Mom Abandoned Me! Freedomain Call In - Transcript

Gratitude and Career Crossroads

[0:00] Hey, Steph, can you hear me?

[0:02] I certainly can. How are you doing?

[0:04] Excellent. Doing well. How about yourself?

[0:06] I'm well, I'm well. Glad we could work out a time today. And I'm here, so do you want to read your email or do you want to just remind me or tell me what's going on?

[0:15] Yeah, sure. Well, before we get started, I just wanted to thank you for all the work you've done and allowing me to kind of get where I am in life.
I know I did it all on myself, but you've kind of allowed me to forge my own path.
So I just wanted to say some gratitude before we start.

[0:33] I appreciate that. Thank you.

[0:36] Yeah. All right. I'll just be off my quest here. So, yeah.
Hello, Stefan. I'm currently at a crossroads in my career and I'm considering changing professions.
My wife recently became, and I'm having conflicting thoughts about whether or not this is a good time for a career change.

[0:58] Sorry, you just cut out for a second there. Your wife recently became what?

[1:01] She became pregnant.
Um, and I'm having conflicting thoughts about whether or not this is a good time for a career change, or is it better for me to wait for a few years before pursuing a new field and spend more time with our future baby?
Uh, thank you for reading.

[1:23] Okay. Um, do you want to tell me a little bit about the careers, the, where you're coming from, where you're going to all that?

[1:30] Yeah, sure. Yeah. Yeah, so I've been in the current field that I'm in for about 10 years now and started out in the military.
I was in the Navy for about four years.

[1:50] Then I kind of progressed using my skills and experience from that.
and uh i've been kind of working in the same general field of uh technician work um and kind of in the um in the maintenance field so you know i'm kind of looking at the long term here and i just uh i don't know something tells me that at some point i'm gonna have to switch careers, uh because you know um it's it's hard on the body it's long hours you know i've kind of done my time So now I'm just wondering, you know, do I keep doing this maybe in a more like a consultant role, something not as heavy duty as being out there in the field and obviously having more time with my family?
Or do I just completely switch it up and go, I don't know, work in sales or something?
thing um i've got a i just did an interview with a uh a company i wanted to kind of get your thoughts on um i had a fairly extensive interview with them it was about two hours long.

[3:05] And this is my third round uh you know they're willing to uh offer me a job but i'm just kind of hesitant because it's so different than what i'm used to,

Military Background and Job Transition

[3:19] All right.

[3:20] And tell me a little bit about your marriage.

[3:23] Yeah, I've been married to my wife for two and a half years now.
We met back in late 2017 after I got out of the Navy.
Started dating, and about three years later, I proposed to her.
So I know I took too long proposing to her.

[3:52] It worked for her, I guess, right?

[3:54] Yeah, I mean, you know, yeah, it worked for her.
And I realized I could have been faster on the gun.
And, you know, I was still, I would say, waking up in that time.

[4:11] You're just taking the military principle of hurry up and wait, right?

[4:16] Yeah, too true, too true. True. Yeah.
So, I mean, we've been we've been married or we've been together for five years coming up in our six year anniversary later on this year. And what else?
Yeah, I mean, we wanted to have kids.
However, we couldn't do it where we were living at the time because we were living in a city on the coast, and housing is ridiculously expensive, as I'm sure you're aware.
So we looked around.
I did my research on states that had a lower cost of living.
I applied to a few jobs here and there, and I got a job at a lower-cost living state.
We moved there and got a house, and it's been about a year now.
So I recently found out that, yeah. Oh, yeah.
So we moved states and we got a house.
And a year after we got a house, we found out that my wife's pregnant.
Well, I mean, not found out, we planned it.

[5:42] Well, congratulations on all of that. That's wonderful. That's wonderful.
Is there anything else you wanted to add? it.

[5:48] Um not as as of now no.

[5:54] And what are you hoping to get out of the conversation with me i just want to make sure that it fits what it is that i'm going to talk about yeah.

[6:08] Certainly so just some Some life advice, and I know you don't, so I'm not looking for that.
Just some guiding principles about that as far as if it is really the right time for me to make a career change or to just stick it out for the next two, three years and spend more time with the baby.

[6:42] I'm trying to say i mean i want to help obviously i was i was originally not going to take the call not because i have any hostility to the subject it doesn't strike me as particularly philosophical if that makes sense sure but nonetheless you know i i want to help so in terms of the principles uh you don't mean do you mean moral principles or what sort of principles are you looking for Well.

[7:09] Principles as far as, I guess, is it better to, how do I say this?
Sorry, I feel like I'm just going to repeat myself if I say what I'm going to say.

[7:26] No, no, go ahead and repeat. Maybe I'm not getting it through my head either.
So whatever you need to do to get it through, please help.

[7:33] Sure. Yeah, so I mean like, you know, right now I'm working a fairly easy job.
I make good money.
The hours are kind of long. um i don't quite like the the day-to-day stuff it's a bit of uh i don't know well.

[7:56] You can tell me a little bit about the field just so it's not too abstract.

[7:58] Oh sure yeah it's uh uh manufacturing, um so i work at a factory uh working on machines making sure they're you know running in their their tip-top shape um yeah so i do a lot of technical work so industrial mechanic that.

