30 Year Old Virgin! Freedomain Call In - Transcript

Chapters

0:00 - Intimacy Struggles
2:30 - Overcoming Challenges
6:24 - Exploring Parallels
11:20 - Career Guidance Analogy
17:25 - Dating Strategy Evaluation
22:10 - The Question of Self-Esteem
42:04 - Building Confidence and Self-Perception
59:58 - Money Matters and Parental Guidance
1:04:43 - Lessons from Childhood: Stealing and Parenting
1:08:19 - Stealing as an Act of Despair
1:09:01 - The Evolution Past Theft
1:10:42 - Childhood Religious Views
1:12:21 - Impact of Parental Moral Judgments
1:23:11 - Hypocrisy and Drug Addiction
1:26:30 - Anger Towards Irresponsible Parenting
1:30:21 - Seeking Apologies from Parents
1:36:15 - The Impact of Parental Hypocrisy
1:40:59 - Consequences of Participating in Falsehoods
1:41:38 - Confronting the Unreality
1:43:54 - Addressing Childhood Sin Talk
1:52:18 - Confronting Past Drug Addiction
1:57:12 - Standing up to Bullying Parents
1:59:53 - The Price of Avoiding Truth
2:05:54 - Recognizing Parental Bullying
2:11:55 - Pride in Honesty
2:16:16 - The Cost of Procrastination

Long Summary

In this episode, I talk to a caller about their challenges in relationships and intimacy, stemming from their upbringing in an evangelical Christian household where such topics were considered off-limits. The caller shares their struggle with seeking therapy in college to address dating anxiety and discusses their limited success despite having desirable traits. We delve into the importance of actively pursuing meaningful connections and developing a clear dating strategy based on shared interests.

As we continue the conversation, I emphasize the significance of self-confidence and articulating one's own value in attracting a compatible partner. Self-reflection and self-assurance are highlighted as essential components for building successful relationships. We explore the caller's lack of dating experience and potential underlying issues rooted in childhood experiences, particularly focusing on past disciplinary interactions with parents and behaviors like lying and avoidance.

Moving forward, we navigate how parenting styles can influence a child's behavior, examining the impact of fear-based tactics and teachings on morality and self-worth. We discuss the caller's upbringing, which involved conflicting messages from parents and revelation of a father's drug addiction, highlighting the harmful effects of parental hypocrisy and lack of accountability on forming connections and emotional well-being.

As the episode progresses, we delve deeper into the caller's family dynamics, addressing the importance of confronting parents about past issues and seeking clarity while prioritizing one's well-being. Tough questions about upbringing are encouraged to foster honesty, deeper connection, and self-respect. The caller is advised not to avoid challenging conversations, as procrastination can hinder personal growth and meaningful relationships. Ultimately, the importance of taking action, facing family truths, and embracing honesty for future relationships is underscored throughout our discussion.

Transcript

[0:00] Intimacy Struggles

[0:00] Hey, Stefan. I've been stuck in about the same place with respect to relationships and intimacy for as long as I can remember. To give you some background, I grew up in an evangelical Christian household where relationships, sex, and intimacy were an awkward subject for both of my parents. I didn't receive any meaningful guidance for them on how to attract slash relate to women, and I ended up believing that the one for me would just sort of fall into my lap organically someday. day. Long story short, I developed a crippling anxiety around talking to women and didn't go on a single date until I sought out therapy in college at age 19.

[0:35] This led to a handful of dates at age 19 to 20 and one makeout session, which is to this day the only intimacy I've experienced with a woman. I moved away from my hometown around that time and failed to carry forward on the momentum I gained in therapy, only going on one date in the past eight years. I went to different therapists off and on during my 20s and finally found one that I clicked with two years ago, which has helped me overcome a lot of my anxiety around carrying on conversations with women. When an opportunity arises, I don't find it too difficult to carry on a conversation and get a phone number, but it hasn't led to any more dates so far. On the surface, I have a lot of the traits that wouldn't find attractive. I'm tall and well-built, handsome enough, self-employed in a lucrative career that I love, above average intelligence, and have plenty of hobbies. To me, the fact that I haven't had any success in finding a relationship or even going on dates means that I don't have sufficient opportunities and or that there's something below the surface level that would repel women, even if I had plenty of opportunities. I'm just a bit lost on how to proceed from here, especially over the last couple of years. I've started to feel like I'm on a hamster wheel working just so I can keep working. It's embarrassing to be almost a 30-year-old virgin with essentially no dating history, and I know that won't get worse as time goes on. Just writing that last sentence makes me feel a bit panicked. Yeah, that's about it.

[1:53] Yeah, it's not a bad time to panic. I can understand that, and I can sympathize with that, and I'm sure we can do some useful stuff. So do you want to start with childhood? How long have you been listening to what I do?

[2:09] Oh, I would say for the last four-ish years, give or take.

[2:15] Okay, so I'm sure we can move at a fairly fast clip. So do you want to talk about childhood? Do you want to talk about the present or strategies to overcome or what's your pleasure?

[2:30] Overcoming Challenges

[2:30] Strategies to overcome, I think, I don't want to be too presumptuous, but I've talked a lot about childhood with therapists. And I don't want to say there's like that, that couldn't be fruitful because I think it could be, but maybe strategies is a better place to start.

[2:50] Okay, and how black do you want me to be?

[2:55] Late on.

[2:56] Okay. Okay. So, to me, I don't mean to use the term incel as a slur, but it's technically true that you're involuntarily celibate. Is that right?

[3:11] Yes.

[3:12] Okay. Okay, so the incel thing in general comes from a combination of rage and selfishness. So what else sort of say about that? And, you know, if it doesn't fit your experience, of course, we can utterly toss it to one side. And I don't mean to make it about me, but I think since you know my work, now, if you sort of know the stuff that I'm capable of, Rav, what would be my motives for withholding my skills from the world? Why would I withhold my skills from the world? What would be my incentive to do that?

[3:52] What would be your incentive to withhold your skills from the world?

[3:56] Yeah, I'm pretty good at this kind of stuff. I never have to say, I'm never doing any philosophy. I'm not talking to people about problems. I'm withholding my skills from the world. what would be my motive for doing that um.

[4:11] Well i guess like if you thought it was going to lead to some kind of evil in the world.

[4:18] Well no but i wouldn't be a very good philosopher if i wouldn't be a good philosopher if what i did would lead to evil in the world i also wouldn't be a good philosopher sure if i thought that doing good would lead to evil in the world because then i would be making a mistake that'd be like saying i'm a good doctor and all of my patients die it's It's like, no, no, that's right, so what else?

[4:41] Sorry, maybe I missed the point of the question.

[4:44] Why, if I have all these skills and abilities, what would be my incentive to...

[4:50] Selfishness, right?

[4:51] Well, I think it would be sort of selfish, and that selfishness would be like, you know, damn the world, I'm not going to do anything in the world, I'm not going to help the world, the world was too mean to me, I'm not going to be nice back, you know. There'd be a whole bunch of stuff going on in my head that would end up with me withholding.

[5:11] The skills and abilities that i have to help the world i would end up withholding it from the world because i would be angry at the world i mean more than angry it would be kind of to sort of murder my own abilities would be such an act of sabotage that it would only come out of a kind of rage and also be kind of selfish. Like if I have the ability to help people and I just won't do it, there would be a certain amount of selfishness. Like I prefer my rage and resentment over actually helping the world, if that makes any sense. And there would also be a kind of hypocrisy, right? So if I would be angry at the world and say, well, the world didn't help me when I was a kid, so damn it, I'm not going to help the world either. Well, that would be hypocritical because I'd be angry that the world didn't help me, and in return, I wouldn't help the world. So then I could completely understand why. Maybe people didn't help me for the same reason that I'm not helping the world. They're angry, frustrated, they're selfish. And so if I'm not helping people, I can't complain about people not helping me, if that makes sense?

[6:23] Yeah, okay.

[6:24] Exploring Parallels

[6:24] Okay, so obviously this is not about me. So what are the parallels here? Okay.

[6:34] Um, sorry, sorry. I think that just went over my head.

[6:43] No problem.

[6:43] Somehow. No problem. Okay.

[6:45] Do you have good things to offer a woman and your children?

[6:56] Yeah, I think so.

[6:59] You think so? I mean, you've had 12 years as an adult and 30 years on the planet. Do you have good things to offer a wife and children?

[7:19] Yeah, sure.

[7:21] Okay, so let's explore the doubt here. I mean, I understand the doubt is that nobody's taking you up on your quote offer so to speak but i don't think you've made many offers right i mean i was really struck when sorry i was really struck when you said like i talk to women but it doesn't translate into dates well yeah talking to women doesn't translate into dates but yeah i mean you know talking to women doesn't translate into dates i i talk to the woman at the grocery store when i get get my groceries, and we exchange some pleasantries. But that doesn't lead to dates, because why? Because I haven't asked her out.

[8:04] Right.

[8:05] Because I'm happily married, right? So I'm not sure what you mean. Like, how do things translate to dates? Don't you just have to ask someone out?

[8:14] Yeah. Yeah. Well, yeah.

[8:17] Okay. So how many...

[8:18] I have done that.

[8:19] Yeah. So, I mean, how many women have you asked out?

[8:25] Like recently or in my entire life?

[8:30] I really... Let's not get overly complicated here. I don't mind which answer it is or both. Okay.

[8:38] I mean, recently, recently, like one or two, like in the last three to four months, I would say.

[8:47] Okay. And what about over the course of your life?

[8:55] Maybe 10 or 15, something like that. Okay.

[8:58] And you've had one taker, right? Which was the necking session in your teens. Is that right?

[9:05] No, no. know i've had i've had probably four or five dates maybe.

[9:10] Okay and what's happened with those dates and if there are any general patterns um.

[9:17] They just just haven't haven't gone anywhere um.

[9:21] No no no don't don't don't be passive on me hang on okay things don't translate and things don't go somewhere right go you make a decision right do you like the person do you want to continue seeing them? Do you express enthusiasm? What do you mean by doesn't go anywhere?

[9:39] Well, I guess we just weren't that interested in one another.

[9:43] Well, can you speak for yourself? Did you not find the woman interesting?

[9:50] Yeah, no. I didn't on basically all of the dates that I've been on. I think the feeling was mutual.

[10:01] Okay so you haven't found any women interesting and women haven't found you interesting is that right yes okay so then you're choosing women who aren't interesting so on what basis are you choosing them if not that they're interesting i.

[10:24] Guess i guess proximity i mean just just women men that I've run into in my day-to-day life.

[10:32] So you don't have any standards by which you choose women. It's just like, you're around, you're willing to go out with me, so we'll have a date. And you don't filter for interests or intelligence or conversation skills or virtues or anything like that, right?

[10:51] Yeah, I guess I haven't. Yeah, it sounds bad to say that, but...

[10:57] No, no, I mean, forget about how it sounds. I mean, we're just trying to get to the facts.

[11:01] Right? Right.

[11:04] All right. So if I were to say to you, like, let's say that you are a career guidance guy, right? Like, you're really good at helping people with careers. And I say, hey, man, I'm really not happy with my career. And let me sort of tell you about it.

[11:20] Career Guidance Analogy

[11:20] So I I've applied for a couple of jobs over the last 12 years I just basically if I'm wandering around and I see a help wanted sign I'll just go in, and I'll just apply for the job and you know sometimes it's a dishwasher you know maybe sometimes I did a bit of landscaping and you know wherever the help wanted signs are I'll just go and apply and I'll sort of randomly take the jobs and I haven't found any job, That's satisfying, and over the last 12 years, I suppose I've applied for, I don't know, like maybe 10 or 12 random jobs, and I've gotten a couple of jobs, but they're just not particularly satisfying, and I don't know what the problem is. What would you say as a career guy?

[12:10] I would say, choose something you like to do that fulfills you and pursue that aggressively.

[12:19] Well.

[12:20] Something like that.

[12:21] You would say that, but it wouldn't help because that's so obvious, right? So what you'd say is, why on earth do you think that's a viable strategy for getting a satisfying career? Like, that would be the first question, not obvious things like choose, because that's, you know, especially if it turned out. But you've been listening to a career counselor guy for like four years, to take an analogy, right? You'd say, well, how is it that you could possibly think that could work? Like just walking around randomly, going in, getting a couple of jobs, finding out you don't like the job, you know, and then not getting a job for a year or maybe, and then going in for another help, wanted some random job. And it's a hardware store. It turns out I don't really like hardware stores. course like and and i've been doing this for 12 years and i've almost i've never really had a job it would be the question of why have you been doing this for 12 years, right thinking that that this could get you a job that's meaningful and satisfying.

