Dr. Laura Saved My Marriage

A good friend of mine recommended I listen to the Dr. Laura Schlessinger Show, oh, I’d say at least 15 years ago, now.  I began listening to her and really loved her.  I really enjoy her no nonsense style and what she says makes sense.  I listened to her because I always wanted to be a SAHM, and she was and is a huge proponent of SAHMs.  She was talking about and encouraging women to do just want I wanted to do and be, so I kept listening.   What I didn’t know is that Dr. Laura is also a huge proponent for MEN.  She gets them.  She hears from a lot of them.  And she knows how to make them happy.

I enjoy Dr. Laura’s website and reading the letters she gets from listeners.  While I was happily taking in all the letters from SAHMs, I would come across a letter from a man who wasn’t getting enough sex from his wife.  Since that didn’t concern me, I would read the letters, but not really GET them, if you know what I mean.  Same with her radio program.  I heard husbands talking about their wives refusing them, but I wasn’t really listening.   Along came The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands.  I thought, you know, I should read that book.  Dr. Laura seems to know a lot about being a good wife.  So I bought the book.  I read it.  I liked it.  I understood it.  But it didn’t really sink in.  I read it again.  Still good.  Still didn’t sink in.  I read it for the third time and became aware that I ought to actually be following her advice, not just reading about her advice!   It was around that time that all the letters to Dr. Laura I’d read, the calls to Dr. Laura I’d heard and the advice in her book came together and I GOT IT!!!

  • Don’t deny yourself a good orgasm.
  • But do I have to even if…?  Even if.
  • But my body’s not perfect!  Your husband doesn’t want you to have a perfect body. He just wants your naked body pressed against him.  
  • Stop saying no and start saying yes.
  • Be your husband’s girlfriend or someone else will.
  • Don’t put him off until he decides he’s had enough, because when the kids are all up and out, so will he be.
  • If he’s not horny, make him a sandwich (Conan’s favorite!).
  • You have the power in the relationship to make your husband worship the ground you walk on and swim through shark infested waters to bring you a lemonade.
  • Your husband wants and needs your love, admiration and respect.  He also needs sex with you.
  • YOU start being more sexual and then he’ll be more loving, giving, devoted, etc.  You CANNOT wait for him to be more (fill in the blank) and then be more sexual.  It’s up to you, the wife.

And then she said something profound on her program one day.  I clearly remember exactly where I was in my car when I heard her say it.  She said, and I’m paraphrasing here, “If you are refusing and withholding sex you are breaking your marriage vows just as surely as if you were committing adultery.”  It stopped me cold.  (Not literally, I was driving!) That struck me to the core.

And it was then and there that I really, truly changed.   Everything was not perfect overnight, and things had been steadily improving, but this was the catalyst that put that improvement into mach speed.

Many, many things I say here on this blog I can attribute to Dr. Laura in some way.  I owe her a great deal.  Dr. Laura literally saved my marriage.
p.s.  Conan likes her because she has a Harley and a tattoo.  HA!

28 thoughts on “Dr. Laura Saved My Marriage

  1. I like Dr. Laura too! I read The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands in one sitting. I also ordered a book by an LDS author titled And They Were Not Ashamed and read it as well.

    Do you have any suggestions for motivating my wife to read either or both of those? I told her I read them, and thoght they might help us. She started the one by the LDS author, but stopped after 80 pages. She said the book didn’t apply to her and was not interested in anything written therein. She dislikes Dr. Laura and says she is “mean” and “too hard” on her callers, so she has no interest in her book.

    • I want to read the book And They Were Not Ashamed. I’ve heard so much about it, been to Laura Brotherson’s site, link it and her blog here, etc. I can’t get it from my library, though, and so need to buy it. But since I would only be reading it for research, I am having a hard time using my book allowance on it!!

      A lot of people think Dr. Laura is “mean” because she doesn’t beat around the bush or pull any punches. That’s because she doesn’t have time to be all kissy kissy and careful with peoples feelings. But her books are a completely different approach. They are kind and persuasive with no harsh manner.

      Anyway, I’m sorry that I really don’t have a lot of suggestions for you. The only thing I can think of is to possibly get The Proper Care and Feeding of Marriage, and see if she might read that? Or how about the book The Ten Stupid Things Couples Do to Mess Up Their Lives. They are couples focused instead of telling the wife what she needs to do so she might be less likely to think you’re trying to “fix” her. Then she might find that she likes Dr. Laura’s books and ease into The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands.

      Good luck, Foo!

      p.s. I can’t get Conan to read anything I would like him to read, either! Not even Dr. Laura. How’s that for irony?

        • Yes. She has been since our first pregnancy. It’s been a difficult road, often involving two jobs for me, but we both think it has been well worth it.

          • She might like the book “In Praise of Stay At Home Moms” by Dr. Laura. I’m thinking that if she can appreciate Dr. Laura for that, the way I did, then maybe she’d be more apt to listen about the marriage and husband stuff, too, like me.
            And if you both think it’s been well worth it, then you could give the book to her as a gift as thanks for being a great mom or something.

