Why Do I Have to Think Like a Man?
by Shanae Hall
with Rhonda Frost
Farrah Gray Publishing
Book Review by Kam Williams
“This book is dedicated to all women who are ready to ask themselves, ‘What could I have done differently to get what I wanted out of the relationship?’ or ‘How do I heal now that I’m out of it?’
If you are a reader of self-help or relationship books, you have undoubtedly heard of… Steve Harvey who gave us Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man… He has promised us that if we play our cards right, we can learn how to find a man, get a man, and keep a man by following just a few crucial steps, straight from the handbook of the original player himself.
Ladies, to keep it all the way real… it is time for some real girlfriend talk about the BS and about the state of our situation… The reason this book is relevant is because it is straight talk, no chaser, complete with dating revelations from women who look, think and act like you; who have been through what you have been through and have decided enough is enough and that we can do better.
No, we are not a man, so we don’t think like one. We are emotional, strong, loving creatures… without whom nothing comes to life.”
-- Excerpted from the Preface (pgs. x-xii)
Faithful readers are well aware of how exasperated this critic has become about the recent flood of relationship advice books aimed at the African-American demographic. The latest contribution to the burgeoning genre is this how-to tome written from the female perspective by a couple of cutie pies who have a bone or two to pick with comedian Steve Harvey’s best seller on the subject.
The authors claim to be your average females, but that’s just not the case, judging from their photos (Va-va-va-voom!) and the fact that one of them, Shanae Hall, was once married to an NFL star. Furthermore, these divorcees don’t claim to have any professional credentials, rather merely a lifetime of experience in the battle-of-the-sexes.
Consequently, their primer is peppered with personal anecdotes, such as Shanae’s account how she made a millionaire she was dating wait three years before sleeping with him, only to have the player dump her anyway. The moral of the story is implied by the Chapter’s title: “You Can’t Change Him.”
Another chapter, “Setting Standards with a Capital ‘S’,” contains Shanae’s common sense list of questions you should ask early in a relationship, like: “Are you married?” “Do you have children?” and “Are you still friends with your baby-mama?” Duh!
Excuse me for sensing a slight condescension, if not a disconnect, when a jet-setter who managed to marry a pro-athlete and who ostensibly hobnobs with the rich and famous suggests she’s dealt with the same sort of drama as the unfortunate sisters we see settling their differences daily on Jerry Springer.
That being said, Rhonda and Shanae do have some sensible ideas to share with those members of the love guru book-of-the-month club who are yet to land the man of their dreams.