Beyond Mars and Venus

Title: Beyond Mars and Venus

Author: John Gray

Publication Date: January 24, 2017

Advice and Skills for Today’s Marriages

I’ll admit that I have never read John Gray’s book Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus though I think over the years I have gotten the general gist.

Beyond Mars and Venus is next level advice for the way male-female relationships exist in today’s world. We learn a lot about hormones, mainly testosterone and estrogen, how they affect each of us, how they affect the opposite sex, and how they affect our relationships overall.

Since our world has shifted from primarily Role Mate relationships, one where the man was the sole provider and women were the home and kid caretakers to a Soul Mate relationships where both genders are bringing home the bacon or roles have completely switched, a new set of rules applies to bridge the complex gap between male/female relationships. This book offers a new set of skills and insights into how our relationships have changed over the past twenty-five years.

List intensive and often overly repetitive, it was difficult to stay onboard at times. My husband flat out refused to read the book so explaining theories and exercises became tedious and no fun at all. Perhaps attending one of Grays workshops along with my partner would have been a better idea? He also boasts an impressive website that is run by himself and his daughter. Maybe spending some more time there would help to gel the concepts put forth in this book. There were a number of fascinating insights and aha moments however I vacillated back and forth between engagement and annoyance. I was not enamored at some of the qualities that are bestowed upon males yet lacking in females. During these times, I began to think that this book was over simplifying something far more complex, trying to put things into a neat little box. I will not deny Gray’s research and life’s work however he appears to me a male who spends a lot more time on his female side than his male side despite what he says in the book. Maybe this somehow muddies the waters, so to speak.

I am now finishing up Jancee Dunn’s How Not to Hate Your Husband after Kids and she has also done an impressive amount of research on the topic of male-female marital relationships. Some of her findings such as the housework split between the two genders conflicts with the research that Gray puts forth in his book. So who’s right?

If you are truly interested in the topic of marriage and male-female relatedness, I would recommend this book. There is enough here that is engaging and who among us could not use better skills when interacting with our spouses? However, I would make sure you are reading others on the topic as well. Some of Beyond Mars and Venus just wasn’t relatable.

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