Marry Smart: Book Review

Marry Smart is a relationship advice book for young, career oriented women by Susan Patton. I think it’s worth the read. It’s quick and Ms. Patton gives sound, practical and realistic advice to young women who aspire to marriage and motherhood.

Susan Patton is an HR professional and Princeton graduate who wrote a controversial letter to the editor of the campus newspaper of her alma mater. The letter advised young women to focus on finding a husband with as much or more energy as they do in starting a career. The letter garnered a lot of attention. Enough conversation was aroused by the letter that Susan wrote a book explaining her opinions on young women, careers, marriage and motherhood. I remember seeing Susan on morning TV programs like Today and The View when the book was released in 2014.

Susan was criticized in the mainstream and by feminists but what she was saying on the talk show circuit made sense to me. The author urges young women to be honest with themselves. If they want to marry and have children pursue that goal as they would any other. Be strategic. That’s the bottom line.

Susan states that the best time in a woman’s life to find a husband is while in college. She advises young women to make finding a spouse a priority while they are young and in school because that’s when youth, social surroundings and fertility are in a woman’s favor.

The odds of finding a desirable and compatible husband are in a young woman’s favor while she is on campus. She’s around men that are educated, career oriented, young, most likely single and childless. After graduation it’s nearly impossible to simulate that kind of social setting. The author advised women to remain active in alumni activities if they don’t find a husband while a student. It’s pretty simple and common sense.

Ms. Patton says that if you know you want to marry pursue it as a goal and be mindful of your time. Pop culture leads women to believe that they will meet the perfect mate by chance. Mainstream American Christianity preaches that The Lord will bring you the perfect spouse. I don’t think these romantic notions are fruitful.

I would encourage young women to be deliberate in their dating choices, have goals and be mindful of time . I think that Marry Smart offers great advice to women regardless of their educational and career goals. Any young woman can read this book and apply it to their own life and circumstances.

My criticism of this book is that it lasts a little longer than is necessary. Susan’s advice delves into some other areas that can help a lady be a success in life but it does get to be a bit superfluous near the end. It feels like Susan’s editor had a word requirement and she needed to stretch.

Generally speaking I think relationship advice is terrible. But Ms. Patton’s advice is based on simple biology. Women have been set up to fail by ignoring biology. The author is a bit harsh but I think it comes from a good, loving, maternal place. It’s worth a read. I listened to an audio book version which lasted about seven hours.

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