Wednesday, May 15, 2013

His Needs, Her Needs Book Review

Since I have graduated from school and don't have any plans to continue my education soon, I have decided to read. Not just reading for pleasure, but reading for knowledge. Mostly in areas of interest. My last few years in school I thought I was most interested in Marriage and Family Therapy, but each semester I found new interests. Which is why it is great I'm not yet planning to go to graduate school because I'm not sure if MFT is really the right thing for me. I have so many interests! (All within the field of psych of course)

So I have decided to read books about my different interests to keep up with current practices and to really find out what I want to study when I decide to return to school. I also think these books can greatly benefit my family life. 

My first book is "His Needs, Her Needs: Building an Affair-Proof Marriage" by Willard F. Harley who  is a clinical psychologist who focuses in Marriage and Family. 

I really loved this book. He goes beyond just what our needs are, but also how we are different between husband and wife and how we can work to meet each others needs. In the end of the book he points out that meeting each others needs makes us irresistible to one another. But when we aren't meeting the needs of one another we become incompatible. When couples become incompatible they can fall into the trap of an affair because they find someone else to meet their unmet needs.

So what are the needs? He laid out 10 basic needs, 5 which associate with the average male and female but you could be a mixture of any of the ten. The five most commonly associated with men: sexual fulfillment, recreational companionship, physical attractiveness, domestic support, and admiration. The five most commonly associated with women: affection, intimate conversation, honesty and openness, financial support, and family commitment.

So do be the irresistible man or woman to your spouse you need to meet their basic needs. So I want to be irresistible to my husband I need to meet his need of sexual fulfillment by becoming a terrific sexual partner for him, and so on with his other needs. It's important to keep all this in mind because many times in a marriage we have opposite needs which makes it hard to meet them automatically. So we must recognize our spouses needs then invest the needed energy and attention to fulfill them.

All this is important whether we are in healthy or failing marriages. In the book Dr. Harley points out the problem with our society and why we see such a high rate of divorce, "I believe our society's failure to train people in meeting the needs of others--especially the needs of a marriage partner--has played a large part in our high divorce rate. Marriage is not a simple social institution that everyone enters into because eventually he or she 'falls in love and lives happily ever after.' As long as we fail to see marriage as a complex relationship that requires special training and abilities to meet the needs of a member of the opposite sex, we will continue to see a discouraging and devastating divorce rate."

So overall I recommend this book to anyone interested in strengthening their marriage, which I think should be everyone. No ones marriage is perfect, so we should always try to find ways to make it better. 


  1. Thanks for the review, I'm sold! Btw, I'm JT's cousin's wife, not just some weirdo online stalker ;) I think you met Nick at Grandpa's funeral.

  2. I can vouch for her! It's true! Keep putting up reviews! I live seeing what others are reading.. This sounds really good! Love you sis!

  3. Priscila, I know you are Nicks wife! JT has told me a lot about Nick, but neither of us have met you yet, we'll have to visit California some time! :) Thanks Lyndsay!