What Husbands Really Think About Their Marriages, Their Wives, Sex, Housework, and Commitment
Much has been written about what women want from their relationships and marriages. But what men want has remained a mystery -- until now. In his groundbreaking new book, VoiceMale, author and journalist Neil Chethik reveals surprising truths about married men and challenges many of the myths about men that prevent couples from creating strong and lasting relationships.
Based on a landmark survey of American husbands across the country, VoiceMale reveals that most men are not commitment-phobic, that they don't have sex on their minds all the time, and that they are willing to talk frankly about their relationships -- just not in the same way women do. Men have complex inner lives, just like women. But they have a unique, masculine style of loving that focuses more on doing than talking, on sharing space rather than sharing feelings, and on side-by-side closeness rather than face-to-face intimacy.
In VoiceMale, Chethik weaves together real-life stories and survey results to create a unique portrait of the American husband. Men share their thoughts on the myriad issues that married couples face: commitment, money, careers, children, in-laws, and more. They openly discuss the character traits they seek in a woman when they're looking to marry. And they speak honestly about their struggles adjusting to marriage, raising children, balancing work and family, keeping marital sex exciting, and avoiding infidelity.
Chethik spent two years traveling across the country, talking with men of different ages, religions, and ethnic backgrounds, in urban centers and rural towns. His interviewees had been married for anywhere from a few weeks to as long as seventy-two years. He notes the enormous changes in American marriage since the 1960s and explores how men have tried to adjust to them -- sometimes successfully, often not.
Full of surprising revelations and the strong feelings that men have about their lives -- and about the women who share those lives with them -- VoiceMale demonstrates that despite their many differences, most husbands and wives ultimately want the same thing: a trusted fellow traveler in their journey through life.
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Reading Group Guide
1. Do you think men are more likely to marry women similar to them, or do opposites attract?
2. How do younger generations of husbands compare to older generations? Are their reasons for marrying different? Do they treat their wives differently than older men do?
3. Do you think it's true that men aren't interested in planning weddings? Why or why not?
4. What are the best and most challenging aspects of the newlywed stage (first three years of marriage)? Is this a relaxing time, or are the first years of marriage more stressful than later years? What are the main lessons men and women need to learn to argue/disagree successfully?
5. Why are the "family years" considered to be the most challenging for couples? Is this a more difficult time for men or women (or both)?
6. Husbands often feel their marriages improve during the empty nest years. Why do they feel this way? What types of new challenges do couples face during these years? What are the rewards?
7. How are husbands who have been married for decades different from men who have married in the last five years? How might the nature of the mature marriage change in the next couple of generations?
8. According to the VoiceMale survey, what is the link between housework and sex? How does a fair division of housework affect other aspects of marriage? Are chores usually divided fairly amongst husbands and wives?
9. Wh see more