[13:26] Yeah yeah so that's my question you know you're an intelligent guy and and the question is this is a terrible strategy right i mean to be perfectly frank it's it's it's good news it's good because if you've been pursuing a great strategy and you're single at 30 or a virgin at 30 but you've been produced that would be terrible news right right so the question is, why have you been doing something that a an eight-year-old, would tell you wouldn't work like if you're if you're if you say to an eight-year-old kid you just give them you know a box of random legos and they say and you say i want you to make me a perfect star wars millennium falcon or something they'd say what would they say.

[14:17] Where are the instructions?

[14:19] Well, the pieces are all different colors. I don't know what matches. Where are the instructions? Like, that's not a plan. Right. Just randomly grab things out of the box and try and make a Millennium Falcon. That's not a plan, right? And so for you, just like randomly asking girls out that you don't filter for any virtues or values, that's not a plan, right? And you're a smart guy, so the question is, why does a smart guy not have a plan?

[14:48] Uh it's a good question i.

[14:50] Mean does it sort of make sense the way that i'm approaching it.

[14:53] No i'm not trying to make you feel bad i'm actually trying to i'm.

[14:55] Actually trying to make you feel better it's fantastic that this.

[14:58] That you.

[14:58] Have no plan because if you had a plan and you were.

[15:00] Executing perfectly.

[15:01] And you were still single that would be a huge problem.

[15:04] Yeah yeah i understand that that's that's that is good news um but why why do i not have a plan um i i don't know i mean i, I've known for a while that I should probably find some common interest group, social groups to meet people in, but I just haven't done it.

[15:34] Oh, okay. And when did it first occur to you that you might want to find some groups where you share interests with the women?

[15:43] I mean, I've known that for a while. I mean, a few years. And I do have interests, but most of them just don't tend to attract women.

[15:56] Okay, so you're saying a couple of years ago, you thought maybe you should find women with similar interests?

[16:06] Yeah, I mean, yeah, I've known that for a long time. I just haven't really done anything about it, I guess.

[16:14] Sorry, you said a couple of years, and now you're saying a long time. Is it not a couple of years i.

[16:20] Mean somewhere between two and four years i guess i okay.

[16:24] So is it fair to say that you first became interested in dating around sort of 14 or 15 years of age.

[16:30] Sure okay so.

[16:32] For well over a decade it didn't occur to you that you might want to find women who shared some of your interests well.

[16:42] No that's not no that's not what I was that's not what I was trying to say I mean I I guess I guess growing up I always had interests that that attracted some some amount of women so it wasn't it wasn't really an issue but in an adult age I mean, It's harder because you're not in school or I'm not anyway. I don't have a large social group that I'm a part of anymore where there's people all around all the time. It takes a lot more activity on my part. Do you know what I mean?

[17:25] Dating Strategy Evaluation

[17:25] Well i know that you're dodging the answer i can hear the filibustering right so i asked you and i'm not trying to catch you out i just want to be clear right and so if i've got something wrong let me know so you're 30 let's just say you're 30 right and and you said two to four years ago i began to think that i should probably find a group with shared interests right and i said when did you start interested in dating 14 or 15 let's just say 15 right so if it was four years ago at 26 then from 15 to 26 which is 11 years it didn't you said because you said like i've been thinking for the and so i think what you're saying is well when i was a kid it was easier we had shared groups, but since you've been an adult you you haven't right so let's say from the age of 20 not as not.

[18:10] As many anyway.

[18:11] Okay let's not quibble please i'm begging you please let's not quibble okay i say you haven't had shared well not quite as many and it's like well okay right if i say you don't date you say well i've had a couple of dates it's like that's that's going to quibble us into infinity so yeah so i mean for like from the age of say 20 or or whatever to to 26 or 27 it didn't occur to you i mean did you go to university did you meet girls through shared interest there or how did that go i.

[18:40] I went for a couple years and that's where that's where i i went to therapy initially and found went on my first couple of dates around age 19 yeah Yeah.

[18:49] And the dates that you had in college, did it follow the similar pattern of no particular interest?

[18:56] Yeah, pretty much.

[18:58] Okay. Have you met women that you find interesting, but obviously are unavailable to date, maybe because of an age difference, or they're already in a relationship, or married, or mothers? Have you met women that you find interesting and you've had sustained interesting conversations with, but they're just not available for some reason, or not compatible?

[19:21] Yeah, yeah. I mean, I've met women that I find interesting. Sure.

[19:27] Okay and but you've not met any in women that you find interesting that have gone on a date or did you think they were interesting and then you find out that they're not um.

[19:37] I just i just haven't dated any of them i guess.

[19:44] Right so that's another fog right because that's not any of the categories, so when i say like have you asked women out that you thought were interesting interesting. And then so of the interesting women, you say, I've never dated them, but I don't know if that's because they're single, but there's too much of an age gap. Maybe they're 50. I don't know if that's because they have a boyfriend or they're mothers or they're married or, you know, they're in another country. Like, I don't know why you didn't date them. So why didn't you date the women that you found interesting?

[20:15] Oh, well, there's one recently that was a single mom. I mean, I mean, there's one a long time ago that was already in a relationship, et cetera. So, like, multiple different ones at different times.

[20:31] The single mom you found, like, she was interesting, good conversationalist, she had some interest, is that right?

[20:37] Yes.

[20:38] Okay, got it. But you didn't want to date her because she was a single mom, right?

[20:43] Exactly, yeah.

[20:44] Got it, got it. Okay. So... You would be withholding yourself from the marketplace by putting yourself in situations where you can't succeed, right? And a lot of people do this, and I've done this myself, so a lot of people do this. You put yourself in a situation where you can't succeed, and then you complain that you're not succeeding, right? You can't succeed this way. Uh just asking random women out without any filtering and and like that's just not a way to succeed and you know if you've asked out 10 women over the course of your life and then you say i haven't found my wife then you're saying that it she should have been among the 10 randomly chosen women should be somebody who's wonderfully compatible with you right i mean With no filters and random askings, and not many, right? You're asking out a woman approximately every year, on average, right? I know what you're saying. It could probably cluster. Yeah. But there's just no way that you can find someone who's compatible. I mean, it's like playing the lottery and hoping to retire, right?

[22:04] Right.

[22:05] Okay. And again, you're a smart fellow. I put everyone who listens to this show in the top 1% of intelligence.

[22:10] The Question of Self-Esteem

[22:11] Intelligence so then the question is why are you pretending to pursue a goal, and what's the undertow right so you have this i want a girlfriend but you're not joining the groups where you can find compatible women you're not finding a way to filter women so that you can can find someone who's compatible and have you uh what's your sort of history or story with with dating apps with.

[22:46] Dating apps uh.

[22:51] Yeah yes with dating apps oh.

[22:53] Sorry sorry you broke up a little bit um i i've used them before but they're they're trash and i i don't i don't use them anymore i've I've done on one date through one a long time ago, but it was just, it was awful. It was, it was impossible to get attention on there, at least for me. So yeah, I don't, I don't waste my time with them.

[23:14] And what was bad about the date that you got from the dating app? Yeah.

[23:21] Um, I mean, it was, it was fine. I mean, well, I don't know. I mean, it was just kind of a kind of a random woman that I like, like we've been talking about that I didn't have any shared interests with. Just kind of kind of an awkward conversation. I guess it was a long time ago. I don't, I don't remember it super well, but it wasn't.

[23:46] It wasn't terrible. It just wasn't great.

[23:48] Right no no it just wasn't yeah okay.

[23:51] So your current strategy for meeting women is like tell me the last woman you asked out like how did you meet her and and how did it how did you ask her out and what happened.

[24:01] Um i was just at a nice cocktail bar and she sat nearby when she came in, And I just started talking to her about one of my hobbies and got her number and tried to arrange a date later on, but she basically ghosted me after that.

[24:27] Right. Okay. Okay. And did you have any sense of how old she was?

[24:34] Maybe 23, 24, something like that.

[24:36] Okay, so you're going through a pretty big age gap there, but not insurmountable, but fairly large, right?

[24:44] Right.

[24:45] Okay. And when you were talking with her about your hobbies, how was she in the conversation?

[24:56] She seemed to find it interesting.

[25:01] And can you tell me about the hobbies that you were telling her about?

[25:06] Um, I've been really into poker recently, so I was, I just, I, I didn't, uh, I don't know. I was just looking for, for something to start a conversation about. And that just happened to be something I've been really enthusiastic about lately. So I just kind of started talking to her about it.

[25:23] About poker.

[25:25] Yes. Okay.

[25:26] And did she play cards at all?

[25:29] Uh, she, yeah, it was super random, but she told me she had actually been on a, on an online poker kick recently.

[25:37] Ah, okay. And what other hobbies did you talk to her about, if any?

[25:43] That was the only one. It was a short conversation.

[25:46] How long did she chat for?

[25:49] I would say five to 10 minutes.

[25:54] And did she, other than her responding to your poker thing with her poker thing, did she mention any other hobbies?

[26:07] Um, no, I don't, I don't believe so. No.

[26:09] Okay. Right. So that is a low risk. I mean, good for you for the cold open, so to speak, right? You're going to talk to some woman and you've never met her before. I mean, that takes some guts and, you know, good for you for that. But it seems a little bit that you would be playing it safe. I mean yeah it's not it's not it's very level stuff and it's yeah it's very so and again i'm not sure how much you can get into things at any kind of deep level in sort of five to ten minutes but how did the conversation wind down did she have to go or did you have to go.

[26:50] She she had to go i was i was there reading and i started talking to her like a little while after she came in uh and and then she had to go shortly after we we started talking five or ten minutes.

[27:03] So she came into a bar and then she said she had to go five or ten minutes into being in the bar.

[27:11] No no i was just i was sitting at the bar reading for a little while and she was there and i didn't talk to her for a little.

[27:17] While and after.

[27:18] She had come into the bar that's what i yeah.

[27:20] Yeah it's not a great sign if the woman's there for a while but then she suddenly has to to go after five or ten minutes of talking to you right right right okay yeah.

[27:29] It's it's not you're right all.

[27:31] Right okay so let's go back to how much you feel you have to offer a wife and children, i mean will you be a great husband and father in in your view.

[27:56] I mean, I think I could be.

[28:02] So, why wouldn't you have some idea of that, given that you're 30? I mean, you've had 15 years to think about dating and marriage and being a husband and a father and so on, right?

[28:19] Yeah. Yeah. Why wouldn't I have some idea of whether or not I would be a good father and husband at age 30?

[28:31] Right.

[28:40] I'm not sure.

[28:46] Because here's the thing. When you get older, then you are in possession of information that you don't have when you're like 16 or 17 or 18, right? So you've now been an adult for 12 years. So a woman is going to look at you and say, okay, so he's 30, which has some pluses and some minuses, right? Now, I mean, some of the pluses are you're more established in your career. You probably have some money, some assets, some resources, and so on. But the problem is that the more valuable you are, the more of a mystery it is as to why you'd still be single. Like, you know, why hasn't some woman snatched you up? So women are looking at a 30-year-old, let's say a woman's looking at a 30-year-old guy in a bar who's reading, oh sorry, Cocktail Lounge, and she's going to say, why is he single? Why is he single?

[29:46] Now, she is not going to be able to judge whether you will be a great husband and father, because she's just met you. So, what do women do with this information problem, right? In order to figure out whether they want to be interested in a guy, because, you know, I'm not saying you are, obviously, see, but you could be some psycho killer, some stalker, some weird guy, some whatever, right? Someone who's going to just not leave them alone. So they have a risk, particularly with a guy they've never met, because there's no social filtering. You're not a friend of a friend. You don't come with any vetting. You don't come with any references. You're just some guy in a bar. And if you're relatively comfortable talking to women in a bar, then she's going to be even more suspicious, because it's like, okay, this guy's in a bar. I assume you're reasonably good looking right yeah okay so this reasonably good looking guy who's comfortable talking to women in a bar is still single why so she's going to be suspicious right now that doesn't mean that that's the end of the world or anything but just just be aware right that right she's going to be suspicious of that like if he's comfortable talking to women he's probably been talking to women for 15 years and no woman has become his girlfriend why right so there's going to be some some alarm there. Now, she's not going to be able to judge.

[31:13] You because of incomplete information other than the subtle information that you're a good looking successful guy sitting in a bar reading which means you're intelligent, you're literate, and you have enough money to sit in a bar and order drinks or whatever and so she's going to see all of that and you have a reasonably healthy body weight, yeah yeah okay so yeah you're you know a normal guy intelligent and and literate and you know she would assume relatively successful given that you're sitting in a bar or a cocktail lounge so those are all of the the pluses but with every plus at your age comes a minus which is okay if If there are all these pluses, why is he single? Now, she can't judge directly your abilities or skills or value as a husband and a father. So she can't judge those things directly. So, what is she going to do to try and figure out how good she'll be as a husband and a.