[8:19] Kind of thing yeah.

[8:20] Exactly industrial mechanic yeah and how how long have you been.

[8:23] Doing that for.

[8:25] Well uh, it kind of varies i would say but i think overall 10 years um so i started out in the navy And I kind of did jobs that are similar to that, but not, Quite. I mean, industrial mechanic would be like the umbrella.
And then there's certain categories under that umbrella that I worked under, if that makes any sense.

[8:53] Yeah. Okay. I got it. I mean, there's been some variety, but there's been a lot of similar stuff, right? Right.

[8:58] Yeah. I mean, I worked for a company where I was a service technician and, you know, I drove around the state I was living in going to different customer sites.
So I saw something new every day and, you know, I really liked interacting with the customers and, you know, solving their problems.
I mean, it's a very empirical job, you know, you do the right thing and the problem solved and there it is.

[9:25] Yeah. And it's objective, which is nice. Now, you're thinking of moving into more people-based work like sales and so on?

[9:34] Yeah, exactly. So I applied to this job, and the role is for a financial advisor. Really?

[9:44] Okay. Don't you have to be accredited? I mean, how does that work in terms of education?

[9:50] No, no. Oh, you know, the only requirement education-wise that you have to do is just a state license to practice. That's really it.

[10:03] Oh, so do you have that yet?

[10:06] Well, you have to get it on the job. From what I've been told in the interviews I've performed with this company, they give you a bunch of books.
They give you training lessons, whether or not it's PowerPoint or you do it on your own.
But yeah, you have to take a test. It's a state-sanctioned test to practice the financial side of things. But yeah, no degree required.

[10:33] They don't require you to have that. It's like if you want to get a job as a doctor, they don't say learn on the job, right?

[10:41] Yeah, I would hope not.
Or maybe not these days. No, actually, yeah. They don't, no real requirements.
And I guess the caveat is that it's a 1099.
It's a contractor job. So you're not getting a W-2 or anything out of it.
Sorry, does that make sense? I don't know if they have that in Canada.

[11:06] I'm not an expert in this field, but something seems, I mean, I assume you've looked into the company and they're legit and all that.

[11:13] Yeah yeah absolutely i mean they got branches all over the states um pretty big to me that.

[11:19] They'd say we'll hire a mechanic and just take this test and you could be a financial.

[11:24] Advisor yeah i know it sounds crazy right um well well that's the thing you know they're they're not looking for someone without they're not really looking at your skills and your background it's It's more like, you know, what have you learned from your previous jobs?
And what are the principles from those jobs that you can apply to a different role?

[11:55] Do you feel comfortable giving people financial advice having only taken a course?

Family History and Abandonment Themes

[12:03] I mean, it's people's life savings, isn't it?

[12:05] Yes, yes. Yes, and that's why I was like, you know, like, this is pretty big deal, you know, it's not just fix this thing and then go home and that's it.
It's very involved with somebody's personal finances.
So, yeah, I mean, as far as their training program… No.

[12:26] No, sorry, that's not what I asked. I said, do you feel comfortable giving someone financial advice about their life savings if you've been a mechanic for 10 years?

[12:37] Well, I certainly hope my finances are in order, which they are.
But I think if I was to receive the proper knowledge and to sort of get to know the person, then yeah, I would feel comfortable with it.
Because it goes through a process.

[12:59] Let me ask you this. If you had someone join you on the factory floor fixing machinery, and it turns out they've been a financial advisor in the past and had no experience fixing machinery, and your boss said, you know, this guy's going to take a course, just train him on the job, what would you think?

[13:22] Well, when you put it that way, it's pretty crystal clear.

[13:27] No I'm explaining it like what would you think.

[13:31] I think he's nuts.

[13:34] Why? He's going to take a course.

[13:37] Yeah, he's state certified, right? That's all it takes is just a little piece of paper from the state government, and yeah, you're good to go.
Okay, well, yeah.

[13:52] I mean, financial advice seems, I mean, it's quite complicated, even at the best of times.
I would imagine, like, I don't know, in the 1950s or whatever, it would be pretty complicated. But now you've got crypto, you've got AI, you've got the rise of the robots.
It's so complicated to try and figure out what to invest in.
It just seems like it's more than a state checkbox, you know?

[14:16] Yeah. And I mean, they do offer other services like insurance is kind of like their bread and butter, which is kind of where you start out, you know, kind of start selling out insurance.
And then as you get more experience… Now.

[14:32] Insurance makes a lot more sense to me. I mean, not that I'm an expert, but insurance makes a lot more sense to me because that's a fixed product based upon particular risks. Right.

[14:42] And that's how they start out the new people that have been there for, you know, zero to three years. You're basically selling insurance.

[14:49] Okay, so you're starting out insurance. And then once you get more experience with people's finances, and I assume more training, you can start to ease into financial advice. Is that right?

[14:58] Yes, that's kind of okay.

[14:59] That makes a lot more sense to me that that first one where it's like, hey, you have a million dollars.
I fixed widgets, give it to me. I will make it bigger. that seemed a bit odd but okay I sort of understand so you're trying to moving into the financial world through insurance right?

