BARRY AND ALICE: Portrait of a Bisexual Marriage by Barry & Alice Matusow Kohn

BARRY AND ALICE: Portrait of a Bisexual Marriage

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Absolutely endless agonizing about identity, about honesty, and about bisexuality as (for this couple) the key to both. He's an ex-lawyer who struggled for years with the guilty secret that he was cheating on his wife with other men; she's a therapist who was angered and horrified by his eventual disclosure, and attempted to change him through psychoanalysis. Eventually he decided he didn't want to change; and in the what-the-hell spirit of the times, she turned from pained observer to participant in her own bisexual escapades. The problem is that each insists, in alternating chapters, on the specialness of the other and of the relationship; but neither succeeds in making clear what keeps them together, beyond the fact that they are each other's favorite sex partners, and both are most enthusiastic when describing their various conquests. She: ""In the end, we put a vibrator between us and together we reached orgasm."" Alice and Barry evidently mean well in disclosing their private endurance marathon to coax others out of the closet (they think 13 years of marriage should prove something), but there is a shallowness in any self-definition that focuses primarily on one's sexual preferences; and the nearly total absence of information about their seven-year-old son is one indication of just how completely self-absorbed the Kohns really are.

Pub Date: Feb. 11th, 1979
Publisher: Prentice-Hall