[32:36] I mean, just using, I mean, indirectly, I guess. I mean, just using, I mean, all the information that she does have to make a best guess.

[32:53] Well, sure. I mean, that's basically what I just said. So how is she going to judge your fitness as a potential husband and father? She's going to use your evaluation of it. Right so this is this is the question of self-esteem when i meet someone if they're really self-effacing and shy and don't want to say anything i'd be like okay like and at my age this person would be you know probably at least in their 40s right, and my feeling is okay so you've been kind of an adult for a quarter century i can't judge you, but you've you know yourself and you've already judged you so if somebody says well i don't have have anything to offer, and I don't meet people like this particularly anymore, but I did when I was younger. So if someone comes along and says, well, you know, based on their body language and their eyes are downcast, and they say, well, I don't really have anything to offer, and I'm really, really shy, and you're going to have to do all the work, I'd be like, well, I can't judge you, but I can see that you've judged you. And given that you know infinitely more about yourself than I do, I'm going to accept your judgment.

[34:01] I mean, if I come up with some, I find some really old coin on the beach, and I go to some guy who's got 25 years experience evaluating coins, and let's say he's got no conflict of interest, I sort of pay him to evaluate the coin, I would take his evaluation, right? I don't know the coin, but he spent 25 years studying what is or is not a valuable coin, right? So I would take his judgment, right? Right. In the same way, I haven't studied much dentistry, but my dentist has, so I take her recommendations, right? So what she's going to do is she's going to judge your judgment of yourself. Because you are the expert in yourself, and she's a total noob. She's just meeting you for the first time. So she is going to judge you according to the judgment you have of yourself. Now, I don't know exactly the mechanisms by which these judgments transfer, but they do. It could be eye contact. It could be vocal tone. It could be posture. It could be the topics that are chosen. It could be spontaneity. It could be all of these things.

[35:27] Things, but somehow your evaluation of yourself will transfer to the woman, and she will take that as gospel.

[35:40] So, if you don't know whether you'd be a good husband and father, given that that's kind of your job as a man, right? You have to figure these things out. I mean, why are there men? Because we become husbands and fathers. That's the whole point of most people's lives, is to reproduce, and you do want to do it. Do I have this right? Like, you want to be a husband and father at some point?

[36:03] Yeah.

[36:04] Okay. So you want to be a husband and a father at some point, so it's your job to figure out what you have to offer and to be confident in that, right? And, you know, if you go to a dentist, and the dentist has been a dentist for like 15 years, and the dentist is like, yeah, I don't know, I mean, I'm not sure exactly what the pink stuff is at the base of the tooth, and I don't really know what these scraping tools are for, and I don't really know what value I have to offer as a dentist, will you go back to that dentist?

[36:39] No, of course not.

[36:40] Of course not. Now, if the dentist is right out of school, like I remember when I was a kid, my mom used to take me to get my haircut at the haircutting school. I was like a guinea pig, right? Because it was like two bucks to get my haircut if they were practicing on me, but nobody would guarantee me a decent haircut, right? You got these weird bowl cuts and stuff like that, right? Right. I remember some. I remember one of the hairdressing students, you know, sort of felt my hair and said, oh, you swim a lot, don't you? I'm like, well, yeah, I'm on the water polo team, swim team and all that. And she's like, yeah, I can tell from your hair. It's a little bit green and it's kind of brittle. And I remember the instructor was like, yeah, come back tomorrow. She'll tell your whole fortune. And so i wasn't expecting great haircuts from the students and if somebody is fresh out of dentistry school i can understand a bit of tentativeness but then of course i would expect the price to be lower but you're not fresh out of dating school you've been interested in dating for 15 years right so for 15 years you've been trying to sell yourself as a potential husband and father, and you you're not sure of the value you might bring which means that deep down you're just going to feel fraudulent, aren't you?

[38:05] Yeah. Yeah, I guess so.

[38:08] I mean, I know I'm great with kids. I have kids in the family, extended family, when I was growing up. And I was always great fun with them. I worked in a daycare. Like, I'm great with kids. And so I knew that was going to be the case. I am a great husband and so on. And, you know, it took a while to find the woman who was going to recognize that and really value that. And the same thing was true with my wife. She's a wonderful mother and a perfect wife for me, and it just took a while for her to find somebody who was going to value that. I didn't doubt my value, it was just kind of frustrating that sometimes people didn't see the value that I knew I had, and then when I found someone who did, you know, we've been happily married for like 21 years and all of that. So, that's the question. What are the blocks, do you think, that's in your mind that have you doubt whether you'd be a good husband and father?

[39:11] Well, I mean, being almost 30 and having no dating history at all.

[39:17] I mean, I guess that… No, no, sorry. I knew you were going to go there. I didn't want to warn you ahead of time, but that's similar, right? Because if you had true confidence that you were going to be a great husband and father, you wouldn't be single now.

[39:37] Yeah. Yeah.

[39:48] So why do you think the doubt is there? What do you think? Is there something missing in you? I mean, you see couples all around. You see people getting married, having kids. I mean, obviously, they're not all great people, but if you're not on the carousel, why? What do you feel might be missing from you? And I assume this is from the beginning because it wasn't like you had a lot of dating experience and some great relationships that didn't quite work out, and then your confidence went down. I assume your confidence wasn't super high from the beginning, right?

[40:18] No, no, it wasn't.

[40:20] Okay, so what do you think is lacking or missing in your confidence that is transmitting itself to women and having them steer clear?

[40:32] Well, I mean, I've never found it easy to connect with women on an emotional level. So, I mean, I think that's definitely part of it. I'm not sure why that is exactly.

[40:55] Do you feel that this is the case for you with men as well?

[41:02] Less, less so with men. I mean, it's, it's easier to, well, yeah. Okay. Yeah. Maybe, maybe it is with men too. I was going to say it's easier to relate to men about, about different things, like just shared interests and stuff like that. But, uh, that's not, that's not on an emotional level.

[41:20] But that's totally boring shit, man. There's nothing wrong with it, but I play poker. I mean, this is not reaching each other at a soul level, right? Right.

[41:30] Right. Yeah. I just don't know how to start a conversation sometimes. Like I want to, but I, I don't. Yeah. I know it's, I know it's kind of dumb.

[41:39] Okay. So do you feel that you and I are connecting emotionally over the course of this conversation? We were talking about some pretty intimate stuff, right?

[41:47] Sure. Yeah.

[41:49] Sorry. Sure. Yeah. Yes. We're talking about emotional stuff. Sorry.

[41:54] Yes. Yeah. We're talking about emotional stuff.

[41:58] Okay. What was my other question?

[42:02] Are we connecting on an emotional level?

[42:04] Building Confidence and Self-Perception

[42:04] Right.

[42:06] No. I mean, I'm not saying it's your fault. I'm just saying no. I mean, it's...

[42:30] I'm sorry, are you still there?

[42:33] Yes, yeah, I'm here.

[42:34] Sorry, I wasn't sure if that was the end of the sentence or not. I'm not sure if you were halfway through a thought.

[42:39] Yeah, I was trailing off. No, I guess we're not.

[42:48] I'm sorry, I'm not sure what you mean. Are you truly guessing that, like you have no idea if we are or not?

[42:56] Well, I guess I don't really know exactly how to judge that.

[43:02] Okay, have you had a relationship or a conversation where you do feel something a little bit different from this kind of avoidance and awkwardness that's kind of going on between us, where you have a sort of direct back and forth, you're not jumpy, you're not defensive, you're not avoiding answering, you're not vaguing out or clouding out or gapping out, or like there's a direct back and forth communication, heart to heart, no. No interference no avoidance yeah.

[43:34] Yeah i've had that.

[43:36] Okay can you tell me about that.

[43:40] Oh just one of my one of my buddies that i work with um he had a very difficult childhood and we we've gotten into that quite a bit um at various times.

[43:52] Okay so you've had that real connection with someone right.

[43:56] Sure yes yes.

[43:57] And do you feel that you and i are having that real connection no okay so i'm not sure what you mean when you say you don't know the difference like because i was saying do you think we're connected you're like well i don't really know the difference i don't really know whether we are connected or not but you compare it to what's going on with your friend at work and you feel the difference, Yes. So this is what's tough about communicating, for me, with you, is that it's all over the map and things contradict themselves and you don't even seem to notice. Like you say, well, I don't know if we're connecting or not because I don't know what it's like to connect with someone. And I say, well, have you connected? Oh, yeah, no, I connect with my friend really deeply. And it's like, well, then wouldn't you notice the difference? You know what I mean? It's a little confusing.

[44:42] Yeah, yeah.

[44:43] And I'm not criticizing. I'm not criticizing. criticizing i'm just pointing out that it's a it's a little all all over the map if that makes sense yeah.

[44:53] I see what you mean.

[44:54] Right and then when i was asking you and again none of this is a criticism at all at all it's totally fine i'm just sort of pointing it out yeah i yeah i asked you.

[45:03] To be as blunt as you.

[45:04] Yeah and so when i was asking you to be mad yeah so when i was asking you about, you know what you were saying that you know that for you said for a couple of years you've needed to join groups with similar interests. And I said, oh, okay, well, how long has that been? And you fogged out for a bit, and then we got you to two to four years. And then I said, okay, so for a long time, you didn't. It's like, well, I kind of did, or there was school, and it just feels like we kind of get nowhere. And a lot of people would just get exhausted and tap out, because there's just a lot of fog, and there's a lot of confusion, and it's hard to, And, you know, there's a lot of I guesses and maybe and sure, kind of, you know, all that sort of stuff, right? Yeah. And so for a lot of people, it's hard to get to the real you because there's a lot of fog and almost misdirection and avoidance and defensiveness and avoidance of attack or something like that. And so it's hard to just have a clear conversation. Now, of course, you could say, and well, well, if I don't know, am I supposed to fake knowledge? Knowledge, but even when you do have clear knowledge where you say, I have a great conversation with my friend at work, but I don't know the difference between that and other things, it's like, well, that doesn't make any sense then. If you have a clear opposite, then you would know the difference, right?

[46:23] Yeah. Okay.

[46:25] So it seems to me that there's a certain amount of dodginess or avoidance in your personality. And so now I did give you, and I was certainly happy to give it a shot, right? Because I said, how do you want to approach things? And you were very clear, and I appreciate that clarity. And you said, I don't want to do childhood. I want to do strategies, right?

[46:50] Right.

[46:51] But unfortunately, when talking about strategies, we run into the kind of fog that can only be generated from childhood. These are habits that come out of childhood, right? This level of avoidance. And I don't think that you have particularly noticed that you're avoiding or dodging and you haven't said, oh, you know what? I have contradicted myself. It's all a strategy in the moment to not be criticized or to not be in the wrong or to not be at fault or something like that, right? The moment that we started talking about not being emotionally connected, you immediately started to say, well, I'm not saying it's your fault. Somebody has to be at fault. There has to be a problem. Somebody's going to get criticized. So I did give it a shot, if you don't mind. I mean, we have to do the childhood stuff because the childhood stuff is interfering with the adult stuff, and you weren't aware of that, right?

[47:47] Yeah. I see what you mean.

[47:50] So I'm afraid I'll have to take the reins if you don't mind. And let's talk about the childhood stuff. So how were you disciplined or punished or corrected as a child?

[48:03] Spanking sometimes. That was one way. Not being able to spend time on the computer. What else? Those are the two that stand out off the top of my head. As far as discipline for wrongdoing goes.

[48:22] Okay. And how often will you spank?

[48:30] It's tough to remember. I mean, not a ton, but maybe a few times a year or something when I was really young.

[48:36] Okay. And what sort of behaviors were you punished for?

[48:56] Well it's it's tough to remember exactly what i would have gotten spanked for um okay.

[49:01] So this is this is an example of annoying annoying speech i'm just.

[49:06] I'm not saying hang on Let me finish.

[49:08] Right.

[49:09] Okay, go ahead.

[49:10] So did I use the word exactly?

[49:17] You said, well, what sorts of things.

[49:19] Right. So I'm asking for a category, and you're saying, well, it's tough to remember exactly. So you've taken what I've said. I'm just asking for broad categories. And then you say, well, it's tough to remember exactly what I was spanked for, which is not what I asked for. I mean, I didn't say, I want you to tell me exactly what you were spanked for. That would be a meaningless question, because it would be different each time, right? And I don't know what it would mean to say, what exactly? So you inserted a word that gives you an excuse to avoid answering. And that's, like, that insertion of the word is a complete straw man of what it is they asked for. Now, you can say, I don't remember any categories. I don't remember anything about what I was spanked for. But instead, you insert the word exactly, which is not at all what I asked for. It's almost the complete opposite of what I asked for. I asked for general categories, and you inserted the word exactly and said, well, I can't remember exactly. And what that means is you're not listening. You're having a conversation with your defenses, and you're reinterpreting what I say.