[15:15] And what kind of interested me in this role is that they are very focused towards the more entrepreneurial side of things.
So when I went in for my interview last week, I talked to the branch manager there.
He told me about some stories about other guys that are part of the team.

Entrepreneurial Opportunities and Self-Discovery

[15:40] team um it seems like it's kind of like a um you can you can make it whatever you want it to be you know he told me the story of a guy who uh you know started out just like anybody else selling insurance and then you know five years later he's got his own uh llc but while still underemployed this this company and uh you know selling being being his own financial advisor in a whole, different part of the town so um and a couple other guys kind of the same story where they, um they through working with each other they were able to figure out hey i'm good at this you're good at that let's form a joint uh venture and start our own business while still being under this company that i'm applying for so yeah i mean people.

[16:37] Who want you to join their organization are always going to sell you the success stories i get all of that.

[16:41] But um.

[16:42] But yeah just just be aware and be alert that that sometimes people can uh um can can a little oversell.

[16:49] Right and i thought thought about that too. Maybe he's just marketing these success stories to me and putting stars in my eyes and not really letting me see.

[16:59] Let me understand something. I'm trying to zoom out, get the bigger picture here. I appreciate the update. It's super helpful. Now, So you've been doing this for 10 years, and you wait until your wife gets pregnant in order to change careers?

[17:24] Yes.

[17:27] Help me understand that.

[17:28] But I've already, well, I mean, I already made a move, you know, from the previous state I was in to this new state that we're in.

[17:40] No, but that's a physical move. I understand that.
I just think you take a long time to propose to your girlfriend. Fine, right?
But then you're like, I'm doing 10 years. Oh, you're pregnant.
I'm going to switch careers.

[17:57] Yeah. yeah that uh not great timing well i'm.

[18:05] Just i guess i'm curious about when you were a kid did you feel like you had much control over your environment.

[18:13] Ah yes yes now let's see, i don't think so no why not i don't think so uh well i was uh i guess we'll get into that to the the childhood stuff yeah so yeah i mean i was um i was raised by a single mom and uh, and we you know moved around uh so yeah i guess i didn't really feel that much in control because, was i even allowed to to go out and do the things i wanted to do Well.

[18:54] It's just where you're allowed to make plans and follow through on them and like big plans or wide plans or long plans or whatever No.

[19:04] I don't think so Sorry.

[19:06] What do you mean you don't think so?

[19:08] I don't think I was really involved in any kind of decision making It was just, hey, we're doing this now So, yeah, that's it.

[19:19] Why did you move so much?

[19:22] Oh, well, I should probably go back to the origin story here.
I wasn't born in the States. I was born in a different country in the, let's just say, the Far East.
and uh yeah i moved here uh to the states uh when i was about nine years old and, yeah we moved to the we moved to a state that i lived in for about 20 years, and there i moved around uh maybe five times total Sorry.

[20:08] You moved around or you were moved around? You mean when you were a kid?

[20:13] Yeah, I was moved around.

[20:14] Yeah, kids don't move. They just get dragged along. Right, exactly. Kids don't move, right?
It's like me tying someone to the back of a camel, whipping it off into the desert, and they're not going for a ride.
They're just hanging on, right? So why did your mom move so much?

[20:32] Well, let's see. so she married an american guy and brought me along with her to the states sorry so.

[20:46] The american guy is not your dad.

[20:48] No he's my stepdad well and what happened anymore well my parents got divorced when I was, I believe, three.
I actually asked my mom about this, maybe about, a decade or so ago about and i know i'm late i guess there's a theme here i'm always late uh i asked her why is it that you know you guys divorced when i was so young and, what my mom told me was that she found that she found out that my dad was cheating on her and so they they got divorced and.

[21:34] Did she say why he was cheating on her.

[21:36] No i uh i didn't go into the details it's.

[21:42] Kind of an important detail isn't it.

[21:44] It is yeah.

[21:46] Did you have any relationship with your dad at all.

[21:49] I mean so since he left yeah so the only real relationship we had was just over uh texting mostly and there's a language barrier uh because Because I, so English isn't my native language. It's something else.

[22:17] If you don't, it's so long ago, I don't think it matters. Just if you can tell me the country that you're from.

[22:23] Yeah, Russia.

[22:24] Russia, okay, got it.

[22:26] Yeah.

[22:27] That's not where my mind went to when I thought of Far East, but it's my own ridiculous prejudice, so I apologize for that. Okay. Oh, no, no, no.

[22:34] Because I was born in Russia, but I was born on the Far East, like close to Japan.

[22:40] Like Vladivostok territory?

[22:41] Yeah, yeah, that's right.

[22:45] Okay, got it, got it.

[22:46] Close to the Chinese border there, yeah.
So let's see. So yeah, there's a bit of a language barrier. He did reach out to me.

[22:55] Your mother's Russian, your father's Russian. They split up, and then she moved to the States?

[22:59] Well, she met an American guy while she was in Russia, and then they got together.
She left me to go to the States with him for about a year. What?

[23:16] Who took care of you?

[23:18] My grandparents.

[23:21] Okay. How old were you?

