Open: Love, Sex and Life in an Open Marriage

Overview

Finally, a book about open marriage that grapples with the problems surrounding monogamy and fidelity in an honest, heartfelt, and non-fringe manner. Jenny Block is your average girl next door, a suburban wife and mother for whom married life never felt quite right. While many books on this topic presuppose that the reader is ready to embrace an “alternative lifestyle,” Block operates from the assumption that most couples who are curious about or engaged in open marriages are in fact more like her — normal people...

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Open: Love, Sex and Life in an Open Marriage

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Overview

Finally, a book about open marriage that grapples with the problems surrounding monogamy and fidelity in an honest, heartfelt, and non-fringe manner. Jenny Block is your average girl next door, a suburban wife and mother for whom married life never felt quite right. While many books on this topic presuppose that the reader is ready to embrace an “alternative lifestyle,” Block operates from the assumption that most couples who are curious about or engaged in open marriages are in fact more like her — normal people who question whether monogamy is right for them; good people who love their spouses but want variation; capable parents who are not deviant just because they choose to be honest about their desires. Open challenges our notions of what traditional marriage looks like, and presents one woman's journey down an uncertain path that ultimately proves open marriage is a viable option for her and others.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781580052757
  • Publisher: Avalon Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 3/1/2009
  • Edition description: First Trade Paper Edition
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 500,068
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.20 (h) x 1.00 (d)

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Sort by: Showing all of 5 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 4, 2008

    One of the best written books on alternative marriages

    Jenny Block has written a thought-provoking book that will force many people - if they have the guts to read it with an open mind - to question everything they believe about what marriage represents in today's society. She lays out in a very logical, understandable fashion why it is acceptable for couples to question societal norms about what is the 'right' way to conduct their marriage. The book provides a roadmap of how she and her husband, through open communication as well as some trial and error, discovered an arrangement that works for them. While their form of marriage might not be right for everybody, if only a small percentage of the book's readers have their eyes opened about what it takes to challenge the expectations of others, then it will have accomplished its goal. The book is very well written and accessible 'other than that little issue of the word 'Timer' being substituted for 'matter' throughout the first half -- this must have been missed on the proofs'. The clear language is accessible to the average reader, and most will understand just how the author's transformation occurred, without any gaps in the narrative. One strength of the book is her story about how she dealt with friends and family who questioned her choices. Another strength is her discussion of parenting in an open relationship, an important consideration I'm sure for many couples with children who are considering open relationships. In a time when alternative relationships are receiving much attention in the mainstream press - and much of it derogatory and scornful - this book is an important description of how they can work in the real world. I first read 'Open Marriage: a New Life Style for Couples' by Nena and George O'Neill over thirty years ago. Jenny Block's book updates the concepts the O'Neills laid out for today's couples and today's society. Even if you are not considering anything like this for your own relationship, the book is an interesting and provocative biography.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 3, 2008

    With a Mirror

    I found this book to be not only compelling, but one I could identify with personally and appreciate professionally. Block's experiences are shared by many, some who are public and open 'pardon the pun' about their lives, their struggles and their choices, and even more who face the challenge of creating relationships and finding love that feeds them seemingly alone. This book is a refreshing and candid exploration of a journey of one individual and one family seeking the love, support and intimacy desired. And in this experience of one, the experience of many is touched upon, reflected, challenged and refracted. Block's book allows readers to have a glimpse into love, sex and life for another person, knowing her thoughts, feelings and ideas. And while we have the opportunity to microscope into Block's life, we are challenged to take the mirror to our own just as she has.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 8, 2008

    A Fascinating Example of Polyamory Gone Mainstream

    This book is a revelation. It is a memoir of the author¿s life as a mainstream bisexual woman who, try as she might, couldn¿t find the kind of fairytale fulfillment promised by traditional marriage. She has a supportive husband and a young daughter who are the center of her life, as they should be. But still, there were issues in her marriage, the biggest one being that she and her husband have different needs in terms of frequency of lovemaking. She¿d had relationships with women before marriage. She thought she could do without them when she decided to do what everyone thinks they are supposed to do and get married. Despite giving the traditional suburban wife and mother role a solid effort, it left her feeling so dissatisfied that something had to change or her marriage wouldn¿t survive. There is no book on polyamory and open relationships like this one. It takes tremendous courage for a mainstream woman to publicly lay her heart and soul bare as the author has here. She openly shares with us her most intimate thought processes and desires through every stage of her adult life, beginning with her experiences exploring her sexuality in college, up to and including details of her and her husband¿s challenges and experiences opening their marriage. I especially enjoyed the husband¿s afterword. The author is smart for including his perspective in his words to correct misperceptions that her husband and daughter are the innocent victims in all this. The husband makes it clear that he is a co-partner in this adventure, even though partnering with others is not as high a priority for him as it is for his wife. Another of this book¿s strengths is the author¿s point of view on how multi-partnering while raising her daughter is a good thing. It¿s pretty clear that she and her husband are good parents to begin with and that every decision they¿ve made has been made with their daughter¿s best interests in mind. This author has a gift for eloquently articulating the issues and intricacies with which non-monogamists grapple. She cites a variety of sources to support her point of view. She also uses the word ¿polyamory¿ to describe her marriage and relationships, especially later in the book when her sexually open marriage naturally transitions to make room for love and romance with more than one. This book may well play a pivotal role in the mainstreaming of polyamory. Through the efforts of a good publicist, it has gained the attention in three mainstream women¿s magazines. The June 2008 issues of Redbook, Marie Claire and Glamour all have interviews or shorter Q&A¿s with the author about her book and life. It is available on the non-fiction new release tables at Barnes & Noble and Borders. There is nothing more mainstream than that.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 29, 2008

    Openly Boring

    The author preaches and pontificates and you can't help thinking she's trying really hard to convince herself as much as the reader. She also seems to have a major case of rationalization when she really needs to face up to her own sexuality issues. There are two tragedies here, the author's poor young daughter who lives with this mess and anyone who spends good money on this boring book.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 29, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

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