[50:29] Based upon your desire to avoid answering the question. And you don't even seem to notice that. Like, you don't say, well, Steph, I know you asked for categories, but I have this urge to talk about exactly what the answer is. That's not what I'm asking for, right? Like, if I say, on average, how tall are Danish people, and you say, well, I don't know the exact height of every Danish person, it's like, that's not... But you don't even notice that you're reinterpreting and retranslating and completely sabotaging the conversation. Does that make sense?

[51:05] Yes, yes.

[51:06] And so this somewhat annoying, I'm not saying you're being annoying, I'm saying for me it's annoying.

[51:13] Yeah.

[51:13] Right, this somewhat annoying reinterpretation makes it pretty exhausting to talk to you, if that makes sense. I'm not saying I'm exhausted, but I think for the average person would just be like, well, this is a negative experience, I think I have to leave the cocktail bar.

[51:26] Okay.

[51:27] And that's good news, right? That's good news. Because if you're doing something wrong, you can do something right. Okay, so let's go back.

[51:33] Yeah, it would be, yeah.

[51:34] No, sorry, go ahead.

[51:36] I was just going to say, it's the same thing as not having a plan. It would be bad news if I had been doing everything great all along.

[51:44] Right, right.

[51:45] And I still hadn't had any success.

[51:47] Okay, so let's go back. What were the general categories, categories? What were the general categories of behaviors that you were punished for? And I can give you some examples if they're not popping to mind.

[51:58] They're not popping in my mind.

[52:00] Okay, so it could be talking back. It could be getting bad grades. It could be any general disobedience. It could be a failure to listen and obey. It could be embarrassing your parents in public. It could be getting in trouble at school. It could be stealing or lying. These are the general categories of things that children get punished for. It could be others, but those are just off the top of my head.

[52:26] Yeah i'm general disobedience um i i did lie a decent amount when i was a kid too so so there there is that i'm sure that happened um there's one other one that you mentioned but it slipped my mind somehow um uh.

[52:45] Bad grades getting in trouble.

[52:46] Talking back oh talking That's what it was, yes.

[52:52] Okay, so can you think of, now here we're going to specifics, and it's okay if you don't remember, but can you think of a specific example where you were punished for talking back? So basically it just means thinking differently from your parents, having an independent mind, and disagreeing with your parents, right? I mean, that's what it basically means. So can you think of a time when you got punished for what would be called talking back or disobeying?

[53:17] I i can't think of a specific one um i i got spanked when i was really really young so uh it's it's tough to remember back quite that far and.

[53:29] Do you remember roughly what age you were when you were spanked.

[53:32] Under under 10 i would say oh.

[53:37] That's not really young.

[53:38] Yeah I.

[53:39] Think it's like two or.

[53:40] Three.

[53:41] Okay.

[53:42] Oh, no, no, no, no, no. No, sorry. I mean, maybe, I don't know exactly, but definitely under 10, it would have stopped after that, I think. It's tough to remember. It's tough to remember specifically.

[53:54] Okay, and you also mentioned that computer access was blocked and so on when you would do what? Assume this was in your teens?

[54:04] Yes, that would have been, yeah. Yes, later on.

[54:07] And what sort of behaviors in your teens would get your computer blocked?

[54:18] Probably just not doing what I was supposed to do, like if I wasn't doing homework and stuff. And that would have been probably around 10 to 13 or something like that.

[54:34] Okay. And did your parents ever ask you why you didn't want to do homework? Thank you.

[54:46] Um, no, no, sorry, I'm doing it again. I know.

[54:55] No, that's fine. If you say no, that's an honest answer. I don't, you're not saying, well, I can't remember or what specific or anything like that. So you're saying in general, you can't remember if your parents asked you why you didn't want to do homework.

[55:13] One no and that yeah i don't remember i no no sorry i i can't remember if they if they asked me or not ask me why.

[55:23] Okay can you think of a time when you did something that your parents disapproved of that they asked you why you did it so for instance you said that you lied a lot i personally i'm just telling you my own personal preference this is nothing to do with right or wrong i don't like it when people say i lied as a child because children have no independence no, moral stature so if an adult lies that's one thing but children are just trying to survive, you know and and if a guy lies you know the old canteen argument you know oh you got to tell the truth okay so some guy comes and says he wants to kill your wife and demands to know where she is do you tell the truth it's like well i would never condemn anyone for relying in that situation right i mean that's not even lying that's just surviving right, so i try not to use adult moral terms on children because they're not adults and they're just trying to survive in a situation and so what sort of things maybe we could use the word fib or i don't know if that makes any sense but let me just say with lie okay so what sort of things would you lie about as a kid it.

[56:35] Well, this isn't a lie, but this is just the first thing that popped into mind. I stole $40 from my brother one time, and I guess there is a lie in it, too. I denied it fervently, wouldn't admit that I had done it. That was one thing. That was the biggest thing that popped into my mind.

[56:57] And how old were you when you did that?

[57:03] Between 10 and... 10 and 12, probably, somewhere around then.

[57:08] Okay. And what did you buy with the $40, or did you just keep it?

[57:15] I just kept it. I couldn't tell you what I bought with it. Okay.

[57:19] Where did you hide it? Is it still there? No, I'm just kidding. Where did you hide it?

[57:27] I probably just used my wallet. I don't think I made an attempt to hide it.

[57:32] Oh, so wasn't that pretty easy to figure out? Like, he thinks you stole the money, they just check your wallet, oh, there's 40 bucks. Well, that's it, right? It's not like you got 40 bucks lying around after when you're 10 years old, right?

[57:45] I might have. I mean, I probably did. Just chores, mowing the lawn, etc.

[57:53] Okay. Now, why do you think you took the money from your brother?

[58:06] Um, because I wanted, because I wanted it, I guess. I mean, I don't, I don't have a better answer than that.

[58:14] Well, okay. But we want lots of things, right? I mean, when you go to the store, you want candy. That doesn't mean you pocket it, right? As a kid.

[58:21] Right, right, right.

[58:22] So why did you take the $40? Do you think?

[58:32] I thought I could get away with it, I guess. um.

[58:42] Okay, let me ask you another question. What are some moral or life lessons that your parents instructed you on that you still use to this day?

[59:01] I mean, it's ironic, but don't steal. I mean, just Ten Commandments stuff. I'm still used to this day.

[59:16] Well, I mean, I assume that you don't have big temptations to steal at the moment, right?

[59:21] No, no. Okay. Okay. Yeah, I see what you mean. I'm still used to this day. Sorry, I'm drawing a blank.

[59:40] No, that's fine. I mean, so, in general, it doesn't sound like you got a lot of parenting. I mean, you got some lectures on the Ten Commandments, I guess, but you didn't get much parenting, right, in terms of getting valuable lessons that help you guide your way through life.

[59:56] Yeah, that's correct.

[59:58] Money Matters and Parental Guidance

[59:58] So, I can tell you why, and it's funny, because I just had this convo yesterday with someone, so it's kind of fresh in my brain. So, I can tell you why you took the $40. Okay. Yeah. So you wanted $40, right? As, let's say, 11, right? You said somewhere between 10 and 12, right? So you wanted the $40, right? Now, do you know what happens in a healthy parent-child relationship? Yeah.

[1:00:25] Um the parent would would talk would have a conversation about it maybe and not and not just jump straight to punishment.

[1:00:35] No as if i had like the moral no no i mean what yeah because you're already like you've stolen right yeah yeah i'm talking about a healthy relationship a healthy relationship first of all the parents recognize that children need money children want money of Of course they do, because you want some independence, and you don't want to be begging your parents for everything, right? Children want property, they want things of their own, they want money, all these things, right? So you would recognize that your child, you know, starting from the age of sort of eight or nine, is going to want a couple of bucks.

[1:01:12] Somebody used to, an old guy in my neighborhood when I was a kid, he said, walking around money. Here, here's some walking around money. So, you're going to want, and even if you don't spend it, you're going to want some money, right? So, the parents have to figure out how to get money into the hands of children without just giving it to them, because then that just teaches you to just be given stuff, right? So, in a healthy parent-child relationship, the parents say, okay, so, you know, sorry, eight or nine, a kid's going to start to want money, and you do that by remembering how you were at the age of eight or nine or something like that. And then you say, okay, so how are how are we going to teach this kid about money? How are we going to teach this kid about earning stuff and saving stuff and spending stuff and all that kind of stuff? So you start to work with your kids, whatever age, you know, eight or nine is not bad. It could be different. You start to work with your kids about money. So you wanted $40, which is perfectly natural for an 11-year-old. You wanted $40 and you had no idea how to get it without stealing it. Does that make sense?

[1:02:12] Yeah.

[1:02:13] Now, if you had a healthy relationship with your parents, you'd say, Mom, Dad, I really want some money. And what would they say?

[1:02:25] Here's something you can do to earn some money.

[1:02:30] Well, yeah. I mean, they'd say, look, I'm sorry that you have to come to us. We should have dealt with this as parents, right? Teaching kids about money is, you understand, it's one of the most foundational things about parenting is teaching your kids about money. because money is so important to happiness, right? It's like that old Charles Dickens thing said, basically, income $40,000 a year, expenses $41,000 a year result misery. Expenses income $40,000 a year, expenses $39,000 a year result happiness, right? It's that narrow a swing, right? So teaching your kids about money is foundational. So they'd say, gee, I'm really sorry we left it so long. You want the money. I totally understand that. So, let's talk about money. Let's talk about how you get it. Let's talk about, like, you know, you can set up a lemonade stand. You can offer, you can take my mower and you can offer to mow people's lawns. You can offer to wash people's cars. You can, you know, you can just sort of go through the list of things that kids can do to try and get a hold of some money. You know, you can offer to watch people's houses if they're going on vacation. Like, there's tons of things that you can do. You know, if there's a pool in the neighborhood, you can offer if they're away to make sure that the pool is filled and all of that, right? So there's tons of things that you can do to try and earn some money, right? Or, you know, your brother has some money. Your brother's older than you, is that right?

[1:03:57] Yeah. Okay. Yes.

[1:03:59] So then you would say, look, your brother has some money, and maybe there's things that you can do. You can trade with your brother to get some money, right? There's things that he wants you to do. Maybe some, I mean, maybe not homework, because I know your brother's supposed to be doing it, but maybe there's things that you can trade that your brother wants. Maybe you have a bike that he wants, or maybe there's something that he wants done that, you know, maybe you can do some of his chores and he can pay you. Or, you know, any number of things that you can do to try and start to get the relationship between work and income. And that way you learn something, but you didn't go to your parents saying, I want money. You took the money. And you took the money out of despair.

[1:04:43] Lessons from Childhood: Stealing and Parenting

[1:04:43] Everyone who takes is confessing that they don't know how to earn or trade. Like your parents could say, listen, you've got a bunch of toys that you don't play with anymore. Why don't you have a garage sale? I mean, that's kind of fun, right? Going through everything, looking up the value, labeling it, putting the flyers up. I mean, that's fun, right?

[1:05:08] Yeah.

[1:05:10] And you can then learn the pluses and minuses and the ups and downs and the goods and bads of earning money and, and work and reward and effort and investment and planning and right. How to be, you know, pleasant and have good customer service or like whatever it is, right. Whatever you're doing. So the reason that you took the $40 is you hadn't been taught anything about how to get $40 without stealing. In other words, you stole because you were stolen from, and what was stolen from you was parenting, guidance, advice, feedback, utility, helpfulness, value. And your brother, how did your brother get the 40 bucks? Do you remember?

[1:05:58] I don't remember. Probably doing some form of work.

[1:06:02] Okay. And how much older was he?

[1:06:06] Three years. Three years older.

[1:06:08] Now, was he a good brother? Did he look out for you? Did he help you along? Did he bring you along? Did he guide you? Did he, you know, he learned something new? Did he try and teach it to you? Did he transfer any of the value that he got out of life to you when you were a kid or anything like that?

[1:06:27] Yeah he when we were kids he was in some ways um and and he's actually a listener of your show too and we've talked about this but uh i uh i was excluded a lot when i was a kid just from things that i would have liked to been have been included in um like like with him and his friends okay so he he had some he had some.

[1:06:48] Way of getting a hold of the 40 dollars and he.

[1:06:51] Didn't bring you.

[1:06:52] Along or teach you anything about how to get money, right?

[1:06:58] No.