  2. I read Proper Care and Feeding several years ago, and I agree that Dr. Laura really GETS men. I was amazed that any woman could understand guys so thoroughly. I was so impressed with the book that I gave a copy to my youngest daughter before she got married. I carefully did NOT suggest that my wife should read it because I knew that she would take that as a criticism of herself. So I just announced that I was going to give it to our daughter as an engagement gift, and after a few days my wife did pick it up and read it, just out of curiosity.

    But when I asked her what she thought of it she said that while Dr. Laura makes a few good points, she thought that Dr. Laura was just an apologist for men who don’t want to improve themselves. And by “improve themselves” she means that men should work hard to feel and behave more like women do. Oh well, I tried…

    • Yes Norm! That is one of the worries that floats around in the back of my head. I hope it doesn’t come across as creepy, but I worry that my daughters will be much like my wife. In essence I’ll be inflicting the same misery on some poor unsuspecting sap who falls for my beautiful daughter.

  3. I’m with Norm. My wife received the book from her mother-in-law (that’s a bombshell), read it, and then said something along the line of “Well, I havn’t done any of that stuff, and you’re still here. All that book does is makes me feel guilty.” The level of cluelessness is so astonishing that I didn’t even know how to respond. So I didn’t. I hope those of you in sex-filled marriages know how lucky you are.

    • Why didn’t you respond? And why are you still there? I don’t ask this critically, I am really wondering why men don’t speak up and why they stay where someone disrespects them so much. My husband was the same way. Don’t get me wrong, I am glad he hung in and even happier that I have a chance to make up for what I did. My husband just says he accepted his lot in life and tried to make the best of it. I wonder sometimes what would have happened if he had not accepted his lot in life and spoke up for his needs, wants, and desires. I guess we will never know. But honestly guys, why do you put up with it????

      • I think the answer to the question “why do you stay” is multi-layered and very complicated. First of all, most of these guys really do love their wives. They also take their vows seriously. I think the biggest reason, though, is that most of them have children. Men get the short end of the stick in almost all divorce situations. They become part-time fathers with limited access to their own children, and very limited input in all decisions regarding their children. These guys don’t want to go through the pain of seeing their children 4-6 days a month, which is what every other weekend visitation with a couple of weekdays thrown in works out to. And that’s if they’re lucky enough that their ex-wife doesn’t move across the country and take the children with her. Then there’s child support. When my husband divorced his first wife his child support payments were a HUGE amount of his pay. He told the judge he didn’t know how he’d be able to live after paying his child support. The judge told him to get a second job. Since he already worked 50-60 hours a week that wasn’t a viable option and so he had to live in a cheap apartment with two to three roommates. Until we got married, and then my income took care of his child support. Then his ex-wife played the “Poor me, I’m a poor, single mom, doing it all by myself, boo hoo”, for years. Never mind that Conan was an active, VERY present father who not only faithfully paid his child support but also paid for all doctor bills, sports camps, summer camps, and any and all extra-curricular activities and much, much more.

        Sorry, this is turning into a rant about ex-wives and broken/blended families. But you can see how the thought of those things might convince just about any man to live in a sexless marriage, at least until the kids are up and out!

        I’m sure guys in the situation can answer the question much better than I, but that’s my 2 cents, adjusted for inflation. 🙂

        • Zookie said: “But you can see how the thought of those things might convince just about any man to live in a sexless marriage, at least until the kids are up and out!”

          This was my situation too. But once the kids were up and out for good, I found myself almost 60 and really couldn’t see myself finding a woman my age who would want to be sexual, or a younger, more sexual woman who would want to be with an old guy. So I’m still here.

  4. My wife read “The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands” and saw some things she should improve on, and did. Dr. Laura totally gets men and every one of her recommendations should be heeded.

    However, real change for my wife on the withholding issue came after we had our 448th talk about the subject about a year ago. This time, she really opened to the idea that my needs were not being met. After that, things started to change. Then we visited Laura Brotherson’s website, and some things really hit home. Things changed even more. After that, we started reading Brotherson’s book together, and the change was complete.

    It is almost like my wife cannot get enough sex now. On Sunday, we were home in the afternoon and she whispered in my ear that every time she was near me, she found herself getting aroused. The previous two days, we had experienced a lot of great sex, so she was kind of basking in the afterglow. My wife has completely changed in the course of a year, and our marriage has totally improved along with her transformation.

    Zookie, I highly recommend reading Brotherson’s book to everyone. However, from your writings, I know that you are already practicing what Brotherson preaches, so her book will be of limited use to you. If you do buy it, look on ebay or Amazon. I bought it online and with shipping, it was under $15.

