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Ten Stupid Things Couples Do to Mess Up Their Relationships

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 3, 2002

    Sad Stories Tied Together with Family Value Observations

    Dr. Laura Schlessinger seems to get lots of letters and calls from people who have made some really major mistakes in their relationships. About half the book is made up of such verbatim comments. The personal stories are then grouped into 10 mistakes that women and men make in relationships (a list is on the back of the dust cover of the book), and then subcategorized according to the specific type of suberror. Dr. Schlessinger doesn¿t like much of anything about the lack of virtues and values in the Me Generation, so you will read lots of rants about individual selfishness killing off relationships and harming children. Although she picks on both women and men, the arguments are a little stronger and more frequent when it comes to mistakes women make. This is often related to Dr. Schlessinger¿s dislike of the views of more extreme versions of feminism. Her writing style will trouble some, and I certainly found it a little off-putting. Dr. Schlessinger likes to inject morality into her arguments, which is certainly appropriate. But she does so in strange ways that will take you a little time to get comfortable with. There¿s almost a flip tone to parts of the book that will either amuse or annoy you. A lot of the advice is pretty common sense, but if everyone appreciated its wisdom there would be a lot fewer mistakes. For example, you will be told to get to know someone and their background before you start having intimate relations and making commitments with them. The book is filled with sad stories of people who got carried away with their emotions, and lived to regret it. In many other cases, one or both of the ¿adults¿ is pretty immature. In more than half of the stories, one or both of the ¿adults¿ are acting as though they are not married, and certainly not like they are committed to one another. The fundamental message is that you need to build a new, combined life together. That takes time, effort, honesty, openness, and caring. If you hold back important information, it will eventually come out . . . and trust will be destroyed. On the other hand, Dr. Schlessinger does have some pretty good ideas about what not to share with your spouse, such as your fantasies about someone seated across the room from you while the two of you are dining out. I suspect that this book will only do any good if people read it before they are in a relationship. As a result, 10 Stupid Things might be a good gift from a young adult¿s divorced parents along with some candor about what mistakes the parents made that led to the divorce and how the book can help the young person avoid making the same mistake. Or, it could come as a gift from a young adult friend who has made some of the mistakes and is willing to open up about what went wrong. Look for the possibilities of what two loving people can accomplish together . . . and then communicate, communicate, communicate and support one another! Donald Mitchell, co-author of The 2,000 Percent Solution and The Irresistible Growth Enterprise

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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