Saving Your Marriage Before It Starts: Seven Questions to Ask Before and After You Marry
Saving Your Marriage Before It Starts: Seven Questions to Ask Before and After You Marry

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Product Description

Meeting the needs of a generation overwhelmed by divorce odds, relationship experts Les & Leslie Parrott share seven key questions to help couples identify and overcome stumbling blocks to a building a healthy, lifelong marriage.

Customer Reviews:

  • Great Pre-Marital Counseling Book!
    This book is full of very helpful information that's written in a concise, interesting manner. I loved it!...more info
  • CD Player wouldn't read 1st CD
    The first CD of the 4-CD set wouldn't read in my car radio, so I started with #2. This book came highly recommended, and I drive so much I thought I'd try a book on tape. It is in fact a really great book (so far), and it's nice to have it read by the people who actually wrote the's very hard to misinterpret anything in the book. I think I will have to buy the print version though...I find it a little hard to really absorb what's being said while driving....more info
  • Poorly-Written Book
    This book is written by a husband and wife team seeking to guide couples through a very specific type of premarital counseling. Unfortunately, the authors rely heavily on their own marriage experiences rather than accepted social science in providing counsel.

    This kit includes a hardcover book as well as two separate, "gender-contextualized" workbooks. The male workbook provides guidance on issues that the authors claim to be male-specific and the female workbook provides guidance on issues the authors claim to be female-specific. For instance, the men's workbook includes advice on positively redirecting anger when the wife is late with dinner or frequently forgets to run errands or do her chores. By contrast, the female workbook discusses ways to positively redirect anger when the husband spends too much time watching sports, forgets to celebrate the first anniversary of their first date, comes home late from work, or criticizes how long she takes getting ready.

    In the hardcover that accompanies the workbook, the Doctors Parrott claim that science has proven these gender differences to be hard-wired and not merely social. They substantiate this claim with evidence from their own marriage experience and use a number of tautologies, circular references, and decontextualized quotes from other self-help authors as grounds for their conclusion.

    For example, on page 104 of the hardcover book, the Parrott's recount an instance in which gender differences caused a dispute in their own marriage and go on to claim: "Our differences are not unique. They are universal: Men are motivated by achievement, women by relationships." The Parrotts footnote this claim and the corresponding reference cites not substantiative evidence but rather two other self-help books: "As for Me and My House" - Walter Wangerin and "Men Are from Mars, Women are from Venus. - John Gray"

    Even within these circular references, the references themselves suggest the authors may not have fully read or understood the material they cite. For instance, the authors quoted Dr. Harville Hendrix's "Getting the Love you Want" to provide substantiation for a claim Hendrix actually takes pains to dispute in his own work. The Doctors Parrott claim that one partner cannot resolve unmet childhood needs of the other partner. The Parrott's citation of Hendrix was structured to suggest that he would substantiate this claim, however, his own work suggests the opposite is true.

    Overall, much of the content is likely to be offensive to many readers. The book includes anecdotes and stories about gender roles that many will find misogynistic or sexist. (The book claims that, universally speaking, men get self esteem from accomplishments, while women get self esteem from relationships). What's more, the workbooks ask couples to answer questions relating to the sexual conduct of their parents.

    Beyond the potential for offending readers, the book is clearly geared toward very young couples, just out of college or still living with their parents, who might be getting married. Couples with even the most basic communication, budgeting, and relationship building skills will find the workbooks remedial and, unfortunately, the book spends very little or no time at all on more sophisticated topics like in-law and family dynamics, childrearing and discipline philosophy, or other important topics that might appeal to couples truly seeking tools to strengthen their future or current marriage.

    Premarital counseling can be made very useful and relevant, but this book fails to connect on both counts. ...more info
  • Awesome Book!!
    This book is really great-- i recommend it to anyone married or thinking about getting married. Its really easy to read, practical-- it really helps you get along better with your partner and better understand him/her....more info
  • Helpful guide
    Easy to read and follow, applicable to real life, suitable for individual, couple or small group study. I recommend the companion workbooks, too, in order to get the full benefits of the book....more info
  • excellent study for ALL couples
    We're using this book in a Couples Sunday School Class as a study guide and are working through the chapters and workbook questions together. It's true that more planning goes into the wedding than the marriage. Sooner or later we have to put work into the marriage to make it work and to enjoy the fullness of the union got intended. Well written. Thought provoking. ...more info
  • great ideas
    This book brings up all sorts of things you'd never think to talk about, in a non-intimidating way. It's easy to schedule out the different activities to talk about, say, once a week with your fiance. But, you definitely should buy the workbooks too....more info
  • Great Book
    My Girlfriend and I are going through this book and it has helped us think through many issues that we would not have thought of. SYMBIS has tons of good insight and advice...more info
  • Wow
    I really like Les and Leslie and this book is great! I am giving it to a young couple who is about to get married and I trust it will help not only with pre-marital, but marital questions they will have but will never ask mom or dad or anyone else....more info
  • Definitely One to Own!
    Having counseled many couples in 25 years of pastoral ministry, I have read several books on marital, interpersonal relationships. The authors present sound principles that are easy for people to understand and to apply. I had a few older favorites I would recommend to couples until reading this book -- now I have a new favorite to share instead!

    One of the unique, most admirable qualities of this work is that it is very helpful to persons regardless of their marital status. A single individual will find it helpful for insight during dating. A person who is engaged will find it helpful in identifying issues that are sure to arise within marriage. A newlywed will find it helpful in responding to the major adjustments of sharing his/her life with another person. A person who has been married for several years will find it helpful in understanding how a marriage deepens and grows over the course of time.

    I strongly recommend this book to anyone wanting to enhance an upcoming marriage or an existing one. There are accompanying workbooks, one for men and one for women, that are also very helpful. This book is definitely one to own!...more info


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