[23:24] I believe I was eight at the time.

[23:26] Your mother left you for a year?

[23:30] Yeah.

[23:32] To chase some guy?

[23:37] Yes, exactly.

[23:38] And was she gone for like a year? Did she come back?

[23:42] Oh yeah i believe she was gone for a whole year um yeah yeah oh i'm so.

[23:51] Sorry that's that's terrible.

[23:55] Well there's there's i can't believe she would accuse your.

[23:58] Father of disloyalty to the family.

[24:02] Yeah hold up a mirror to that face and uh see what happens yeah totally okay.

[24:08] So she went for For a year, and then she came back, and she took you back to the States? She took you to the States for the first time?

[24:16] For the first time.

[24:19] And you like came off the boat, didn't know the language or had you studied that before?

[24:22] Oh, no, no, no. I had a tutor teach me English before I came to the States.
So I believe my grandparents saved up some money for a private tutor while I was still living in Russia.
And that's where I learned the language.
And that's why I never developed an accent.
So that's kind of the story.

[24:48] Did you lose your Russian?

[24:50] Well, I still can't speak it, but it's kind of like Spanglish.
You know, I can form a sentence, but every now and again, I'll have to substitute a word in English.

[25:04] Got it. Got it. Okay.

[25:06] And as far as reading and writing, it's there. I could do it, but I probably read and write at an elementary level.

[25:16] And when you were in Russia from the age of three to five, sorry, three to eight or nine, did you have a relationship with your father? Was he local?

[25:26] Uh no i didn't meet yeah i never i never actually talked to my dad yeah i just realized that well i mean uh i mean i don't know if you can call baby talk talking to him but yeah i don't remember ever talking to him or ever having a conversation with him was he local uh i mean he was from the area he was from the city that uh yeah he was local i.

[25:57] Mean he wasn't in thailand or something so he was low.

[25:59] Yeah but.

[26:00] You you had no relationship with him even though he was local.

[26:03] Correct oh.

[26:06] God that's terrible there's two very selfish people it seems to me.

[26:09] Yeah there's that little chuckle.

[26:14] Right if i'm wrong right you can tell me uh but if i'm right the chuckling is a bit disconcerting.

[26:23] Yeah, well, I'm just thinking of these themes that have been coming up throughout my life.

Reflections on Relationship Dynamics

[26:28] And now that you're talking about it, I can see these themes more clearly, which is why I'm doing that.

[26:38] Yeah, except seeing, like, this is kind of disastrous stuff, isn't it? So that's why the chuckle's a little disconcerting.

[26:46] It's pretty bad.

[26:48] You know, it's kind of like shock bit off my leg. Ha ha ha.

[26:52] Yeah, there goes my leg. Yeah, not so funny.

[26:59] So then you had a stepdad. He's gone now, is that right?

[27:03] Yeah, they've since divorced. I think their marriage lasted two years.

[27:09] Oh, my God. So she abandoned you for a year to chase a guy she only stayed married with for two years?

[27:18] Yep.

[27:19] Okay, so your mother has the common sense of your average hamster. Do I have this correct?

[27:25] Yeah, and she smells of elderberry.

[27:27] Yeah, something like.
And so I guess 10 or 11, the stepdad is out of the picture, and what happens then?

[27:38] Let's see. So he's out. We're living in an apartment complex.

[27:48] Didn't she have to go back? I mean, it's pretty hard to get citizenship in the States, isn't it?

[27:54] Well, it was for me. Let me tell you that.
It took me about eight years to get my naturalization.
And for her, it took longer. But I don't remember the details of why she didn't come back to Russia.
I mean, she was working at the time.

[28:17] Yeah, but it's hard to work at the States, isn't it?

[28:22] I don't know. Maybe there's, I'm not sure. I'm not sure why.

[28:27] I mean, was she legit, do you think?

[28:31] Legit in what sense?

[28:33] Like legal.

[28:34] Oh, yeah. Yeah, she was here legally.

[28:37] Okay. All right. So anyway, so and how was the, I guess they divorced, which means they weren't getting along well for quite a while before that. Is that right?

[28:46] Yeah, yeah, you know, I recall most, if not all weekends, she would go out at like eight o'clock at night and not come back until well past midnight.

[29:04] Sorry, when she was married?

[29:07] Yeah.

[29:08] Oh, so she's either flirting or cheating, right?

[29:11] Yeah. Yeah.

[29:16] Okay, so then he divorces her, is that right? Or they split up?

[29:20] Yeah, they split up.

[29:22] And what happens then?

[29:25] So, yeah, we were living in an apartment complex, and we were living on, let's just say, the east side of the complex.
Then the divorce happens, then we move to the west side of the complex, and it's just me and my mom now.

[29:43] Okay no i didn't mean the living arrangements i mean what happens did your mom remarry or did she date or how did that go.

[29:49] Oh yeah she remarried um.

[29:52] Why is she very pretty i mean is she the russian stereotype of very attractive and pretty high maintenance yep.

[30:02] Very very Very stereotypical Russian woman.
I mean, I remember – Sorry.

[30:10] Go ahead.

