Marry Him: The Case for Settling for Mr. Good Enough by Lori Gottlieb
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
I'm so glad that someone recommended this book to me and I finished reading it while I am in college. This book is highly applicable for the girls in my generation who grow up with fantasy romances from movies and YA novels. They show many unrealistic matches between the rich, handsome, mysterious man and the plain, shy woman. Yet, they become bestsellers and set box office records. This goes along with Gottlieb's point that the entertainment industry is feeding on young women's fantasies and acting as enablers for their ridiculously high standards. I know I have a rigid idea of what I want in a relationship, and reading this book made me realize how close-minded I'm being. I also learned to focus my "needs" vs my "wants", look for guys I'm comfortable around vs the ones who excite me, and not to mistake "romance" for "love".
There was also a section about "alpha" men-the suave, ambitious types- that I found interesting and relevant. The main point is that alpha men typically commit to stay-at-home or part-time working mother types because they can make up for the effort that he can't put into the family and marriage due to career. That made me rethink what "dating my equal" would mean. Also, it seems that careerists need to find someone who's willing to make more of the compromises. So, I can see why Gottlieb (a successful writer) would push for more women like her to consider the supportive, considerate "beta" man type.
I thought Gottlieb's narration was highly amusing. She's somewhat neuorotic, but she has great wit and irony. Plus, her voice is counterbalanced well with the grounded rationality from Evan Marc Katz and the experts she sought. Even though Lottlieb's thoughts in the book are unbelievably irrational, she's refreshing critical about herself and it lead to many revelations for me. I never really understood why some guys think women are crazy until I read about Lottlieb's and her friends' overly judgemental attitudes and entitlement to the "perfect" lover. At the same time, I also saw those superficial traits in myself and I do think I would act similarly if I don't watch myself.
This is a great book for women who are somewhat like Gottlieb in her twenties: ambitious, career-oriented, cosmopolitan, confident in her dating value, has higher education but dumb in common sense. It really helped me figure out how I could factor career and family into my life plan.
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