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Book Jacket

208 pages
Aug 2006
Bethany House Publishers

Married But Not Engaged

by Paul & Sandra Coughlin

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After Paul Coughlin's book No More Christian Nice Guy became a strong-selling title, it was obvious a sequel would soon be forthcoming. It is, but this is written by Paul and his wife Sandy, called Married But Not Engaged. Much of what is found here is a summary of the previous book, in that it says that the CNG (Christian Nice Guy) gets bullied at work, fails to serve as a strong role model for his kids, never knows how to say no to work at church, and avoids conflict and arguments at all costs.

What makes this new book a step beyond, is that it points out that these wimpy CNGs are a pain to live with. Wives can never get a straight answer from them about budgets, sex, future plans, or personal needs, because these guys are radical introverts. They always think of Jesus as meek, mild, long suffering, and gracious, so they emulate those qualities only. (But, hey, wasn't he the fellow who upended the tables of the moneychangers...talked bluntly to the divorced woman at the well...did a face-off with Satan in the desert...and gutted out the crucifixion?) Often, the book explains, their behavior as adult men was shaped when they were incorrectly disciplined as a child, deserted by a parent, or were misinformed about the Bible's actual teachings.

Bringing these men out of their shells so that they will talk about their problems is not easy. However, Sandy suggests rubbing his shoulders and just saying, “Rough day at work?" and letting him take it from there. The Coughlins also provide a list of discussion starters that will get to core issues in a marriage without attacking the other spouse.

Profiles are provided of women who actually drive CNGs deeper into themselves rather than draw them out. Ultimately, these men sometimes have extramarital affairs, take up drinking, or do other harmful things as ways of coping. Matters only get worse, often ending in divorce.

This book is only 144 pages, and a third of it is review of the previous book by Paul Coughlin or else direct quotes from other writers. However, since there is not much else on the market that addresses ways of coping with withdrawn, non-assertive, moody Christian men, this book provides a starting point. – Dr. Dennis E. Hensley, Christian Book

Book Jacket:

Reconnect With Your Emotionally Checked-Out Husband

Frustrated over your stalled marriage? Tired of enduring a less-than-satisfying relationship with your husband? Feeling anger or guilt about wanting more from your passive "nice guy"?

Paul and Sandy Coughlin understand the life you're leading, because once Paul was a Christian Nice Guy husband and Sandy was his frustrated wife. Their freeing message will help you understand the inner life of your emotionally detached husband as well as what you can do—and shouldn’t do--to create a more satisfying relationship. They'll help you understand the forces that make men passive, how to handle issues of anger, respect, and resentment, and learn practical ways to nurture intimacy.

Married…But Not Engaged informs, instructs, encourages, and inspires as it shows how you and your husband can draw closer together.