Ruhegeist's Reviews > The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work: A Practical Guide from the Country's Foremost Relationship Expert

The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work by John M. Gottman
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's review
Mar 13, 2010

really liked it
bookshelves: how-to, relations-wedding, non-fiction
Recommended to Ruhegeist by: Lisa Burgess
Read from March 19 to April 03, 2010

Not so much a review as random thoughts....

Started with the proud (usually read as arrogant) statements usually found in a book like this but please stick with Gottman as he turns it around in the end and the statements are pretty understandable and justified by the end.

I believe that it always takes 2 to both make or break a marriage. While the fault is not always even, it still always takes 2. Gottman seems to corroborate. His exercises are not only for the individual reading the book but for the couple as well. I love that he is in the details of life. Too many self-help books run with the inspirational, inflate your sense of wellness and happiness that your are doing something so great for your marriage by reading that book which lasts for maybe a few days past you finishing the book only to drop you back to the reality of the nitty gritty annoying life you feel you are leading. By learning as much as possible about our loved ones, we can generate our own sense of well-being, as individuals and partners, and increase our happiness ourselves rather then looking to others to provide/inspire it for us. We'd all like to believe in the miracle cure that doesn't require work on our part but in no way would that give as deep a sense of accomplishment and faith in a strong relationship as slogging through the bog of bad habits we allowed a relationship to turn into until we get to the other side. While good relationships seem to come easily for some, most of us need to "work" at it until it does become second nature, enjoyable and we see the results of our attention.

I like Gottman's focus on respect. I like the allowance for all types of relationships from shallow to deep. I like his statement that the best marriages are those that have high expectations so don't settle.

I really enjoyed reading this book. Granted, that may not have been so true if E and I didn't already have a really good relationship. Felt my head swelling a bit until we got in a bit of a tiff earlier this week. :) Found I am not so polite or immune to whipping out a horseman or two during a fight as I'd like to think. So this will be a book that I buy and refer back to as needed. Have to give it back to my friend sometime though so I'll need my own copy if I want to twist E's arm into doing some of the exercises. Gottman has a couple other books out there that I would eventually look into as well.

Curious to discuss this with L and get her take on that pesky mention of faith there at the end of the book.


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03/20/2010 page 87
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