His Needs, Her Needs: Building an Affair-Proof Marriage His Needs, Her Needs discussion


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dragging my feet

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message 1: by Eman Hassaballa (last edited Aug 25, 2016 11:05AM) (new) - rated it 2 stars

Eman Hassaballa I don't know why, but I'm really dragging my feet on this book. I find it very hard to get through the chapters. While I find the advice really useful, I still find myself getting really bored. I got married about 9 mos ago and I've applied some of the things harley's said. I've become more aware of my love bank, and I think i can feel the deposits and withdrawals. I wish I can get my husband to read this book or ANY book, but that's another issue, lol. The only criticism I have is that I think the connection b/w the issues of a marriage and a full blown sexual affair is kinda far fetched. He's the one counseling these people and that's why I don't totally discredit the idea. But the reality is, there's a big stigma associated with marriage counseling and people going through the stresses of marriage (like a newlywed) won't go see a psychologist or cousnselor. I think the sample is certainly skewed, because it's only the people who after the affair go to the counselors to try to fix their marriage. There are still a lot of people who their spouses cheat on them and just get a divorce or fix things without counseling. I think him basing it on his practice alone is skewing the data. I would rate it with at least 3 stars when I get through it. I wonder if anyone else feels the same way.


Skylar Burris I'll agree that I didn't like the "affair proofing" emphasis. I'd have rather seen him focus on how to make your marriage the best it can be, rather than "how not to drive your spouse to cheat on you." Being a Christian, it was especially unsettling to me because nothing is an excuse for adultery. I'm not saying he was excusing adultery; he wasn't; but it does feel as though the point was somewhat about how the non-adulterer prevent adultery. If you're a newlywed, it might be a little disturbing...hmmm...so, I can drive him to cheat on me because I'm not filling his love bank because I had a bad day...I did find quite a bit of valuable advice in it, and mostly it was a good discussion starter between me and my husband. I think the biggest thing I took away from it was the realization of how much he does need me just to "do" hobbies and activities with him. Some of the needs were divided on male/female lines and don't necessarily apply to every individual; for instance, he definitely has a greater need for affection than I do, but that was put in the "female" need category.


message 3: by Jacqueline (new)

Jacqueline George I haven't read the book, but find the male/female relationship in life endlessly fascinating. It is amazing to analyse a little of how your friends live together.

I live in a remote village, so extra-marital affairs are not really an issue here. Everyone knows everyone else's movements, so cheating is just not practical! There do seem to be plenty of single men around - but that's country Australia for you. Of the married ones, many have long term affairs with work, with fishing and, sadly, with the bottle.

I guess a little intelligent discussion on relationships would not go astray around here. I have just released a light hearted book on this topic (discrete self promotion here - sorry!) It is such a rich field, so much to study...


Hannah Hurley I agree that it was hard to get through, it has lots of practical points and I agree with the author that a relationship involves two people and BOTH parties have to work at it. Even though he places the blame on each member of the relationship for an affair, I believe that the majority of affairs in marriages that I have seen fall apart has all started when one spouse begins to pull away from the other. This could mean not taking care of oneself (Chapter on Attractive Spouse) or not recieving enough affection (Chapter on Affection). There were some great points, but most felt like a refreshment on things I have learned from watching others' marriages.


message 5: by Christiandude (last edited Apr 23, 2011 11:16PM) (new) - rated it 1 star

Christiandude I believe Harley in his book tries to put blame on the innocent spouse when there are affairs. This is both unfair and unbiblical. There is no justification for such behaviour.

Although he claims to be Christian himself, I think he's actually working for the enemy! His focus on justifying adultery, denies those guilty of this sin true repentance and aloso I believe he denies them the mental health help they need as well.


Heather My husband and I went through this book a few years ago when we were in premarital counseling, and to be quite honest...

...we just skipped the opening stories (the affairs) of each chapter. Just skip right ahead to the good stuff - what TO do, rather than what NOT TO do.

...Then, the part that I believe was MOST beneficial to us was the "quiz" at the back where you put your need in order. For example, a lot of women are surprised how high their husbands rank recreational companionship. Then, you can do the brainstorm together and come up with recreational stuff that you'll BOTH enjoy, so that you can meet that need of his.

So that's my advice. Skip the stories, read the meat, and do the quiz.


message 7: by Jason (last edited Dec 26, 2011 05:21PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Jason My wife and I participated in the intensive marriage enrichment group associated with this book and accompanying study guide and CDs. With us were a number of other couples, all at various stages in life - newlyweds, long time marriages (both strong and weak), divorcees and those on the brink of divorce. So, I have some very personal real-life experience with how this information is put into practice and can impact a marriage.

Based upon some of the comments, I wanted to share a few things to consider...

Just like physical health, spiritual and emotional health in relationships requires diligent, proactive work to remain strong and grow. Couples are wise to seek out biblically-sound relationship help to prevent or fix harmful influences (internal or external) from creating deep-seeded problems. Avoiding doing what is best for the strength of the relationship because of what others might think is a reason in itself to seriously consider help. No person should come between what God wants for your marriage - strength and unity!

Also, many people falsely believe that if they get themselves into the mess, they can get themselves out, and this is rarely true because of being too emotionally close to the situation to be objective. No one can do the work for you, but you need someone who can look at the situation objectively to help and support you. (This is why success drastically increases with support groups!)

It is also important to fully understand what to do AND what not to do. (We apply this logic every day in our careers.) How many people have said "Oh, that will never happen to us" or "I would NEVER do that", only to find themselves in that exact situation and not understand how they got there. Studying both sides gives far better perspective and deeper understanding of the issues and what led to them. It is often the sum of small, seemingly insignificant steps that lead you far from the right path.

The last point to remember is that in MOST cases it takes two people to make a marriage work OR fail, and this is Harley's primary point behind addressing how one person can drive another into adultery. This does not justify ANY immoral behavior AT ALL on the part of the other person. It also does not mean that fault is equally shared. This is simply a reminder of the complexity of relationships and how two imperfect people affect one another by their actions. When immersing yourself in the program, it is obvious Harley does not justify any sinful behavior.

Harley's work is biblically based from all my study and experience. When people truly put his recommendations into practice, they can be transforming. It has changed our marriage, and I have seen it do the same for others. I would recommend the book, but even more highly recommend the workbook with it, becaus this is where the information comes to life.

The book is really the foundation to get into the real study. So, don't shy away if it is a hard read - keep pressing on! Ask God to show you what he wants you to see and learn what he wants you to learn so your marriage can be a godly example of true unity!


Elly Taylor As a relationship conunsellor I was very attracted to the title as understanding our own needs and the needs of our partner if fundamental to a healthy relationship. Reading the book I found my self disagreeing with some points and agreeing wholeheartedly with others.

The main thing, though, is that couples do the same thing - read and discuss it between themselves and reveal to each other what their needs might be. It's a great conversation starter, even if not fully read or agreed with.


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