[1:07:00] Okay, so, I mean, one example would be, you know, when I was, I don't know, 11 or whatever, I had a paper route. I had, like, a job and a paper route. And I didn't have a younger brother, but if I had a younger brother, I would have said something like, you know, hey, you know, come and help me with the paper route and I'll give you some money. And then I would teach him about, you know, here's how to put the advertising inserts in, here's the giant sack of papers, here's how to ride your bike without it falling into the spokes, you know. Whatever it is. So you try and transfer some knowledge to your brother, because you care about your brother and you want him to come along, and particularly if the parents aren't doing it. So then you wouldn't need to take $40 from him, because he would have already figured out a way for you to earn some portion of that.

[1:07:51] Right stealing is an act of despair nobody's helping me nobody's parenting nobody's teaching me a goddamn thing so i'm just going to take stuff i mean they're taken from me because they're not parenting me and you're mad at your brother because he's not bringing you along on his life's journey to some degree and listen i'm not blaming him like he was 14 and you were 11 or something like that but you know right yeah it's still it's still it's still not great and of Of course, if he looks back, he would say, well, yeah, like, why?

[1:08:19] Stealing as an Act of Despair

[1:08:20] So the problem is that you're stealing because the family screwed up. But you are what is called the identified patient. Oh, no, he stole. That's bad. He just made a choice and in a void of his own perfect free will to steal. And it's like, no, he didn't.

[1:08:39] No, he didn't. First of all, stealing is wired into our biological natures. Half of nature is animals stealing from each other, right? I mean, every time a lion brings down a gazelle, there's like 300 jackals and vultures, they're all trying to steal stuff, right? I mean, the animals steal the eggs of the birds all the time.

[1:09:01] The Evolution Past Theft

[1:09:02] And theft is, you know, so theft is kind of wired into our nature. We have to evolve past that. And we do that through learning how to provide value and trade. Trade and earn right and you weren't taught that so you stayed in a primitive state of course you did how could you not right it's like if you grew up among wolves you wouldn't know english because you were raised by wolves you'd know how to you wouldn't know english, so if you're not taught anything about money i'm sorry go ahead i.

[1:09:31] Was just gonna say that was kind of a pattern for me when i was a kid cheating at games and stuff like that i did that a decent an amount cheating a game stealing a handful of times.

[1:09:41] And you said lying too like why do kids lie, because they can't get what they want by telling the truth and it's foundational to good parenting to have your children be able to get what they want by being good and if the only way that you can get what you want is by lying well what is your biological is your biological imperative to tell the truth or to survive to survive of course right because any all the kids who decided to tell the truth, even if that got them in massive trouble with their parents, they didn't generally tend to make it, right? So, it seems to me like you might have all of these moral judgments that your parents inflicted on you for behaviors that were entirely their fault for not being helpful parents, for not being wise parents, for not being instructive parents. And maybe because of the, you know, the fundamentalist religious views, they were like, Like, well, children are just born bad, you know, and they're going to lie, they're going to cheat, they're going to steal, and blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.

[1:10:42] Childhood Religious Views

[1:10:42] And so you just have to punish them. And it's like, well, that's just, that's terrible. That's terrible parenting.

[1:10:48] Yeah, it is. I grew up terrified that if I died randomly, I would just, I would go to hell because I wasn't good enough, you know?

[1:10:57] Right. And that's the essence of the first sort of hour of a conversation was fear, right? Like you're fearful of getting the wrong answer. You're fearful of giving the right answer if it makes, say, your parents look bad or you look bad. So you're doing a lot of management of fear. Is that a fair statement? And no criticism at all. I'm just something I'm seeing.

[1:11:18] No, I think you're right.

[1:11:22] Right. Now, fear is how attractive to women.

[1:11:30] It's not attractive it's the it's the opposite it's a repellent.

[1:11:34] Well it's it's we can say repellent and i think you're right but it is not going to inspire the feeling of have my children, because if you're a fearful guy it means that you're already kind of beaten down you're low status you can't win and you lack particular skills and you're not aware that you lack skills. So the fear is to cover up the bad parenting.

[1:12:05] And it's not just bad parenting. I mean, it's not like you can negotiate in school for anything. They just do what you're told or will take a year from your life by holding you back, right? Or punish you or, you know, when I was a kid, it was like hitting kids, caning and so on, right? So it's just like, do what we say or we'll F you up, right?

[1:12:21] Impact of Parental Moral Judgments

[1:12:21] That's sort of the essence sense of education and of course if your parents are that way and if if the religious view they gave you was well you know you're just kind of immoral and you've got to fight like hell against, the demons that infest and surround you and and like that's a pretty it's pretty terrifying worldview right yeah and i think i think children are born they're born good at least they're certainly born neutral we certainly can't say that they're born evil because babies can't be evil right and if right if we're honest and direct with our children they grow up to be great people, if we kind of ignore and punish them and and communicate to them that they're bad for breathing well guess what i mean they're going to grow up uncertain and nervous and and feeling like they don't have much value to add to people because they're bad right.

[1:13:17] Right right Right.

[1:13:20] So the reason I'm saying this is that if you have any sort of impression that as a kid, well, I just lied and I stole and, you know, whatever, whatever, I cheated and so on. It's like, well, you survived and I'm sorry that you were in a situation where you had to do that to survive, but I'm glad you did it. Like, if you can look back and say, thank goodness, thank my lucky stars, thank Zeus, thank whoever, thank goodness that I lied and stole and cheated. Because that indicated a very strong commitment to survival in the absence of any fundamental or useful moral instruction whatsoever. And in a dangerous and coercive environment, right? I mean, to take an extreme example, if you are in some sort of concentration camp and you can steal some food from the guards and get away with it, won't you do it? I mean, you're starving.

[1:14:12] Yeah, of course.

[1:14:13] So would you sit there and say, I'm so glad I stole because that's why I'm here?

[1:14:24] Yeah, I never thought to look at it that way.

[1:14:27] Because if you're carrying some of the shame, your parents will say, I mean, I assume they said, you stole because you're bad.

[1:14:37] Yes, it would have been something like that.

[1:14:39] You're a liar because you're bad, right? You cheat because you're bad. You're disobedient because you're bad, you're bad, you're bad, you're bad, you're bad, you're bad, you're bad, right?

[1:14:50] Mm-hmm.

[1:14:52] And thus taking all the deficiencies of their parenting and crucifying your soul in the image of their innocence and your bottomless guilt and corruption. Which is a totally shitty thing to do to a kid, by the way.

[1:15:12] Yeah, I agree.

[1:15:15] I mean, that's kind of Old Testament, to put it mildly, right?

[1:15:20] Yeah, yeah. I think it's a shitty thing to do to a kid to tell them that they'll go to hell because if they're, you know, if they're bad enough.

[1:15:31] Well, and then everything you do that you need to do to survive, they just call bad, right? So they put you in a situation where you feel that you need to do these things and your instincts are to do these things, right? Because you want the $40, but you have no idea how to get it in an honorable fashion and a fun fashion. And so you take it. Of course you do. Now of course of course like of course you do that's your biological imperative that's survive and then your parents take the biological imperative that they've inflicted and instilled upon you by not giving you any reasonable alternatives and then they just punish the living hell out of you for the situation that they created right, so are we getting some emotional connection now how you doing.

[1:16:21] Um no that all that all that makes sense um.

[1:16:36] I mean, and how can you love yourself or take delight in yourself, if the very people who gave you life call you bad for breathing or create situations where you end up acting on a biological imperative and then call you kind of demonically possessed or something like that or some equivalent? How can other people want you? Sorry, go ahead.

[1:17:06] And I was just going to say I can't unless I, I mean, understand what's driving that.

[1:17:16] Well, how can other people want you if you don't want you? How can other people love you if you don't love you? How can other people take delight in you?

[1:17:23] Well, they can't.

[1:17:24] They can't, right. Right. And so if you let your parents' narrative of sin and evil and so on, if you let that grind the glory of your being into a fine Old Testament powder, then won't all attempts to win a woman feel deep down like fraud?

[1:17:48] Yeah. And I should...

[1:17:53] No, go ahead. I'm so sorry.

[1:17:54] I was just going to say, I should specify that moralizing and stuff. That's, that's 99% from my mom. My dad was, was a different story. Um.

[1:18:08] Are you really going to try this one? Are you really going to try The Parent Who Got Away on me?

[1:18:13] No, no, no, no, no, no. I wasn't going to say The Parent Who Got Away. I was going to say something completely different. Basically, he was an alcoholic and used drugs before he ever met my mom. He was clean and sober from the time before I was born onward. But he had uh he had a temper and um long story short um just to just to give you an example i got caught with weed in high school and uh later and it was a whole big thing and later on he uh he told me that he had like basically smoked weed throughout my entire childhood behind everybody back and yet still punished me for doing it sorry i thought you was so i'm.

[1:19:03] Sorry i misunderstood something i thought you said he was clean and sober before he met your mom.

[1:19:08] Oh i clean yeah sober from alcohol and clean from all drugs except for marijuana what.

[1:19:15] Are you talking about you know how confusing that is.

[1:19:17] Oh i'm sorry my dad was clean and sober before.

[1:19:22] He He even met my mom. And then later you say he was a weed addict over the course of my entire childhood. It's like, what?

[1:19:30] I don't know. Yeah. Yeah. I apologize. I wasn't being very clear.

[1:19:36] No, no, no. You were being completely contradictory. And you weren't noticing it.

[1:19:40] Yeah.

[1:19:40] And that's part of the dissociation. So this is automatic language, which means you're not even listening to yourself. And I'm not criticizing, right? But you're not listening to yourself.

[1:19:48] Yeah.

[1:19:48] You don't even seem to notice that within 10 seconds, you went from my dad was clean and sober before he even met my mom to he was a weed addict throughout my childhood.

[1:19:58] Yeah, that just slipped my notice. Yeah, you're right.

[1:20:03] Well, no, but have you noticed these contradictions? I mean, this can't be the first time you said this, right? I mean, you have this automatic speech. Have you not noticed that this narrative is completely contradictory? Absolutely.

[1:20:18] I yeah i did i didn't i didn't notice that.

[1:20:21] Right so that means i've never associated and you're in you're in automatic speech territory which means clean and sober is the language that comes from someone else and the lady you found out that he was a drug addict when you were a kid right and now do you know for how long he was a drug addict when you were a kid i.

[1:20:39] I don't know it could have been any amount of time uh it could have been my entire childhood it could have been uh.

[1:20:46] Wait so he's gonna hit 10 years i was living at home i don't know sorry he hasn't he hasn't told you the truth about his addiction he.

[1:20:57] He might i i don't i don't remember exactly um.

[1:21:02] Okay, no, no, no, stop saying exactly.

[1:21:07] Oh, yeah, I did it again.

[1:21:09] Okay, stop it. What am I asking? Just take a deep breath, try to relax. What am I asking?

[1:21:16] A general idea of how long.

[1:21:23] What I'm asking is, your father said that he confessed to drug abuse when you were a child, right?

[1:21:31] Yes.

[1:21:32] Now, if somebody's going to confess to drug abuse, they need to tell you for how long it was. Because if it was like, well, you know, six months after you're born, I smoked some weed, as opposed to, you know, I smoked a bowl every day until you were 18, these are two vastly different situations, right?

[1:21:49] Right.

[1:21:50] So he confessed that he was a drug abuser when you were a child, but childhood lasts for, you know, 18 years. You know, if you're going to get sentenced by a judge, don't you want to know whether it's three months or 18 years? The time for it means something. So he has not been honest with you about how long he was addicted to the drugs for, right?

[1:22:17] Right, yeah. We talked about it a long time ago, and I got the impression it was like the majority of my childhood.

[1:22:25] Okay. So you've got one parent, your mother, who's thundering Old Testament vengeance sin god girl, and then you've got Clowder Hayes' dissociated, weak-willed, lying, manipulative, hypocritical dad. Because he's punishing you.

[1:22:46] Yeah.

[1:22:46] He's punishing you for your moral transgressions while high on weed.

[1:22:53] Right. While doing the same thing that he's punishing me for.

[1:22:57] Well, even if he wasn't, right? Even if he says to you, son, son, you lie. It's important to not lie, right? But he's a drug addict, which means his entire life is founded on lying.

[1:23:11] Hypocrisy and Drug Addiction

[1:23:12] It's not about you taking the drugs. it's about the whole damn thing all of it i mean addicts are chronic liars and then he gets mad at you for for lying, right holy crap i mean that's almost inevitable right hypocrisy and drug addiction are two sides of the same coin, did your mother know.

[1:23:41] I think he hid it from her for like like for most of the time i mean she found out at some point but i think he was like i think he was like hiding it from her too.

