Or, in other words, is Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus still relevant in this day and age?
Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus is a book that everyone is aware of and most women have read at least once in their life’s. It has sold more than 50 million copies and is still a huge part of popular culture; constantly being referenced in movies, TV shows and more. It’s Georgina’s ‘boy bible’ in Angus, Thongs & Perfect Snogging, and I myself used to steal my mum’s copy and read it when I was a teenager, in hopes to get into the mindset of why men acted the way they did.
Some parts of the book have stuck with me since then but when I found it in my room the other day, I decided to re-read it to see if it was still relevant, not just in this day in age and in the way that modern dating is, but also now that I’m a bit older and I’m in an actual serious healthy relationship.
The whole basis behind the book is that men are originally from a different planet than us ladies, and that’s why there’s so many differences between us, especially when it comes to the way we deal with conflict.
I’ve never thought guys were that different, until I sat down and re-read this book and realized that expecting my boyfriend to communicate and deal with things exactly the same way I do isn’t helpful.
So I thought it would be fun to go through and briefly touch upon each section from the book, noting whether or not it’s still relevant!
The general idea behind this chapter is that when a woman is upset or stressed, a man tries to fix the problem rather than comforting her. On the other hand, it also focuses on the fact that women like to ‘improve’ men by helping them grow – causing him to feel controlled as opposed to accepted.
Do I think this is still a problem (or ever was a problem?) in relationships? Yes and no. I can definitely agree with the ‘home-improvement committee’ theory – since getting with my boyfriend, I have wanted to help him a lot. I do tend to nag at him to sort all his bills out and stuff like that, but luckily I tend to pull back sometimes and remind myself that he’s a grown man who can look after himself! I think women wanting to help their man grow and be their best selves is definitely still very relevant, but I don’t think it’s necessarily a bad thing anymore. These days, Facebook is filled with meme’s about woman being ultra proud of their other halves which is good.
I’ve never been the type of person to go to a boyfriend about my problems – usually I just let everything get on top of me and throw a tantrum! So I can’t say I have a lot of experience with ‘mr. fix-it’. I do sometimes have to remind my boyfriend that if I’m upset, usually I just need a hug or a cuddle to feel better, but likewise, he never really tries to ‘fix’ my problems.
Still relevant? The jury’s out on this one. The home-improvement committee is still at large to a certain extent, but I think men have learned to give Mr Fix-It a rest.
MEN GO TO THEIR CAVES AND WOMEN TALK
According to this chapter, when men are upset or stressed, they like to go into a man-cave until they feel better. Women like to talk, talk and talk.
THIS. This is super relevant. I never actually noticed the whole man cave thing until I re-read this book and then was like ‘ooooh so that’s what Vincent does when he games’. The boy can go into a world of his own and whilst I’m missing his attention, I now see it’s his way of distressing from work (or me).
On the other hand, I definitely talk when I’m stressed or upset. Though I usually need a hug, rambling helps a lot too and helps me get things off my chest.
The idea of man caves has actually really helped me be more supportive of my boyfriend when he needs his space. I know now to just leave him be and do my own thing, and he knows to reassure me to let me know he just needs a bit of space and will come back to me when he can. I still struggle to accept this when we have an argument (I tend to think it’s not fair that he should have space when the argument/he has upset me), but it takes time.
Still relevant? Yes. 100% yes.
HOW TO MOTIVATE THE OPPOSITE SEX
This chapter is a little confusing, but from what I can gather, it focuses on the circle of a woman giving too much or too much of herself in a relationship and a man therefore not giving enough. Men need to feel motivated to give support and if they see the woman giving a lot, they assume they don’t need support.
I don’t feel this is relevant. There have been times in the past where I’ve felt like I’ve given too much – too much romance, too much support, too much effort etc – but usually this has been resolved by communication or by ending things when they weren’t right in the first place.
SPEAKING DIFFERENT LANGUAGES
Well even though there’s a whole chapter on this, it isn’t necessary. Men and women speak a different language nearly everyday. From the tone of voice to the words they use and the way they are perceived. Unfortunately this is just a common problem that can be solved with communication.
Still relevant? Yes. Perhaps not as severe, but I definitely encounter this issue regularly.
