Sheet Music: Uncovering the Secrets of Sexual Intimacy in Marriage by Dr. Kevin Leman
About the author:
Dr. Kevin Leman who is a psychologist and that background shows in his approach to this subject. He has authored 40+ books and speaks internationally about couples and families.
From the publisher – With his characteristic warmth and humor, Dr. Kevin Leman offers a practical guide to sex according to God’s plan. This frank and practical book is a perfect resource for married and engaged couples. Dr. Leman addresses a wide spectrum of people, from those with no sexual experiences to those with past sexual problems or even abuse. Using frank descriptions, this book has a warm and friendly tone that will help couples overcome awkwardness in discussing an issue important to all married couples.
What we love:
In Sheet Music, the assumption is that couples can, and should, have enjoyable and fulfilling sex lives. Dr. Leman discusses common hangups for newlyweds who are struggling to connect sexually. He also describes a few sex positions and activities in enough detail that a novice can make a game plan for their honeymoon.
What we didn’t:
Dr. Leman definitely espouses a conservative view of sex that will resonate with some readers. However, throughout the book he focuses on the wife’s responsibility to have sex regardless of her desire. For example, when he discusses low libido in women he spends several pages encouraging wives to have sex in order to take care of their husband’s needs even if they are not necessarily in the mood. He then has a short section on low desire in men but spends most of that section instructing wives in how they should seduce their husbands to improve their sex drives. It is common for healthy, consenting couples to have libidos that do not match and there is a need for communication and negotiation in those situation. However, this book felt overly focused on the idea that women should bare the brunt of the responsibility and make the majority of the concessions when it comes to a couple’s sex life.
Another problem with Sheet Music is Dr. Leman’s failure to use accurate language. He often uses euphemisms instead of proper names for anatomy. For example, he refers to the penis as “Mr. Happy” throughout the book. This is especially problematic considering that a book about sex should make it easier for couples to have honest and open conversations instead of increasing their awkwardness.
This book was written for engaged couples and newlyweds who did not have sex outside of marriage. There is one chapter on sex in older age but that felt very out of place. For the most part, the book seemed targeted towards those who had a limited understanding of sex or who
Sheet Music may be helpful for straight, Christian couples. However, I would strongly recommend pairing the book recommendation with a conversation about consent and personal responsibility. This book is not appropriate for couples who do not believe that sex is limited to heterosexual marriage or those in which a wife has a higher sex drive than her husband.
It is also important to note that while Dr. Leman discourages the use of pornography, he instructs his readers to masturbate in preparation for their wedding night and when they are separated. This may not align with some clients’ religious beliefs.
- Discusses psychological aspects of sex
- Promotes healthy sexual expression
- Encourages men & women to explore their bodies
- Fails to use accurate language around sex
- Places blame on women for problems in sexual relationship
- Promotes a limited repertoire of sexual activities