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