[30:10] Yeah, yeah. She had a black and white photo of herself doing a little pose.
It was just from the neck up.
It was a picture we had in the apartment that we lived in.
I mean, yeah, she was – I remember all the kids at the elementary school and middle school and high school, they're always making comments about my mom and how attractive she was.
So, yeah, she was a typical Russian attractive woman.

[30:46] And did you inherit the looks?

[30:51] I'd say so.

[30:53] Okay, so you're a good-looking guy. All right. Right. So she remarries and how long did that last? Or maybe it has lasted.

[31:00] Yeah. Yeah. So she remarried back in, let's see, 2020 and she's still married at this time.

[31:13] Oh, she made it four years. All right.

[31:15] Yeah.

[31:16] Or three and change. Okay. Okay.
So, I guess for a long time there, she was single?

[31:23] Yep, single. I remember some of her boyfriends.
And, you know, through listening to your show, I realized how much danger I was put into by having these strange men around me.
But thankfully, nothing ever happened.

[31:45] And what was she like as a mother in terms of discipline or guidance or engagement?

[31:49] Uh, zero. Nothing.
Listen, I've known her my entire life. I'm in my, uh, let's see.
I'm in my, uh, uh, thirties.
And I don't think I've ever had a single conversation with her about life and how to live and any of that.
never never has it ever come up to have a you know conversation of significance uh what.

[32:23] Do you talk about.

[32:24] Just bullshit you know we got a dog i always talk about the dog the weather um talking about the dog would oh i mean how much is there to talk about.

[32:35] About a dog.

[32:37] Well you'd be surprised.

[32:41] I'd probably be saddened but alright.

[32:43] Yeah it's it's pretty pretty mindless stuff did she give.

[32:50] You any guidance at all or any ideas on how to live or anything.

[32:54] Like that no no I figured it out all on my own did.

[32:59] She give you any discipline or.

[33:02] She But she caught me smoking weed one time and kind of yelled at me, but that was it.

[33:13] Did she interact with you much as a kid, or was it like two strangers under the same roof?

[33:23] Well, see, I have a lot of photos from us.
us uh like there's a lot of photos of me and my mom together you know like doing stuff going out uh going camping snuggling in bed and stuff like that but i don't ever remember like, really interacting with her that much i mean i think at one point she tried to kind of, mend things together when I was an adult like after the age of maybe somewhere between 16 and, uh 19 or no sorry 16 and 20 let's just say 20s early 20s uh and we would have breakfast every weekend so we would uh you know wake up early in the morning and go to a local diner or something and just get skip breakfast and uh chat about nothing talk.

[34:27] About the dog and the weather, exactly and how are things with your mother now.

[34:35] Well that's uh i don't know i've been thinking about our relationship a lot as a whole uh ever since listening to colin shows and listening to your shows in general and uh you know she's happy for me that we have a child on the way and we have a house and all this stuff and she's very proud of me but, I mean I don't know there's not a whole lot there I would say.

[35:13] And do you enjoy the relationship?

[35:20] I'm very indifferent towards it I'll be honest just very indifferent.

[35:26] What does your wife think of her?

[35:30] She thinks that when we have children, she won't be a good babysitter.
Because I don't think, my wife thinks that she doesn't really like being around babies or really interacting with them. But I don't know how true that is.
Because her current husband and his children, or his adult grown children, one of her, basically, she's been exposed to other babies and she loves hanging out with them.
But yeah, my wife, she's not sure how she's going to be around our new baby.

[36:24] But does your wife like your mother?

[36:29] I'd say so, yeah.

[36:31] Does she know how abandon-y and distant your mother has been to you?

[36:40] Yeah, I mean, I've talked about my past relationships with my mom to my wife.
Yeah, certainly. I've actually, you know, I think I've gone through somewhat of a transformation in my relationship with my mom.
um so i used to i used to have these these thoughts of of her uh like losing my mom you know just having these i'd say i don't know visions or ideas or just these future events where she's like like on her deathbed, or she's about to die.
Every time I used to think about it, it just made me weep.
But now when I think about it, I don't get that feeling anymore, and I wonder what's changed.

[37:40] I mean, I have a thought, but what do you think?

[37:46] Maybe deep down i've realized that it's it's not really a relationship worth salvaging and i've kind of forged my own path so i don't really need to necessarily worry about what will happen to her because she's kind of, i don't know if sitting in her ways is the correct word or kind of set down a certain path in life and um we just don't really i don't think we're ever going to cross paths again so help.

[38:19] Me get back to your wife likes your mother yeah, i mean your mother did some significant harm to you right i mean she married a guy she may have driven him off to the point where he wouldn't even see you and fathers rarely abandon their their children, usually what they're doing is they're trying to get away from a bad wife.
Or a dangerous wife, or whatever.
So she, and she also never made it a requirement or never got your father to get involved even when she was on the other side of the world, right?

[39:01] No, no, but.

[39:02] She didn't parent you. She didn't give you guidance. She exposed you to a lot of dangerous guys with these guys she was dating, right? She abandoned you for a year.
Like, this is not a great mom, right? Right.

[39:15] And just to add to that, this, this theme of abandonment, because I have thought about whether or not I do have abandonment issues.
Just, just to add onto that, um, when I was in high school.