  5. So that’s it! The great turning point. Very interesting. Thanks for sharing.

    I think Dr. Laura gets it. Her lack of listening and her interrupting people on the radio bugged me the one or two times I listened to it. But, I do like that she doesn’t put up with excuses and tells it like it is. I love this gem from her most recent post on Raising Boys Into Men: http://drlaura.com/b/Raising-Boys-Into-Men/490633094405644667.html

    “In my opinion, the basic problem we have in marriages today is a feminine disdain for masculinity and a refusal of males to rise to the occasion and act like strong men, not “wussies” afraid of their women. ”

    Right On.

    Zookie–you should write your own book. It would be great to have more than one on this topic by a woman. Brotherson won’t give you anything you don’t already know, and not a lot beyond her blog. But, it’s pretty helpful–mostly because it’s written respectfully by a woman.

    For Norm, Gavin, Foo, Felix–
    Felix’ wife gave some rarely spoken, but probably very often felt wisdom:

    “Well, I haven’t done any of that stuff, and you’re still here. All that book does is makes me feel guilty.”

    Powerful. Talk isn’t convincing unless its’ followed by action.

    I’ve just written a post about Dr. Laura and my own “Dr. Strong Man” thoughts for men: Dr. Laura and Dr. Strong Man

    • You’re welcome!

      I really liked Dr. Laura’s latest blog post, too.

      Thanks for the vote of confidence, but I don’t see a book in my future! I’m not an author! Plus, I’m not a professional or expert on anything.

  6. I’m one of those fortunate (few?) husbands who’s wife loves to have sex, but it still baffles me that my wife doesn’t get how “hot” she is to me. I’m not sure if this makes sense, but the longer we’re together, the more my definition of “hot” has changed to match her body. Whatever she is … that’s what I want … and there’s no one else out there that can come close.

    Thanks for the blog Zookie!

  7. This is a comment from another blog that was spurred in a small part by my blog here, and also mentioned Dr. Laura.

    “Dr. Laura is about as qualified to give counseling advice as you are…check into her credentials.

    If you’re willing to follow her advice on that background, be my guest. I mean, selling lots of books must mean something (maybe that she’s saying what her audience wants to hear?). But I’m not willing to stake the wellbeing of my marriage on the advice of someone whose training is in physiology any more than I’m willing to stake it on the advice of a random LDS guy on the internet.”

    Which is just a bit offensive to me, since I just got done basically pouring out my heart about how Dr. Laura’s advice was instrumental in saving my marriage.
    The funny thing is, she does NOT say what people WANT to hear. She says what they NEED to hear.

    Anyway, I know there are lots and lots of Dr. Laura haters out there. I simply don’t care. She has helped me and countless others with their lives.

    • Dr. Laura’s original Ph.D. may have been in physiology, but she received her post-doctoral certification in Marriage, Family, and Child Counseling from the University of Southern California. She was in private practice as a clinical psychologist for 12 years. She’s also been on the faculty of the Graduate Psychology Department at Pepperdine University. I think she’s great!

      • I’ve been on graduate faculties in departments where I have no training. It can happen.

        I think the big problem for most of the “Dr. Laura haters” is that she misrepresents herself….the “Dr” part of her title doesn’t have anything to do with the advice she gives, but she uses it to lend credence to what she says. For people who don’t bother to check, that can mean being misled into thinking she’s more accredited than she is. Which is an ethical dilemma.

        Whether you agree with her or not is absolutely a separate issue. Just thought I’d point that out.

  8. It doesn’t matter who wrote the book. If your husband is reading it and saying “yes, I agree” to what he is reading, I would think a wife would want to pay attention. On the other hand, if he is saying “This is really stupid stuff and doesn’t apply to me at all”, then you should throw the book out.

    As far as Dr. Laura is concerned, I use to listen to her program regularly while driving to work. While I didn’t agree with everything or the harsh way she sometimes delivered her advice, she did seem to speak a lot of common sense. However, the last time I listened to her, she gave what I thought was sickening advice to an older woman (late 40’s) who had been trying for years to get pregnant with no luck, and had given up, but now found herself pregnant, but was concerned because her and her husband were now middle aged. She asked Dr, Laura if it was too late and if they were too old to raise the baby now. Dr. Laura told her they WERE too old to raise a baby now, that since the had no other children, if something happened to them the child would have no-one to take care of it. And since they were older the chances of something happening to them was greater. She told the woman under no circumstances should they raise the baby, but instead should give it up for adoption to a younger couple. I was so sickened by this advice and prayed for days that the woman would NOT listen to Dr. Laura. I stopped listening to her show after that!

    I have read some of her books since then, and agree with a lot that is in them. But like I kind of said above, if the advice is good for your life, then pay attention. If it’s not – feel free to trash it!!!

    • CM,
      Yep, take what you can and leave the rest. Nobody will have the exact same opinions on every single topic.
      She doesn’t know everything and her word is not the word of God, of course, but her marriage advice is spot on.

  9. I have listened to her show on XM radio a bit. I do think she can be hard at times. Sometimes I agree with her and it is needed to slap someone out of repeating bad behavior. Sometimes I think she is being to hard on people with only limited information. Some of the times I think she might be justified, but before doing so she should ask a few more questions.

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