[1:23:54] And did he smoke or how did he get his marijuana the marijuana into his system.

[1:24:00] He he smoked it.

[1:24:02] How the as far as i know i mean you can tell if someone's smoking marijuana on the block yeah how do you hide it i.

[1:24:11] Mean like i think he would do it in the garage just like or maybe when she wasn't home uh that that kind of thing just just very evasively.

[1:24:21] Okay but the smell lingers how did he hide it and does that mean that he would smoke when he was in charge of little children when your mother was not around?

[1:24:36] Yeah, he I don't know. He might have. It's likely, yeah.

[1:24:43] No, no, it's not more. It's more than likely. I mean, if he would smoke when your mother wasn't around, she wouldn't always take the kids with her, so he would be on drugs taking care of little boys.

[1:25:01] Thank you.

[1:25:08] Am I wrong?

[1:25:10] Yeah. Yeah, no. I mean, you're right.

[1:25:14] I can't tell you how angry that makes me. Like, there are no words. I can't even tell you the level of anger that I have about that. It's so unbelievably irresponsible. It's so incredibly dangerous. Because you don't have the reaction times, you don't have the concentration, and you can't interact with your children in a direct fashion. Like, I'm trying to figure out, okay, why is this guy so oblique? Why is he so indirect? Because you had a drug addict as a dad. So he couldn't be direct with you because he's always hiding something. And then now you grow up and it feels to me like you're always hiding something.

[1:25:53] Oh, yeah.

[1:25:56] And he lied to your mother and he lied to you. And he put you guys in danger. Parenting while high is like driving while drunk. Even if your kids don't suffer direct physical harm as a result of you being high, constantly lying to your children and having to sneak out for smokes and clear it up and you didn't smell anything, kids, or, you know, like, this is just an absolutely false and completely screwed up environment.

[1:26:30] Anger Towards Irresponsible Parenting

[1:26:30] That's, I mean, that's beyond terrible and I'm, my throat is, and chest is tight with anger. Because he knew he was an addict. And was he a religious man too?

[1:26:47] I mean, nominally. He went to church.

[1:26:53] I'm sorry, I thought your parents taught you about the Ten Commandments and so on, right?

[1:27:03] Yeah, in church. I guess I shouldn't say my parents sat me down and instructed me personally on the Ten Commandments.

[1:27:14] I'm sorry, did they have a problem with you lying and stealing?

[1:27:19] Yes.

[1:27:20] Well, where does that come from? If not, thou shalt not bear false witness, and thou shalt not steal!

[1:27:27] Sure, yeah, yeah, okay.

[1:27:30] So... Your father was bearing false witness. And your mother, I assume, was relatively attentive to the things that you did wrong.

[1:27:45] Yes.

[1:27:46] And when you stole, I'm sure that your mother was really dug in to figure out what happened and where the money went and whether you were guilty. She probably dug in quite a bit to find these facts out, right?

[1:27:57] Yeah.

[1:27:58] And she doesn't seem to have a clue that the man she's leaving her children under the care and custody of is high as a kite. It's stoned. She doesn't notice where the money's going. She doesn't notice the smell. She's like, what? So she's scanning you top to bottom like the TSA and yet your dad is sitting in a drug-sorting heap in the corner and she doesn't notice a thing? That can't be. I mean, it's like saying I have no idea whether my friend is drunk or not. What? Of course you do. You know the difference? Yeah. Wouldn't it work if he showed up bombed out of his gourd? Wouldn't you notice something?

[1:28:40] Yeah, I mean, she might have just ignored it. I mean, just to avoid conflict. I mean, I think that's probably what was going on.

[1:28:51] Okay, so why would she ignore it to avoid conflict with your dad, but then harass and bully you with all of your imagined sins.

[1:29:01] Right. It's like holding me to a higher standard than an adult when I was a child.

[1:29:06] Yeah, so your father can be stoned and in charge of you, but boy, you better not take 40 bucks, kid. Holy crap, man. That's vile. I'm holding you to account count, because you told a fib, kid. But your dad can be stoned, and I'm sure he was probably stoned and driving from time to time, right?

[1:29:35] Yeah. Probably. Yeah.

[1:29:38] So that's fine. I don't want to say anything to your dad, who's driving you stoned, but boy, you tell one fib to me, kid, it's over the knee for you. Oh my god. I'm sorry, I feel a little physically nauseous. It's just so vile. Do they want you to get married and give them grandchildren?

[1:30:14] They don't talk to me about it. They don't bring it up. I mean, it's the elephant in the room to me.

[1:30:21] Seeking Apologies from Parents

[1:30:21] How is your brother doing with regards to dating and all of that?

[1:30:26] He's doing really well. He's married. He has a six-month-old. She's a little older than that. but yeah yeah he's doing well.

[1:30:38] And does he circle back to give you a hand or is it basically the same as the 40 bucks he's.

[1:30:43] Just one of the only he's one of the only people in my life that that talks to me about about stuff like that.

[1:30:50] Right your vote your voice has gotten quite croaky and i'm a little disconcerted because this is your life and it seems like i'm the only one who's upset oh, No.

[1:31:07] I mean, I mean, I'm, I'm upset.

[1:31:14] I mean, What's your relationship like with your parents, uh, at the moment?

[1:31:25] Uh, surface level. Not, I mean, don't talk about anything important. See them a few times a month.

[1:31:37] And why don't you talk about anything important? I mean, that's your choice, right?

[1:31:46] It is, and I don't because when I've tried to do it in the past, it just hasn't led anywhere. So that's passive again, right?

[1:31:57] No, that's passive again. What do you mean it hasn't led anywhere? There's no third party that drags your relationships around. It's just you and them.

[1:32:07] Right.

[1:32:08] So where would it lead? I'm not sure what you mean.

[1:32:10] Mean it's like me saying it's like me saying i got a.

[1:32:16] Gym membership but it didn't lead anywhere.

[1:32:18] Right yeah i i mean i would like to i would like for it to lead to some kind of apology or admission that admission of wrongdoing or inadequacy as parents but it it, It doesn't. It hasn't.

[1:32:38] Okay, so...

[1:32:38] When I've tried to have... Yeah.

[1:32:40] So they won't apologize. So they punished you as a child, not endlessly, but a lot, right? For all of your misdeeds, right? And then when you point out that they have misdeeds, they don't accept any responsibility, any ownership, and won't apologize. Is that right?

[1:32:58] Basically, zero, yeah.

[1:32:59] So they're almost bottomless hypocritical bullies. So when they have power over you, they'll punish you because they're so concerned about morality and integrity and truth and honesty and virtue and godliness. But then when you point out that they've done some real wrongs to you, suddenly morality vanishes, they're not responsible for anything, and they'll never apologize, right?

[1:33:25] Right.

[1:33:27] So... That's led somewhere, hasn't it? I mean, just because it hasn't led where you want it to lead doesn't mean it hasn't led anywhere. You now have people who won't admit fault for any of the significant wrongs that they've done. So they don't take any moral responsibility while endlessly punishing you for your moral, quote, failings as a little boy. So they, as adults, can never be guilty of anything. You, as a five-year-old, as a ten-year-old, well, you've got to be punished for all of the things you just do wrong and bad. And you've got to apologize and take ownership. And that's so important.

[1:34:14] One time i i when i was probably 18 i talked to them about like about my frustration with them not really instructing on on dating and relationships and they they like very tepidly sort of apologized and said well maybe we we told you as when you were a kid so maybe Maybe we will have gotten out of them on that front. Maybe we failed you.

[1:34:45] Okay, so that's just fog, right?

[1:34:51] I'm sorry, what?

[1:34:52] That's just fog.

[1:34:55] Right, yeah.

[1:34:57] And when did your father confess about his drug addiction about your childhood?

[1:35:08] When I was 19, I want to say, we got into a conversation about it.

[1:35:14] Okay, so at 18, you say to your parents, I'm having trouble connecting with people, right? And your father knows why. Right, you have trouble connecting with people because your father was stoned throughout your childhood. It so your father knows the problem when you're saying i i really i have trouble connecting with people your father knows why and doesn't say anything.

[1:35:51] Hmm. I had never thought of that.

[1:35:54] Maybe we failed you. Well, son, one of the reasons you have trouble connecting with people is I was stoned throughout your childhood. Sorry about that.

[1:36:02] And that's how I learned to relate to people.

[1:36:05] Right. I mean, you can't have emotional contact with an addict, especially an addict who's lying to everyone.

[1:36:15] The Impact of Parental Hypocrisy

[1:36:16] Because that's a 24-7 falsehood, right?

[1:36:18] You're dishonest.

[1:36:19] Yeah, you're lying about everything, and the hypocrisy means you can't connect, because he's punishing you for misdeeds while being a secret drug addict himself, right? Which is infinitely more important than anything you ever did as a kid. So what what value are they bringing to your life if if they're just lying and misdirecting and not being honest and you still don't even know the details of your father's drug addiction and, any of that and they won't admit to any fault and other than this vaguely self-pitying and manipulative well i guess we failed you no details no facts and they were lying even then, Has your father confessed to your mother about his drug addiction?

[1:37:09] Oh, she knows. She knows it's a thing.

[1:37:12] Okay. I don't know when she found out. That's the answer to my question.

[1:37:15] Oh, did he? Yeah. Sorry.

[1:37:18] Stop misinterpreting what I'm saying.

[1:37:19] Has he confessed to her directly about it? Probably not.

[1:37:27] Okay. Okay, so he's not said, I was a drug addict throughout our kid's childhood and throughout most of our marriage.

[1:37:39] No, I seriously doubt that he's told her that. I wouldn't know if he had, but I seriously doubt it.

[1:37:45] So he's still lying, right?

[1:37:50] Yeah, but yeah.

[1:37:51] Okay, so why do you want these hypocritical liars around? Why would you be satisfied with that? Why would you spend a couple of times a month in these empty conversations avoiding any facts, truth, honesty, reality, or virtue or integrity in the whole relationship? Relationship and then you're like i don't know why i have trouble being close to people.

[1:38:15] Yeah it's a good question.

[1:38:17] Because you're in the orbit of people who aren't really there morally and are hypocritical and liars and manipulators and still lying and still manipulating and still avoiding and still not taking any responsibility, You want to bring a smart, intelligent, well-connected, and moral and empathetic woman over to your parents? Hey, here's the guy who was a drug addict and lied to me and continues to lie about it to my family over the whole course of my childhood. Oh, and here's the woman who called me sinful for breathing because she was so concerned with morality that she left me in the care, custody, and control of a drug addict. Hey, let's have some lunch, shall we? What is a woman going to say about that if she cares about you?

[1:39:11] I mean, it doesn't reflect well on me, I guess.

[1:39:15] Are you going to go with still, I guess? Have we made absolutely no progress? I'm feeling a certain amount of despair about it. It still feels like you're discussing the weather. Well, it doesn't reflect well on me, I guess. It's costing you everything, bro. It's costing you everything, and what did you not want to talk about the most when we started our call, childhood that's right and why didn't you want to talk about your childhood who didn't want you talking about your childhood my parents didn't want.

[1:39:59] Me to talk about my childhood.

[1:40:00] So you're still in the grip of their power you're still obeying them. You're still serving their selfish needs. Which is why whenever I tried to dig into any parental problems, you got all kinds of foggy and misinterpreted everything, right? Well, I can't remember exactly, blah, blah, blah, right? So you're still serving them because you're still scared of them because you're too scared. I don't mean this in any negative way. I completely understand it.

[1:40:31] I understand.

[1:40:32] Yeah, but I mean, you... you don't want to be honest with them, you're too scared to bring truth and reality to the relationship, you're too scared to disagree with them, or rather, they have implanted that fear in you, because you being scared is easier than them being honest. Are you still a religious, are you a religious man?

[1:40:59] I'm not.

[1:40:59] Consequences of Participating in Falsehoods

[1:41:00] Okay. But you understand that participating in these dissociative falsehoods is not good for your parents. I mean, I assume you care. I still care about my mother. I assume you care about your parents. So why would you want to participate in these avoidant falsehoods? I mean, that's bad for them. Bad for you, obviously, but it's bad for them. Now, they may prefer it, but so what? What? You mean your dad preferred weed? That doesn't mean it was good for him.

[1:41:28] Yeah, it's bad for them because it teaches them that people still associate with them even if they behave that way. Is that what you're saying?

