John Gray – “Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus” (22/52 books challenge)

Men are from Mars, Women are form VenusOk, here’s a thing – I should stop reading these things. I have never found a “hand-book” or a “guide” – as you may – that I would like. Including this one. I sort of expected what was coming – but still I gave it a try, because my male friend recommended it. Also, it’s famous. “Everybody knows about it,” so I should read. Right?

Wrong.

So, generally speaking – women were born and raised on Venus, and men – on Mars. They lived separately for some time, but they were missing something, and finally they found each other. But they forgot that they came from different planets, and that they are different from each other – and this is the main reason for most fights and problems with marriages and relationships in general.

So far, so good. There are a few problems, though. Let me write in just a few sentences what we can learn from this book:

  1. A woman should go shopping when her (male) partner decides he needs alone time. Because he needs alone time quite often, and you can’t do anything about that and you just have to be supportive.
  2. A man can just leave whenever he wants to, because he needs his alone time in his “man’s cave” – see above.
  3. Women need someone to listen to them, and men don’t ever talk about their problems. Never ever.
  4. Men have very fragile egos and women are over-sensitive and over-emotional.
  5. Basically, if man listen to women and if women leave their men alone whenever they need to, and if they don’t criticize when they lost their way and won’t even ask for directions, you will have a happy relationship.

No kidding.

First of all, I couldn’t stop feeling that this book is a little sexists. Yes, I do sometimes need to talk, but sometimes I also need to just need to be silent. Yes, I guess most men need their “caves,” but fuck it – so do I! So what am I supposed to do about it?

GO SHOPPING??? Newsflash – not all women love shopping. I don’t.

Okay, maybe some of Grey’s advice is actually helpful, but it’s neither profound, nor original. By some experience and listening to the other person, you can just easily find most of this stuff out by yourself.

Also, I so, so, so hate simplifying. Simplifying and stereotypes. And there are plenty of those here. But that’s sort of my fault, too. I should have known that a creature as complex as a human being cannot be put into one book, but still I read this.

And this problem I have with all these kinds of books – it’s painfully repetitive. I always think this sort of psychological mumble would look better in a longer article, not a whole book, where a lot of things are said a lot of times, just in a (semi) different way.

One more thing – the book is cheesy. It’s one thing to say once that women are from Venus and men are from Mars, but to repeat it over again is a different thing entirely. Please, get over this silly comparison and try to remember it’s just a fantasy you’ve invented. I didn’t find this metaphor helpful at all, I found is funny and sometimes confusing.

But maybe that’s because I basically think we are all humans, and that is the most important thing. Above all, above gender, race, religion, interests and things like that – most of all, we are humans.

Well, anyway, since I’m writing, let me rant about one more thing, but it’s not the book’s fault. I mean, what’s up with the not asking for directions thing? I know, I know, it’s stereotypical, but I’ve met too many guys that have this to dismiss it. I mean, it’s so freaking unreasonable and impractical. Is it really better to find the way on your own and be half an hour – or more – late, than to just ASK and be on time? I mean, being late is disrespectful to others, so I can’t believe that any normal person would really look for the particular place AFTER BEING already late and not ask for directions even once – and yet Grey tells us, women, to be fucking patient towards their men in these situations, because they just can’t do it differently.

facepalm

Overall, I’m gonna stop reading books like this entirely. I am a fiction kind of girl and I will stay that way. It’s not because I think I know-it-all and I don’t need advice. In fact, usually I just think I know nothing and everybody else knows everything so much better than I do. But I don’t want to read any sort of guides, psychological crap, do-it-yourselves or anything like that, cause I think they are repetitive and very often quite naïve.

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