[39:27] It's not a question of whether you have abandonment issues. The question is, were you abandoned? Yes.

[39:33] Yeah, I was.

[39:33] And yes, you were.

[39:36] And, um, I wanted to just add to that when I was in high school, uh, I would have friends over, just one or two friends.
My mom would get us pizza, and we'd play video games all night, and she would leave.
And she wouldn't come back until like, you know, I know it's not funny, it's terrible.
But yeah, she would leave us, and she wouldn't come back until after midnight, usually.

[40:09] Like she's going to bars and stuff? stuff.

[40:10] I lord knows where she went i never asked her.

[40:15] Well was she dressed up to be attractive okay so she's going to bars or lobbies or like someplace where there are guys right yeah she's trolling and there's a mate or a boyfriend.

[40:26] Yes and this happened uh for years.

[40:31] Okay so bad mom right yeah who did you a lot of harm, so explain this to me, how your wife can love you and also like someone who did you a lot of harm.
Like, let me give you an example. Let's say that your wife had an older brother who beat her up regularly as a child. Would you like him?
No. Well, why not?

[41:10] Well he's family obviously uh no i mean that's that's a totally abusive relationship that i would not be okay with.

[41:20] And especially if he'd never apologized right right.

[41:24] Or apologize make amends uh hell.

[41:26] Even has your mom done any of that stuff uh no no i haven't confronted her understand again i mean your wife's not on the call she's welcome to join us but but help me understand how your wife loves you and someone who did you great harm.
Well, likes your mother, I would say loves, right? So she loves you, which means that she... How can you like someone who does harm to someone you love or did?

[42:00] Well, you can't. It's impossible. It's like water and oil.

[42:03] They separate. What is your wife doing saying that she likes your mom?
And the only problem is she might not be a very good babysitter.
Well, duh. Well, but, like, that's the only issue she has?

[42:17] Yeah, that's putting things into context, for sure.

[42:24] Now, is it because you've hid the harm your mother did from your wife?

[42:35] I don't know.

[42:36] Do you give your wife that little chuckle and she minimizes it to conform, or what?

[42:42] I...
I don't know about, I mean, I've had conversations with my mom about my wife, with my wife, about, like, you know, what happened.
And I've told her the story of where, you know, she would get us pizzas and then leave us all night.

[43:05] Okay, so your wife knows all about the incredibly irresponsive and neglectful behavior that your mother engaged in consistently forever, right?
Right, so your wife knows all of this, right?

[43:17] Right.

[43:19] And she likes your mom?

[43:30] Yeah maybe it's best to kind of keep our distance.

[43:33] No no i don't think it's your answer is not the answer to you is not keep your distance because that's what you were raised with right as a woman who kept her distance the question is what of your wife's parents is hidden from her because Because your mother's behavior is hidden from her.
In other words, how are your in-laws?

[43:56] Oh, yeah. Yeah, there's a good topic to get into.
So, do you want to know about my in-laws?

[44:13] I think it's important.

[44:15] Yeah, absolutely. So, my wife's father, he owns a business where he's doing e-commerce.
So, he's got his own business there. This is actually kind of a continuation of his career path where he's very business-oriented and not so family-oriented, I would say.
If that makes any sense.

Introduction to Family Dynamics

[44:56] You're going to have to just speed it up a little. This is like a real lot of pauses here. Just tell me what he's like.

[45:02] Yeah, he's a turbo NPC, if that makes sense.

[45:06] Oh, like your mom?

[45:07] Yeah. Well, I say turbo NPC in the sense that he's very high IQ.
He's got an MBA, very business savvy guy, but he's very much with the message, the current thing that's going on.

[45:24] Okay. And what about her mom?

[45:27] Yeah. Her mom is more or less the same.
Something that always struck me is that there's never any questions from them about any kind of curiosity about what's happening.
There's always kind of like – Sorry.

[45:45] Curiosity about what?

[45:48] Just, you know, how we're doing or, like, what's going on in life, things like that.
It's always kind of just sticking to a certain message.

[46:00] And what were your wife's parents like when she was growing up?

[46:06] So they were I would say, they weren't um man sorry sorry I'm trying to, formulate a thought here uh so they were uh, loving, I would say.
But they weren't really... I'm sorry. I can't...
I'm just trying to think here.
So my wife's told me that her dad wasn't really there emotionally for a majority of her childhood and that her brother also got into a lot of fights a lot of verbal fights with with the father as he was growing up that's kind of, the extent of it and.

[47:18] What's your wife's relationship with the mother.

[47:23] She's very supportive of the fact that we're gonna have a child and she's also also willing to come visit us for about a month and help us out.

[47:35] Sorry, what's your wife's relationship? I didn't ask what your mother-in-law's relationship was to your future child.
What's your wife's relationship like with her mother?

[47:47] I'd say it's supportive. They like to talk to each other. They like each other's company.
That's their relationship.

[48:00] Okay. So it's a good relationship. Is that right?

[48:05] That's right.

[48:06] Okay. And the father, does he still work a lot or is that calmed down a little?