[1:41:38] Confronting the Unreality

[1:41:39] It's bad for them because they live in unreality and they don't have to confront their conscience and they don't have to deal with the actual facts of what they did. So you see they're using you like your father used weed to dissociate from what they're doing and what they did they're addicted to unreality and you are enabling that addiction to unreality, your father was a drug addict and your mother was a tyrannical moral bully as far as i can i'm not saying that's all they are but as far as the stuff that impacts you and your capacity to pair bond aren't that's the most important things and if i've characterized them unfairly or incorrectly, you know please let me know but you said 99 of the fear-mongering about sin and hell came from your mother right yeah so your mother was a tyrannical moral bully and your father, was a reality falsifying hopeless drug addict i mean to be addicted to weed throughout the entire course of your children's childhood is beyond addiction almost, right? That's almost like an obsession, right?

[1:42:54] Yeah, to be fair, I don't know if it was like a daily thing or not, but yeah.

[1:43:03] And you'll never know. You'll never know.

[1:43:06] And I'll never know.

[1:43:07] Because he'll never tell the truth. And you certainly can't trust anything that he would say, right?

[1:43:13] Right.

[1:43:15] So your parents are perfectly happy pretending everything's fine, even though it's costing you your dating life. See, it's devouring parents, right? Serve our needs. Doesn't matter if you can't date, doesn't matter if you can't connect, doesn't matter if you don't like yourself, doesn't matter. Serve our needs. Lie to us, even though it disintegrates your entire fucking balls. Participate in our unreality, no matter what costs to you. That's greedy, that's destructive, exploitive.

[1:43:54] Addressing Childhood Sin Talk

[1:43:54] Wow.

[1:44:00] If you can't have a conversation with your parents about your father's drug addiction, I don't know what point there is going over other than to just waste more time. And your mother's moral bullying. Like, it's not good to tell children they're going to hell. If they put one foot wrong?

[1:44:28] To be fair, I think I got that from, I think I put that together from going to church, not from her telling me that I, as a child, was going to go to hell if I was not good enough.

[1:44:42] Okay.

[1:44:43] I think that was just something.

[1:44:44] I get that. Quick question, though, brother.

[1:44:46] I want to be.

[1:44:47] No, quick question.

[1:44:47] Yeah, what was that?

[1:44:48] I want to be fair to your mother as well. Who chose the church and brought you to the church and exposed you to the teachings? My mom. Okay. Oh, look at that. We're done, right? If your mom outsourced the you'll burn in hell stuff, that doesn't make her not responsible. And if she heard that speech, she should have sat down with you and said, listen, I don't accept that. Children, don't go to hell. I don't want you to worry too much, blah, blah, blah, right? She's responsible for what you're exposed to, right?

[1:45:23] Right.

[1:45:26] And she sure didn't contradict it. And somehow, well, so what was the 99% of the sin stuff? What was she saying? If it wasn't about hell, I mean, obviously you were there. I wasn't, so I accept that. But what was she saying?

[1:45:42] Like about punishment for sin, you mean? I'm sorry.

[1:45:46] Yeah, you said 99% of the sort of sin talk and punishment talk that was religious came from your mother, not your father. And so what was she saying that would fall into those categories, the 99%?

[1:46:03] Oh, I mean, just don't do these things because the Bible says they're bad. That basically, I mean, it's not anything particularly deep. I mean.

[1:46:19] Okay, so she would say you're sinning, according to the Bible, and she took you to a church that said sinners go to hell.

[1:46:31] Yeah and and you have to accept jesus christ into your heart to as your savior to uh to be saved.

[1:46:39] Okay got it so, if you talk to your parents about the drug addiction and then they start lying or falsifying and you say no no come on thou shalt not bear false witness you have to tell the truth and why didn't you tell the truth why didn't you get help why didn't you realize you You had an addiction. Like, why did you lie throughout my childhood and teaching me that lying is a sin, that you go to hell? Like, what would they say?

[1:47:06] What would they say if I walked in and said that to them today? Yeah. Just vague things like well that was that was a long time ago we can't change the past why are you bringing this up stuff like that okay probably so.

[1:47:34] So okay let's let's do this role play okay so.

[1:47:36] Okay so.

[1:47:37] Then they say well well, it's important to me that you and dad in particular were lying to me throughout my entire childhood and lying to mom about your drug addiction while punishing me for lying. And by the way, also punishing me for trying weed when you were a chronic addict of weed, right? That's not good. And we need to talk about it because it makes my whole childhood to feel like a lie, that you guys were punishing me for things that you were doing far worse, right? That's hypocritical, isn't it?

[1:48:21] I'm sorry I'm, I'm sorry I'm drawing this is tough.

[1:48:32] Well so they would say well but it is a long time ago right.

[1:48:37] Yeah yeah right and so so then it should be easy to talk about right because it was so long ago it doesn't matter that much so it should be easy to talk about right.

[1:48:47] Right like you if somebody's just had a car crash it's pretty traumatic and they're still in shock right if it's if it's 30 years later they should be able to talk about the car crash because it was so long ago right and and as to why i'm bringing this up what does that matter i want to talk about it it matters to me it's important to me and the fact that it is important to me should make it important to you because your parents you claim to love me and i have some complaints and they're legitimate complaints and you know when i was a kid when i stole 40 bucks and you didn't find out about it for a couple of days i didn't get to say well there's just days ago there's no need to talk about it now it's in the past right so i was never allowed the excuse of well it's a long time ago or some time ago because you know when you're a little kid a couple of days it seems like quite a while so yeah i i do want to talk about it because i think it's It's important. And I still don't know. Like, Dad, you know, I mean, exactly how often did you smoke? How did you pay for it? Did you buy it from criminals? Were you supporting drug dealers in the very town that your children grew up in? Did you drive with us high? Did you take care of us high? How did you hide it from Mom? Mom, how did you not know? Like, these are important questions. Because this drug addiction and the moral sin-go-to-hell stuff was pretty much defining my childhood, and we don't talk about it. Well, I need to talk about it.

[1:50:10] So, we're going to talk about it, or I'm getting up and walking out.

[1:50:32] And if you think that these problems in my upbringing don't have anything to do with why I'm still single, well, you're wrong. It has so much to do with why I'm still single. Growing up with a hysterically punitive mother father and a drug addict father has an effect.

[1:50:53] And we need to talk about it, because I'm not going to just hang around here and talk about the weather and sports and nonsense, because we need to, I don't, that's lying, like you. For me, avoiding these topics is lying. And, you know, boy, if there's one thing you taught me, it's not to lie. Well, I'm not lying anymore. I'm not going to participate in these lies that everything's fine and we don't have anything to talk about, out and there was never any problem. No trouble, no problems, no addiction, no you're going to hell stuff, right? So, you know, I guess I'm finally listening to your commandments to not bear false witness and to not lie because now I want us to talk about the truth. And because you punished me a lot for lying, well, you're going to talk about this now because it's the truth and we don't want to lie, right? Because lying is bad, that's what I was always told, so let's tell the truth because that's the value right, that's how you get to heaven and I don't want you guys going to hell look I'm not a strict believer myself I don't want you guys going to hell so I don't want you to bear false witness I don't want you to lie and avoid and prevaricate and dissociate and fog and pretend that everything's fine when it's not that's no good, that's breaking a foundational commandment to not bear false witness so let's have an honest conversation about my childhood that's it.

[1:52:18] Confronting Past Drug Addiction

[1:52:18] If i if i said that to them my dad would probably you'd probably just get angry really fast.

[1:52:25] Sure sure so he so you're punished you're punished for telling the truth and you're punished for lying, right okay so so he gets angry right say okay so so mister so he gets angry you say oh oh dad Dad, you're angry? You, who was a lying drug addict throughout my childhood?

[1:52:48] No, no. Sorry. Sorry. Hold on. Hold on. I'll tell you exactly what he would do. He would get angry and or he would say something about how bad his childhood was and how mine was an improvement on that.

[1:53:02] Fantastic. And then I would say, so, Dad, then you can go and have a conversation with your no, parents, I'm having this conversation with you, and this conversation is about me, not you. So let's just try and crawl out of the narcissism, dad, and focus on me. I'm right here, right here, right in front of you. So we're talking about me, not you. You were a drug addict throughout my childhood, and you lied to everyone about it continually.

[1:53:32] Well, I wasn't really an addict. I mean, it's just a little bit of weed. It's not the same thing as being addicted to coke or something.

[1:53:40] Okay. So if I say you robbed a convenience store and you say, well, that's not the same as robbing a bank, so what? Did you rob the convenience store? Did you use drugs and lie about it when I was a child?

[1:53:55] Well, I smoked a little bit of weed, but it's not the same thing as being a full-on drug addict. I was still functional. I still provided for you.

[1:54:04] Did you use drugs and lie about it? Yes or no? Did you use drugs and lie about it when I was a child?

[1:54:22] Well, I didn't want to...

[1:54:23] Yes or no, Dad, did you use drugs and lie about it when I was a child? Lie to me, lie to brother, lie to mom, lie to mom. Did you use drugs and lie to everyone about it when I was a child?

[1:54:39] I guess I lied about it sometimes, sure. But that's... I needed something to help me get through the day.

[1:54:48] So, you did use drugs and lie about it as a child. So, you lied pretty continually throughout my childhood and punished me for lying. You understand that's pretty hypocritical, right? If you're lying to mom, lying to me, lying to my brother, and then punishing me for lying? Lying about inconsequential kid stuff when you're lying about using drugs. Does that not strike you as a little bit on the hypocritical side?

[1:55:33] You know how bad I had it when I was a kid? My parents were both alcoholics. No, no, no, we're talking about me.

[1:55:38] No, we're talking about me, not you. Do you understand that for you to lie to everyone about using drugs and then punish me for lying about inconsequential kid stuff is really hypocritical.

[1:55:54] He would be in full-on, like, temper tantrum mode at that point.

[1:55:59] Okay. So then I would say, Dad, if you abuse me, I'm getting up and walking out. And do not cross your fingers and hope about when I'm coming back. I will not put up with it. You will not yell at me. You will not intimidate me. You will not raise your voice. You will not threaten me. You can storm out. You can do whatever you want. I'm just telling you the consequences of abusing me will be I get up, I walk the fuck out, and do not hold your breath for when I'm coming back.

[1:56:32] I will not be yelled at, for asking questions about my childhood.

[1:56:40] I have the right to do that. You were my parents. I have the right to ask questions about my childhood and point out some hypocrisies. Because you guys spent a lot of my childhood pointing out where I had done wrong and gone wrong. Okay, so I'm pointing it out now. And if you are the kind of people who can only bully children, but can't be even asked basic questions as an adult, I can't tell you how little respect I will have for you. That you're fine bullying children, but when your children grow up and ask you some tough questions, you start having temper tantrums like you're some toddler. Like, are you kidding me?

[1:57:12] Standing up to Bullying Parents

[1:57:13] How pathetic is that, that you bully children and can't handle any difficult questions when they grow up? That makes me so humiliated that you just pushed me around and bullied me and yelled at me and punished me and spanked me and all of that because you know it's really important to be tough in pursuit of virtue gotta be tough and then what you have some toddler tantrum when i'm asking you some tough questions as an adult i mean are you kidding me that's just you're just pathetic people who bully children if that's the case so sit the hell down and let's have a conversation.

[1:58:03] Yeah, he would be really pissed, and my mom would be trying to defuse the situation.

[1:58:09] I'd say to mom, mom, did you know that he was using drugs throughout my childhood?

[1:58:25] I don't know what she'd say. I mean, I don't know when she found out.

[1:58:29] If she said, no, I had no idea, then be like, well, how dissociated with you that you didn't even know that your husband was stoned or not? Like, come on. And then if she admitted any kind of suspected, blah, blah, blah, it's like, okay, well, did you leave the house knowing that you had a drug addict on your hands? Did you leave the house and leave us in his care? Well, yes. Okay. So then you put us in significant danger. I mean, there was some random danger in that he could have been inattentive if we fell or hurt ourselves or whatever, right? Or, you know, one of the reasons you need to stay sober when you're parenting is your kids can hurt themselves and they need to be driven to the hospital. And you can't be drunk or stoned or anything like that, right? And even if it wasn't anything that direct, the indirect thing is you putting somebody who's high on drugs in charge of children, which is very bad for the children's psychological and emotional development, right?

[1:59:23] Right.

[1:59:25] So. They've got some things to answer for. And if they can't handle any tough questions, then I'm afraid, my friend, they were just bullies. They were just bullies who can dish it out to children, but can't take it. They were bullies who punished children, for completely minor misdeeds, and then their major flaws as parenting, they can't take any criticism at all. They're just petty bullies in that case.

[1:59:53] The Price of Avoiding Truth

[1:59:53] And, I mean, it's your life, right? It's your life. life but just know that there's a huge price to be paid in your soul your heart or your capacity to pair bond if you just run around appeasing petty bullies because you're frightened to be honest, and i get the fear i'm not i mean the fear is real and i'm not you know it's not cowardly to have the fear at all and it's a big fear and i understand it kind of goes against our programming too but you know you've listened to this show for close to half a decade so you know this thing that that if you lie to your parents, you can't tell the truth to anyone.

