Beckie's Reviews > Love and Respect: The Love She Most Desires; The Respect He Desperately Needs

Love and Respect by Emerson Eggerichs
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Jan 03, 10

Read in December, 2009

It's hard for me to know what to make of this one. The premise of "Love and Respect" is that in a relationship women most want to feel loved, while men most want to feel respected. That may be true in most cases, but the evidence in the book is all anecdotal, so it's hard to know.
I had heard this argument before, and tried to be really open minded reading the book. What do I know?
Eggerichs has built his book (and all seminars and so forth that have surrounded it) on this generalization and one Bible verse. He uses many anonymous stories from people who have taken his message to heart and benefited from it. This style didn't do much for me.
The book is heavy on acronyms and gets more that a little repetitive. He spends a lot of time describing what he calls "the crazy cycle." Maybe it's the inevitable result of being raised by a social worker, but it's hard for me to take someone seriously when they use the word "crazy" lightly.
Eggerichs mostly comes off as a rational guy, but there's the stray wacky comment (daycare: horrible for your kids!) to make me shudder. I started to feel like Eggerichs knew he had to say women are as good as men but didn't quite buy it himself. Maybe I am being unfair, but it felt that way to me. He also does the thing where he takes verses really out of context to make them seem to be about the thing he's writing on.
In the end, I think his main point probably has real value. It's no good to express love in a way that isn't meaningful to the person you love. This seems true beyond marriage relationships and in areas of personal preference as well as gender difference. Yet it seems to be human nature to think everyone likes what one likes, is how one is. From that perspective, the book has something to offer. But it could have been half as long and made its point better. The three stars are because the main point is food for thought/talk.
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