Marry Him: The Case of Settling for Mr. Good Enough
by Lori Gottlieb
A Review By Tom Kennedy
This National Bestseller, Marry Him: The Case of Settling for Mr. Good Enough, is a secular examination of why some women fail to find a husband by age 40. Lori Gottlieb discovered that one group of women, of which she belongs, cannot be satisfied with Mr. Good Enough. They reject any idea of “settling” for a man who doesn’t check off all of items on the to-be-married list. “They can’t let go of their ideal man.” Unfortunately, the ideal man is impossible to find. Gottlieb’s own check list at the beginning of the book contained 61 items a man had to have in order to be considered marriage material. She states that most men have far fewer requirements and are more willing to compromise.
In her research, Gottlieb found women’s reluctance to compromise pushes away men who would make good marital partners, just not perfect ones. After years of not compromising, many women arrive at age 40 and find that men are rarely asking them out on dates. Those men who are available are usually much less perfect than the ones when she was 30. The good, but not perfect, men get married much earlier.
Some women, like Gottlieb, have an artificially inseminated child to avoid the biological clock problem. Yet the need for the idealized man does not diminish after having a child.
At the end of her book Gottlieb put herself under the care of a dating coach and wrote about what she went through. Her addiction (my term) to her ideal man resulted in a constant source of conflict with her coach. Eventually she compromised and had a few good dates. Yet at the end of the book, she was still single.
My take: this is a great book for those women who dated for years and still can’t find the right guy to marry. Perhaps your expectations are too high. As a former marriage counselor, I can tell you that compromise is necessary, no matter how close to perfection your guy might be. This book will explain some of the deprogramming you may need to go through in order to land that great, but flawed, man. Gottlieb’s book is very readable, well researched, enjoyable and timely. I recommend it highly.