[2:00:30] Yeah.

[2:00:38] And you have as a disaster scenario, you have as a disaster scenario, what if they blow up and they attack me and they're petty and immature and storm out and this and that and the other is like, well, then you've just, you got your answer. But these are people who will never, ever allow you to tell the truth to them. And they will punish you for any honesty and authenticity and directness with them. Okay, but then you can make your choice. But at least get the facts, right? You're just avoiding the facts, right? Like your father was avoiding whatever he was dealing with. Whatever your father was dealing with, he was avoiding with weed. And what's going on in your life, you're avoiding with compliance, right? It's still an addiction, right? It's an addiction to compliance and falsification, lying. Your father was lying about his drug abuse, and your drug abuse is lying in a way. And I have sympathy for all of that. i'm sorry i.

[2:01:37] Was gonna ask you something when you say compliance you're you mean both compliance with them like in my relationship with my parents and also just compliance with, the behaviors they taught me in my relationships with other people as well is that is that what you're saying i don't.

[2:01:53] Know the second category but compliance is okay is it will it be a benefit to you to have an honest conversation with your parents about your childhood?

[2:02:04] It would be, yes.

[2:02:06] Okay, so it would be of benefit to you. Do your parents want you to do that? Do they want you to bring these topics up?

[2:02:12] No.

[2:02:13] No. So then you are complying with your parents' avoidance rather than that which is beneficial to you, which is beta and weak and sensed by women. That you will comply to bullies rather than be honest. That you will be pushed around and minimized and evaporated and dismissed and avoided. And you will go along with that rather than make bullies uncomfortable. Women will never feel safe with a guy like that. Because some bully is going to come along who's going to step into your parents' role and push you around too.

[2:02:58] Like I think the woman that you're looking for needs a strong man, and if you are at the age of 30 still being bullied by your parents and complying with their dysfunction you're not going to be perceived as a strong man, but you don't want a woman who's attracted to a weak man because then she's going to bully you too and so So you're stuck, right? You can't get the strong woman because she's going to perceive you as weak and you don't want the weak woman because you don't want to be bullied. Or to put it another way, a woman who values your weakness would value it because she can push you around and you don't want that. A woman who does not value your weakness will not be attracted to you because you're still complying with your parents' bullying. So you got no one.

[2:03:51] And you can either say I'm going to be a guy who's going to be pushed around forever so I'll just choose some woman who's going to bully me like my parents but you don't want that right so then you've got to find, a strong woman but a strong woman is going to smell this you know subservience and compliance and weakness now it's one thing if you're 18, 19, 20 or your parents are still paying for university but you're 30 years old, When do you stand up for your life, for what's actually happened to you? When do you give yourself permission to tell the truth? Like, I'm sorry if telling the truth annoys the drug addict dad or the morally bullying mom. Oh, gee, that's so bad. That's so terrible. I'm sorry. But maybe they shouldn't have been, I don't know, a drug addict and a morally bullying mom. Maybe that's the answer. But you complying is fine, I guess. It just means you can't date.

[2:04:50] Sorry, what was the last thing you said?

[2:04:52] You complying is fine. I can't tell you what to do. I'm just giving you costs and benefits. I get that there are benefits to complying with your parents, but the cost is you can't date. Because women sense that. Compliance to bullies within you, and they don't want that. It's not safe to be vulnerable and have kids and be dependent upon a man who can be bullied at the age of 30 by mommy and daddy yeah.

[2:05:22] They don't they don't bully me present day.

[2:05:26] They do no they absolutely do come on man come on of course they do otherwise why otherwise why are you lying about everything why are you conforming with this empty conversation this nothing burger this nonsense this avoidance why would you comply with that when you've got serious and important questions about your childhood of course they're bullying you, Because in the role play, what did your dad do when I started being honest?

[2:05:52] Just evade.

[2:05:54] Recognizing Parental Bullying

[2:05:54] No, what did he do? Get angry. Yeah, he bullied. Get angry. He jumped up, he got angry, he escalated, right?

[2:06:01] So he's bullying you.

[2:06:14] I mean come on man if you suddenly found out there was some objective way to if you suddenly found out that I'd been a weed addict throughout my daughter's entire childhood what would happen to your respect for me.

[2:06:28] It would drop significantly.

[2:06:31] Yeah, You know, relationships are infectious. If you don't want your parents' marriage, hanging around your parents and avoiding the truth means that, what are you going to date for? If your parents' marriage is good, then, yeah, hang around with them. If it's bad, and it is bad, given how the parenting went and given how distant they were, that one was a drug addict, the other claims to not even know, that's pretty bad, right? Then what are you hanging around a marriage for where you can't be honest and it's not a marriage that you want and it's a marriage you'd probably, if you woke up in your father's position or your mother's position, you'd consider it, you'd already died and gone to hell, right?

[2:07:34] Yeah um, i don't know i i don't want to cut them out of my life completely but i'm did.

[2:07:45] I say anything yeah i mean hang on hang on hang on no no see you got to stay in this conversation because this is why you get ghosted this is absolutely why you get ghosted because you're having some fucking conversation with yourself that barely involves me did i say anything about that.

[2:08:02] No no you didn't.

[2:08:05] Now if you are concerned that if you're honest with them they're going to act in such an ugly and abusive fashion that you don't want them around okay that's one thing, but you you don't cut people out of your life that's not how it works you're not just some arbitrary guy like stalin sending people to concentration camps right you're honest with people, and if they attack you for being honest, it becomes unbearable after a while, and you have that choice, that you can either shut up and pretend you never said anything and go back to being meek little armadillo guy, or you can continue to tell the truth and hope that they are just, and if they continue to attack you and berate you and abuse you for telling the truth, then at some point it just might be unbearable, like you just don't want to talk to them anymore. Right? That's not like a choice, like, oh, I was cutting people out of my life.

[2:08:54] I see what you're saying.

[2:08:56] Like you're just honest with people and if they abuse you for being honest at some point it may become unbearable it probably will be right but that's on them.

[2:09:12] Yeah yeah i i just jumped to that for some reason i'm sorry uh.

[2:09:15] Well no that's the threat yeah so you're so you're so used to being threatened that the way that you manage yourself is through threats well if i if i'm honest then i'm just gonna i'm cutting them out of my life well that's not that's that's unacceptable so i guess i won't be honest right that's not having any commitment to honor that's just scaring yourself with bullying consequences consequences, like your mom going to hell or the priest or whoever, right?

[2:09:43] Yeah.

[2:09:45] Yeah, don't bully yourself.

[2:09:46] Man.

[2:09:47] You have a commitment to honesty and you see what happens, right? Maybe they'll respond positively. Maybe it'll be a huge breakthrough. Maybe there'll be wonderful things. You're in therapy, so you can have a therapist help you manage that. Or you can, you know, get back to the therapist if you're not currently in therapy. So you can do all of these, but you just have a commitment to honesty, right? Because women can not only sense that you're being bullied, women can sense that you don't have a commitment to honesty. And no woman wants to get involved with a guy, no woman of quality wants to get involved with a guy who doesn't have a commitment to honesty.

[2:10:26] Right.

[2:10:30] Because he can't be trusted.

[2:10:33] Yeah, I see what you're saying.

[2:10:39] And I mean this can't be surprising to you I mean obviously I've had a commitment to honesty damn the consequences right.

[2:10:46] Yeah yeah so.

[2:10:48] You know you're going to get that advice from me and that's why you called right, yeah.

[2:11:00] Because there's no way to be proud of yourself without a commitment to honesty, and if you're proud of yourself genuinely like self-respect based upon a commitment to honesty despite the fact that it's tough in the world to be honest and particularly in your situation, then you have great pride in yourself you're proud honestly i i mean i take delight in myself i enjoy being in my own brain it's a wonderful great place to be and part of that pride comes from, like, I've told the truth, and I've obviously been beaten all up and down the alley for telling the truth, but I stuck with it, and I never disavowed anything that I knew to be true, and I kind of gritted my teeth and I hung in there. This is true in my personal relationships, it's true in my sort of public life and so on. So I, you know, I can't do better than that. That's the best that I can do, and I have pride in what I did.

[2:11:55] Pride in Honesty

[2:11:56] And this was, of course, you know, 25 years ago when I confronted my parents, I'm actually a little older than you. When I confronted my parents and told them the truth and asked questions and cross-examined them in a sense, it was not fun. It was not fun. I did it a couple of times and it got worse each time. And then I was like, I don't want to do this anymore, but I'm also not going to go back to lying. I can't go back to lying. It's too weird to go back to lying because now I've told the truth, right?

[2:12:24] Right.

[2:12:27] So then there's just pride in that. Like, yeah, I told the truth. I told the truth, I was honest, and, you know, my parents messed it up, and that's on them, not on me. And there's just a great deal of pride in that, and honor, right? I mean, the guy who runs away from a battle is not considered particularly honorable. A guy who stands and fights, even if the odds seem overwhelming, is considered heroic, right? So how do you become a hero? Well, we don't have dragons to fight, but we can at least tell the truth to people in our lives we can take that battle on and and emerge victorious and you can't lose once you tell the truth you can't lose you keep thinking there's an outcome that conditions whether it's worth telling the truth or not but you you tell the truth you can't lose i i my only choice was to tell the truth and then watch my parents do what they did or to just continue to lie to everyone about everything all the time and never be real and never be honest and never be direct and you know that had such a ripple effect on my relationships i was like or lack of relationships really i was like oh god because the only person you're close to is the walking wounded guy at work right but you want to start getting close to people who are strong and confident right right.

[2:13:45] Yeah i hadn't i hadn't noticed that just connect with people over over negative, over negative emotions basically.

[2:13:53] Right and you know i mean it's nice what you're doing for the the guy i'm sure it's helpful and so on and there's nothing wrong with it but it's.

[2:14:00] Not it's not all like that we have it's yeah that's just one thing but.

[2:14:04] Right so yeah i mean i think i think that's your that's your cross to bear that's your bridge to cross is to be honest with your family, again it's a choice i'm not telling you to do it i'm just saying that there's there's costs and benefits too uh i want to make the costs and benefits clear right yeah yeah, It's like all these people who say, well, of course, you've got to buy a house because your rent, you're just throwing your money away. It's like, okay, well, what if you had taken the down payment on a house and put it into Bitcoin in 2013? Would that have been, would it have been smart to rent then? Now you can buy 50 houses, right? So I just want to point out the sort of costs and benefits that there's a huge price to be paid for falsifying your entire existence in your primary relationships.

[2:15:01] Okay. Yeah, I see that.

[2:15:08] Because then you think to be close to people you have to not be yourself and not be honest and not be direct so you end up talking about poker.

[2:15:20] Yeah just surface level stuff yeah.

[2:15:22] The way the way i hang around people is, falsify surface level nonsense and that's that's not going to be attractive because Because women need a very deep connection in order to really trust a guy and commit and surrender. I mean, she's going to surrender her life, her womb, her attractiveness, her figure, her, right? All's going to go up in the flame of her passion for the guy, right?

[2:15:49] Right. All right.

[2:15:53] How are we doing? Good.

[2:15:57] Yeah, that's very useful. I think I'm going to have to have a conversation with them at some point coming up.

[2:16:07] At some point is vague as well.

[2:16:11] Yeah.

[2:16:12] I'm not saying you have to determine a date right now, but at some point it's going to end up with procrastination and delay.

[2:16:16] The Cost of Procrastination

[2:16:17] And, you know, here's the thing, man, every day you delay becoming real and honest in your life is the day that the woman of your dreams might walk by. You don't have forever. You're 30 years old. Right? So every day, like there's a woman on a conveyor belt who's the perfect woman for you. Maybe there's more than one. And every day you delay, could be delay, she passes by. There's a price to procrastination as well. Because if you throw things in the bucket of soon, it almost inevitably becomes never. So, again, I would suggest a deadline.

[2:17:10] That's a good idea. I think you're right about the procrastination.

[2:17:17] All right, man. Well, listen, I hope you'll keep me posted about how it's going, and I really, really do appreciate the call today. It's a great job, and I really do appreciate you taking the coaching you did. Did wonderfully with that.

[2:17:29] Thanks, Steph. I appreciate your time. I'll let you know.

[2:17:32] Yeah, keep me posted, and I certainly wish you the very best. And do say hi to your brother for me and tell him congratulations on his baby.

[2:17:39] Thanks. Will do.

[2:17:40] Thanks, man. Bye.

[2:17:42] Bye.

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