[48:13] Oh, yeah, constantly. We were on vacation in Canada, actually, not too long ago.
And yeah, I mean, he was just always checking his phone during dinner, on walks, whatever we were doing, you know, he was always kind of checking his phone or sending texts out or emails.
So it's constant. It's never ending.

[48:38] And what's your relationship like with him i mean do you guys talk about you said he's a bit of an npc do you talk about anything important or relevant no.

[48:47] Yeah i i'm somewhat standoffish with him i don't really like to engage with him um i don't think i really like him all that much.

[49:02] And what do you think of your mother-in-law.

[49:06] Uh, she's fine. You know, she's fine.
I think, I think she's more or less like, uh, like the father-in-law.
Maybe with a bit more emotion.

[49:19] Sorry, I'm not sure what you mean by more like the father-in-law.
Does she also issue a kind of a workaholic too?

[49:25] Not, no, she's not as of much of a workaholic as, as the father-in-law.

[49:31] Oh, but they both have careers. Is that right?

[49:33] Yeah, he actually employs her.

[49:36] Okay. And did they also have those careers when your wife was little?

[49:43] No, no. He worked for major electronics companies on their… No.

[49:50] No. I know that he worked, but did your mother-in-law also work when your wife was little?

[49:54] Oh, right. Well, I believe she homeschooled for a while.
However, they moved to China early in their years, and they spent a lot of time there.

[50:15] With the Far East theme going on here, all right. Right.

[50:18] Yeah. That was a fairly dark period of time for both my wife and her brother.

[50:26] Oh, why is that?

[50:28] Oh, well, they had friends. They had...

[50:32] Oh, like they were pulled out and dropped in as big-nosed foreign persons in China?

[50:36] Yes. Yes, exactly. Exactly. And it was... How long were you out there for?
I believe it was two, three years.

[50:48] And what was her age?

[50:51] I believe she was...
Early teens.

[50:59] Oh, wow. Yeah, so it's a pretty important time.

[51:02] Yeah.

[51:02] And do you know why they moved out there?

[51:08] For my father-in-law's job. It was between China and California, and he chose China.

[51:18] Why?

[51:23] I don't know.
I don't know. I don't know why he chose China.

[51:30] Does your wife know?

[51:31] I don't know.
She might have a better understanding of why he chose China over California.

[51:42] You pull your early, your tween daughter to China for a couple of years, that's pretty rough.

[51:48] Yeah, she was, I mean, she's told me she was fairly depressed, or I shouldn't say fairly.
She was very depressed. In fact, same with her brother.
I mean, they had to see a therapist because the brother was having thoughts of suicide when they were there.

[52:05] My gosh, what the heck was going on in the family that they're not saying, okay, we have to abandon this experiment?

[52:15] Well, the father-in-law is very much pursuing his career in business.
I believe he wanted to be… No.

[52:25] No, but he's a father.

[52:27] Yeah, exactly.

[52:28] I mean, if you want to pursue a career in business to the point where your kids get suicidal, maybe don't have kids.

[52:34] Yeah.

[52:43] I mean, am I wrong?

[52:45] No, no, that's right on the money now.

[52:49] Now, the mother went along with this, right?

[52:52] Oh, yeah. Yeah, she went right along.
Matter of fact, she actually became a teacher while she was there, teaching at an international school.

[53:06] Wow. Okay.
And, I mean, does your wife have any real understanding as to why any of this happened?

[53:18] Her understanding is that her dad was just very business-driven.
He wanted to make a lot of money.
He believes that having a lot of money is essential in living a good life.

[53:35] Over his kid's mental health and even potentially their lives if the brother had gotten suicidal.

[53:43] Yeah. That's exactly right.

[53:46] And the mom too.

[53:49] Right, because she chose him, right?

[53:52] Right. Well, no, and she chose to go. I mean, if you're in a marriage, like you know this, you're a married guy, I'm a married guy.
When you're in a marriage, if your partner doesn't want to do something, right what happens you compromise you try to come up.

[54:09] With a third solution.

[54:10] Yeah i mean like and you talk about with the kids like where the kids asked oh this is interesting because you didn't have much control over your life as a kid either right well your kids asked do you want to go to california or china right.

[54:24] And and i think okay okay and now that you bring that up i think they were asked if they did want to move to china and they thought that china would be a a fun experience no.

[54:35] No but were they given the choice between china well the three choices right stay where you are go to china go to california right those are the three choices right.

[54:45] Right and yeah i i do believe that they were on the side of china.

[54:52] I doubt it i i enormously doubt it i enormously doubt that your your wife and her brother who had an entire community and friends were like, let's go to China.

[55:09] Right, let's just uproot everything and move to a foreign land.
Sounds like a good old time.

[55:13] Well, we don't, you know, we're going to stick out. We're not Asian.
We don't know the language. We don't know the culture.
We don't know the food. We don't have any friends.
There's no possibility of boyfriends or girlfriends, really.
I mean, of course they didn't choose China.

[55:30] Yeah.

[55:43] So, what the heck?

[55:48] Well, the father just...

[55:53] No, both the parents. Because if the mom had said, no, we're not going to China, are you crazy?
We've got kids who are embedded in a social situation. They've got friends.
Is her brother older?

