Year of the Bookwormz: 2011

52 weeks. 2 friends. 1 challenge.

Book #12: Fabookulous April 4, 2010

Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man by Steve Harvey

Book description:
Steve Harvey, the host of the nationally syndicated
Steve Harvey Morning Show, can’t count the number of impressive women he’s met over the years, whether it’s through the “Strawberry Letters” segment of his program or while on tour for his comedy shows. These are women who can run a small business, keep a household with three kids in tiptop shape, and chair a church group all at the same time. Yet when it comes to relationships, they can’t figure out what makes men tick. Why? According to Steve it’s because they’re asking other women for advice when no one but another man can tell them how to find and keep a man. In Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man, Steve lets women inside the mindset of a man and sheds light on concepts and questions such as:

  • The Ninety-Day Rule: Ford requires it of its employees. Should you require it of your man?
  • How to spot a mama’s boy and what if anything you can do about it.
  • When to introduce the kids. And what to read into the first interaction between your date and your kids.
  • The five questions every woman should ask a man to determine how serious he is.
  • And more…

Sometimes funny, sometimes direct, but always truthful, Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man is a book you must read if you want to understand how men think when it comes to relationships.

Boy am I glad this book does not speak on behalf of all men. I do think Steve Harvey is funny and if this book were a stand-up comedy routine, then ok, it was entertaining. But since the cover claims he is “always truthful”, let me dive right in on why I didn’t like it.

First of all, Steve suggests so many ways women need to take a step back to let the man feel important, appreciated, and looked up to. Ok, I get that men need to feel needed. I understand there comes a sense of being and pride that comes from having a secure job and providing for your family; these things make sense. But what I don’t agree with is being told to be a weakling and not do things I am perfectly capable of in order to let the man have his pride. And there is a difference between romantic (the man opening the door for us when obviously we can get it) and silly (waiting for the man to go to Home Depot to get the tools even though we know what we need). Why does a women need to be completely helpless and NOT do things so the man can feel needed? The security should come from within…(hmmm, maybe read Beth Moore’s book So Long Insecurity??)

Secondly, Steve Harvey tells women we have “a good month or so” of not giving a man “the cookie” (you know what he means…) before he will find it somewhere else. Really?? A month? He does take a disclaimer by saying after you’ve had a baby, men understand there will be a 6 week recovery period. Well, gee, thank you for understanding. I find it offensive to suggest that if women don’t provide that “need”, a man will go somewhere else. And I felt like throughout the book, Steve made it sound like if your man ended up doing that, you had no one to blame but yourself. Later, he’d say he doesn’t promote cheating, but the argument was not convincing at all.

Third of all, WHAT THE HECK is all this talk about meeting the kids? I am going to tread lightly here because there are a lot of single parents in the world raising children because the father (or in some cases, the mother) was of no help or support and they are better without them. And in a perfect world, every child would be raised by two parents that loved and supported them deeply. Obviously, we see more and more single parents trying to do their best. But Steve argues instead of waiting to see if you are serious about someone before introducing them to your children, you need to bring them around sooner because if they don’t get along with the kids, it’s going to be a problem. I tend to disagree with this. Children do not need to get attached to every person their parent dates. Talk about confusion.

And it’s disappointing to read about the “baby mama drama” as if everyone out there is a single parent trying to find their mate. There was way too much talk about the children (for either a man or a woman) and maybe Steve is part of a blended family. But I gotta say, as harsh as it may be, by using some of the suggestions in this book, the pattern will probably be repeated.

I’m left to question the motives of a man who is ok with his wife giving up things she loves (ex: scuba diving) because he doesn’t like it and feels he can’t “protect” her when she “risks her life”. It’s a shame that he doesn’t see what’s wrong with that picture. So HE can feel like  man, his wife gives up what SHE enjoys and is even CERTIFIED in! Unreal…

Ladies, do NOT stop being strong and independent women. You can need your man and make him feel that way without pretending to be a weakling you are not, which in a twisted way is what I think Mr. Harvey defines as a “lady”. And if your man wanders to another woman, I’d argue he’s got other problems that don’t involve you. If he was in a committed relationship, he wouldn’t need to cheat.

Nobody is a relationship expert, and we all learn with each one. And sure, I may be more on the old fashioned side with some of my beliefs. But I definitely disagreed with a lot of ideas Steve Harvey writes about in this book. I would not recommend it for anyone, except maybe the “serial daters”. It’s good to have standards and put value on yourself and if you don’t already know that, this book could sober you up a bit.

Either way, I do not believe this is a groundbreaking relationship book. I don’t even think a lot of it is good advice. I was disappointed, at best.

2 out of 5 stars…

Happy Reading,