This woman believes the secret to a happy marriage is doing anything to keep your husband happy, even if it includes being verbally abused, forced to have sex and hiding her bodily functions so as not to offend your man.
Melissa Gorga stars in the reality show The Real Housewives of New Jersey and has just released a book called Love Italian Style: The Secrets of My Hot and Happy Marriage. Another subtitle might be: How To Set the Women's Movement Back 100 Years.
The advice in this how-to guide to romance, based on her relationship with husband Joe Gorga, is meant to be "old school with modern all in one," she told the hosts of American talk show Fox & Friends. "When the man of the house is happy, in return, you are happy."
Fair enough. We won't argue with husbands and wives piling on the love and compliments with equal zeal. But Gorga's tips for keeping her man happy are nothing less than shocking. And it doesn't help matters that, while the book is predominantly written by Melissa, she often allows the chauvinistic Joe to weigh in.
"The amount of sexism, gender essentialism, and caveman logic within its pages is so appalling that it's difficult to believe that her book is anything but a cry for help," writes Jezebel. "It might be the most sexist, misogynistic, barbaric book on love and relationships ever written," criticized CafeMom.com. "Seriously. Not kidding."
What exactly have reviewers found so offensive? Let's start with the Joe-penned excerpt that has actually led to accusations that the Gorgas are advocating marital rape: "Men, I know you think your woman isn't the type who wants to be taken," he writes. "But trust me, she is. Every girl wants to get her hair pulled once in a while. If your wife says, 'No,' turn her around, and rip her clothes off. She wants to be dominated. … Women don't realize how easy men are. Just give us what we want."
That's not the only frightening, violent-tinged description of their marriage. "[Joe's] style was to make corrections and to teach me from the beginning days of our marriage exactly how he envisioned our life together," Melissa writes. "Joe always says, 'You got to teach someone to walk straight on the knife. If you slip, you're going to get cut. Even if something didn't bother him that badly, he'd bring it up. He wanted to make sure that I knew, for example, if I ran out to CVS and he came home from work to an empty house, he didn't like it. He'd call me and say, 'I don't care if you're out all day long. But I don't want to come home to an empty house.'"
Clearly, Melissa's married life so far has been a continual effort to attain a ridiculously high standard -- including the idea that women should hide normal human functions. "Girls don't poop," she writes. "Me, never have. Never will. It just doesn't happen. Or, that's what Joe thinks! We've been married for nine years, and he has never once seen or smelled my business. How have I pulled this off? I don't do it when he's around or awake. In an emergency, I have my ways of pooping so he won't hear, smell, or see. It's a challenge."
In other chapters, Melissa appears to be justifying Joe's lopsided marital logic. "If you notice, Joe never wears a wedding band," she writes. "Joe has really chubby fingers (he will tell you so, too), and he thinks that a ring is the most uncomfortable thing ever. It used to bother me, but now I just tell myself that a wedding band is more of a chick magnet, kind of like a guy walking a cute dog or pushing a stroller." Yep, keep on "just telling yourself" that.
Melissa's hot and spicy marriage also involves lots of verbal abuse from Joe, which she "can take" because "that's what a spouse is for."
Really? Sorry, but we beg to differ.