|Real Marriage: The Truth About Sex, Friendship, and Life Together|
First edition hardcover
|Publication date||January 3, 2012|
|Media type||Print (Hardback & e-book)|
|Pages||272 pp (first edition, hardback)|
|ISBN||ISBN 140020383X (first edition, hardback)|
Real Marriage: The Truth About Sex, Friendship, and Life Together is a 2012 marriage book written by Christian author Mark Driscoll and his wife, Grace, and published by Thomas Nelson. The book spent one week on the New York Times Best Seller list for advice books.
The book is divided into three parts: Marriage, Sex, and The Last Day. In part one, the Driscolls share their personal stories, including their individual upbringings, their years as a dating couple, and conflict in their marriage. In part two, the authors deal with three different views of sex—sex as god, sex as gross, and sex as gift. In part three, the authors lay out how to "reverse engineer" one's marriage, by examining how to "finish well" on its last day.
Critical reception for the book has been mixed, with Publishers Weekly praising the book's "boldly refreshing approach". Relevant wrote that "Though it's certainly not all bad, the helpful and the harmful in Real Marriage are too thoroughly intertwined to be helpful."
The book has faced criticism due to the Driscolls' detailed and frank discussion of sex in Real Marriage. The Driscolls have stated that they did not write the book for people looking to read the book for "voyeuristic" intents, but because they viewed sex as an important part of marriage and that the majority of marriage help books were written for people who had not "experienced sexual assault or been abused or exposed to pornography or sexual sins". The book has also been criticized for content such as chapters entitled "The Respectful Wife", with critics stating that the book was "an astoundingly unbelievable work of disrespect for women" and that "the book focuses so much on sex that it can create the impression that it's the most important element of marriage".
Mark Driscoll has replied to these criticisms, stating that he was aware that the book's content would "catch flak" and that "accommodating everyone would be impossible".
- NYT Bestseller list NY Times
- Nonfiction Review: Real Marriage Publishers Weekly
- REVIEW: Real Marriage Relevant Magazine
- Pastor’s detailed book on sex divides reviewers, sparks controversy CNN
- Mark and Grace Driscoll: Telling the Truth about Marriage Publishers Weekly
- Mark Driscoll’s Sex Manual ‘Real Marriage’ Scandalizes Evangelicals The Daily Beast
- Mark Driscoll Talks 'Real Marriage' With CNN's Piers Morgan Christian Post
- Mark Driscoll Responds to Criticism of Sex Talk in 'Real Marriage' Christian Post