So, being married to a man is like…


There actually exists a book called 25 Ways To Communicate Respect To Your Husband. It’s got nothing but good reviews on Amazon, and also I read this summary of the 25 ways, and I’m thinking now that I need to buy the book.

Not for my wife, of course, but for me.

It sounds like a perfect set of suggestions on how to survive if you find yourself locked in a steel cage with a violent, psychopathic axe murderer. Which could happen, you know. Apparently I’m supposed to smile and flatter him, and do anything he says, and never ever criticize him, and dress nicely and make sure the steel cage is shiny and pretty and keep the barbs on the razor wire nice and sharp.

I’m hoping I never get trapped in a cage with a murderer, but just in case, I should be studying up on how to survive.

Apparently it also helps to pray to Jesus a lot.


  1. PDX_Greg says


    It sounds like a perfect set of suggestions on how to survive if you find yourself locked in a steel cage with a violent, psychopathic axe murderer.

    Hilarious analogy, and tragically on-point. Men who think the source of this garbage is healthy have a psychotically twisted entitlement complex. Did I just hear a duck whistle?

  2. sayke says

    I found the author’s family website: They have a whole clown car of offspring, so this is probably all quiverfull bullshit. I thought it especially creepy that she says she “began this blog at my husband Doug’s suggestion”. It doesn’t sound like a “Hey, you’d be good at this!” kind of suggestion, so much as “I strongly suggest you do as I say.” Maybe I’m reading into it, but it’s hard to be charitable with all those clone faces grinning at you.

  3. Akira MacKenzie says

    Wait! This woman’s name is Flanders? Did Ned remarry?

    “Hi-didily-oh helpmeet! Time to make dinner or the old belt-ereno come off to remind you that man is the head of woman.”

  4. says

    @ PZ

    Ok, I’ll just come right out and say it.

    You obviously don’t get it as to how incredibly fucking terrifying life truly is. If only you would put down that zebrafish and open your eyes. Our very souls are being hunted, by terror personified. Ugliness. Filth. Perversion. Your only viable option is to make friends with the one being that has all these attributes in buckets. Focus on the one demon that will keep you safe from all the uncountable demons out there. The jailer that keeps all that shit in check:

    Baby Jesus FTW!

  5. slithey tove (twas brillig (stevem)) says

    IOW: 25 aspects of the performance of the leading lady in the hit Romance Movie.
    that’s all I got: that this listicle was for a performance piece, not wife-advice.
    Don’t go all “meta”: that being a wife IS a performance piece. That behavior is all a marriage is all about. That as long as one puts on a good act, one’s marriage is “blessed”.
    This could be “interpreted” as a riff on the overused stereotype of unhappy wives who live a second life behind her husbands back … That trope strongly implies that marriage is all an act, that this book riffs on.

  6. says


    It’s been done before.
    and The Total Woman had that stuff about saran wrap.

    Yep. Marabel Morgan, I think. That book was ineffable twaddle from start to finish, and the same old twaddle keeps showing back up at intervals.

  7. stevenjohnson2 says

    Looking at the summary it sounds like if you changed #13 to “Buy her meals at her favorite restaurants,” the book could be retitled 25 Ways to Communicate Respect to Your Wife. It would be perfectly suitable for the Christian/socially conservative husband. I suppose the issue is why it’s felt to be so important to communicate respect to husbands. I suspect that it has something to do with the perception that a husband who doesn’t make enough money so the wife doesn’t have to work is a failure. But if that’s a huge issue it seems wiser in the long run to confront that rather than expecting an individual wife to somehow repair a social problem.

  8. Sastra says

    Yes, I remember the Total Woman movement. Before that came Andelin’s Fascinating Womanhood, which is, if possible, even worse. It uses the female characters from David Copperfield as illustrations of proper femininity and has a section where you learn to stomp your feet and pout in a cute way after you install a paper cup dispenser upside down, so that your husband will melt with tender humor and fix it, loving you all the more. Yes, I own a used copy of this book, picked up long ago at a garage sale. It brought much joy and laughter to my teenage daughter and me, one fine afternoon.

    Here’s an interesting thing though. If you just read for the general ideas and cut out the entire gender crap, most of the “rules” are workable advice for both partners — IF they’re used with common sense and in moderation. Be happy, be kind, be thoughtful, listen, appreciate, cherish each other, do something nice, and so on. It won’t work as therapy for serious problems but it would probably make things nicer in most relationships.

    That’s where the danger lies. It’s a kind of bait ‘n switch.

  9. rietpluim says

    I couldn’t tell what’s it like to be married to a man but my wife seems to be quite content.