“We mistakenly assume that if our partners love us they will react and behave in certain ways = the ways we react and behave when we love someone.“
So I kind of think this chapter is stupid but it also makes a whole lot of sense. Because men are d*cks, once they get close to a girl, they then like to pull away for some stupid reason (it is explained in the book but I can’t be bothered to go and re-read it). It makes no sense, but, unfortunately, it’s true. At least in my experience. Sometimes when you like a guy and he pulls away, you gotta play hard to get. But trust me when I say, a man who plays games like this isn’t worth it anyway.
Still relevant? Unfortunately so.
WOMEN ARE LIKE WAVES
Isn’t this just another way of saying woman get periods? Yes, sometimes we’re happy and sometimes we’re sad. It’s not always to do with PMS – going through emotions is just part of life – but I certainly get a little batsh*t crazy and over-emotional when it’s around about the time for my period. Men should be more understanding. We shouldn’t use our periods as an excuse to act out. But sometimes we just do.
Still relevant? Well, yes, we still get periods but no, I don’t think men need a guide to dealing with them.
DISCOVERING OUR DIFFERENT EMOTIONAL NEEDS
This chapter states that women need – in this order – caring, understanding, respect, devotion, validation and reassurance in a relationship, whereas a man needs: trust, acceptance, appreciation, admiration, approval and encouragement.
These are most things healthy relationships should have anyway. Any normal person would know this already: skip this chapter.
Still relevant? Yes. But not necessary.
HOW TO AVOID ARGUMENTS
I’m not even going to go into this chapter because a) people argue for a reason and arguments are necessary to a certain extent and b) without arguments you don’t get makeup sex. And quite frankly that’s not a world I want to live in.
Still relevant? Nope!
SCORING POINTS WITH THE OPPOSITE SEX
What even is this? It sounds absurd and has bullsh*t lists about how to support your other half, including things like give them four hugs a day and ‘don’t flick the remote control to different channels when she is watching TV with you’. People shouldn’t need a list to show love in a relationship. Unless you’re an idiot. In which case, this list is pretty helpful.
This chapter also states that men score women on what they do (10-20 points when he forgets to do something and she says it’s okay!) but women give generally the same score depending on whatever the man does. So basically, woman see the little things just as important as the big, whereas a man gives more points depending on what the woman does. I don’t even know.
Still relevant? No.
HOW TO COMMUNICATE DIFFICULT FEELINGS
This is just about communication really but also suggests writing a letter if you find it hard to convey your feelings verbally. Writing letters always help, to be fair.
Still relevant? No.
HOW TO ASK FOR SUPPORT AND GET IT
Aka say would you instead of could you. I get the point behind this chapter, but every relationship is give and take – sometimes you do things to make your other half happy and sometimes they do the same for you. You shouldn’t have to study what words you should use to ask them to take out the trash once in a while.
Still relevant? No.
“A woman should not be judged for needing this reassurance, just as a man should not be judged for needing to withdraw”
KEEPING THE MAGIC OF LOVE ALIVE
Finally, this chapter sums up the book overall, stating that woman should support men in their man cave and men should try not to fix women’s problems, etc.
Still relevant? Partly.
So as a whole, this book is tricky, A lot of it is bullsh*t and stuff people should know anyway – but granted, if you don’t know, it’s quite helpful. There are some things I have taken away from it that I still think are really relevant in this day and age though, most notably man caves and the home-improvement committee.
It’s always eye-opening to read a book like this and I think it definitely helps to remind you of the differences between men and woman but, if I’m honest, overall I believe that no good couple would need to refer to this book word for word. Sure, it’s helpful to understand how to support your other half in things you don’t know much about, but, generally, if your partner loves and respects you and makes you happy, who cares if he needs to disappear into a man cave every now and then..?Nonetheless, it’s been fun to sum it up in regards to modern dating. I’m lucky enough that I don’t have to play the game anymore – though most of this book is spot on for couples as well as people just wanting to get a head start on understanding the opposite sex – even when single. If you’re looking for ways to put what you’ve learnt into practice, why not try online dating? There’s sites for everyone these days, including senior dating, Belfast dating agency, Berkshire dating agency, Guernsey dating and Isle of Wight dating.
But what do you think? Do you think Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus offers information and advice that is still relevant when it comes to dating in this day and age? Let me know!
*Please note, as a contributor for We Love Dates, this is a sponsored post but all views and opinions are entirely my own.