[56:07] Yes.

[56:07] Okay, so he wants to date. He's got sports teams and all that, right?

[56:12] Yeah.

[56:16] It's funny i mean i seem to be the only one who's upset about this like you're just like yep well it's not yep yep okay right i mean it's it's always funny in these calls to me where some pretty outrageous stuff is happening where a kid gets suicidal and your wife is depressed for years right yeah and um i guess you don't seem to be bothered i mean this is this did a a huge amount of harm to your wife.

[56:41] Yeah, it did. It did, especially when she moved back to the States.

[56:47] Wait, are you saying that it got worse when she got back?
I'm not disagreeing. I'm just a little surprised.

[56:56] Well, let me finish that thought.
So her parents stayed in China, and she moved back to the States to go to the university.

Childhood in China

[57:09] Hang on, sorry, I thought she went to China in her early teens.
I'm sorry, I'm not criticizing. I think I'm lost. I thought she went to China in her early teens. Now suddenly she's in university coming back from China?

[57:26] Yeah, so maybe it was mid-teens, actually.

[57:28] Well, that ain't university then. Oh, she went there in her mid-teens.

[57:33] Right, yeah. To China in mid-teens, and then as that wrapped up, and she was ready for...

[57:40] Sorry, how much older is her brother?

[57:42] Only a year.

[57:44] Okay, so maybe she's 15, he's 16, they stay there for two or three years, they come back and go to university, and their parents stay in China, is that right?

[57:56] That's right.

[57:58] Okay. And you're saying it was bad for your wife and her brother when they came back?

[58:05] Well, I don't know how it was for her brother when they came back to the States for university, but I talked to my wife about what it was like when she came back to the States to do her university degree.
And yeah, it was still a rough transition, to put it mildly, I believe at one point.

[58:32] But what happened? Tell me a little bit in detail. This is a rough transition.
I don't know what that means. What happened?

[58:39] It was just...
I guess she had problems making friends when she got back to the States.
She had no cultural references.

[58:51] She'd lived about as far in a... I mean, she'd lived in communist China, right?
So she'd lived about as opposite an experience as American kids could have, right? Hopefully, for a while.

[59:01] Yeah.

[59:03] And her parents stayed in China. Do you know how long they stayed for?

[59:12] They stayed...
Oh, let's see. Maybe another five, six years.

[59:25] Oh my God, really?
So your wife's entire, like, becoming an adult, young adult, getting through school and all of that, plus beyond, her parents, I'm sure they weren't gone completely, but they were still living in China?

[59:42] That's right.

[59:44] Well, what do you think of this?

[59:47] I i mean i i talked to her about this and i think that's that's a no no what do you think.

[59:55] About this not what i after my.

[59:56] Wife what do you think yeah yeah i mean that's kind of like what happened to me i i was abandoned and uh it seems to me like she was also abandoned by her by her parents whatever their intentions may have been okay.

[1:00:11] Let me rephrase that do you feel anything about this.

[1:00:26] No, no, I don't.

[1:00:29] Okay, well, I won't do the feeling for you then. I'm not going to try and cause upset where you don't feel anything, so we can move on to another topic if you like.
Okay. Sorry, you were going to say something?

[1:00:44] No, no, go ahead, go ahead.

[1:00:45] No, you go ahead.

[1:00:48] Yeah, what other topics? topics, I'm sure you probably picked up on certain things that I've said that you're curious about, so please, go ahead.

[1:01:02] Well, no, I mean, I can certainly see why you're having some trouble figuring out how much time to spend with your family.

[1:01:11] Is it because I'm doing the same thing as they are, as the parents are?

[1:01:18] Parents have no bond.
your mom's got no bond I guess she likes taking selfies when you're cuddling but your mom doesn't seem to have any bond your dad certainly didn't have any bond did you ever hang out with any of the stepdads after they left or the stepdad.

[1:01:36] Uh no no but.

[1:01:38] It's got no bond right.

[1:01:41] Yeah yeah I never had a father figure.

[1:01:47] No you had father figures they just had no bond with you I mean, you had a grandfather, you had a stepdad for two years or whatever, right?
So you had father figures, but there's no bond here.

[1:02:02] No.

[1:02:03] I mean, if I decided to move someplace, right? And, you know, I asked about it with my daughter.
Let's say I moved someplace, right? I moved to Elbonia or whatever, right? It's a made-up country. I moved to Elbonia.
And I would go over it with my daughter in excruciating detail.
and we would go and visit, right? Do you like it?
I would see if she'd like to learn the language. Do you want to learn the language?
And then we'd move out there.
And if she got depressed and didn't want to be there, what would happen?

[1:02:38] Well, you'd accommodate her, of course, because she's your daughter.

[1:02:42] Well, what does that mean, I would accommodate her?

[1:02:45] Well, if she's depressed, then clearly what you're doing isn't working out.
So you have to figure out a way to switch courses.

[1:02:52] Whatever you're doing. because that's having a bond and that's your responsibility as a parent to do what's good for your kids and being in China was terrible for the kids right?
it was ok so you come back, I mean it's demonic to choose money over your children's happiness and even potentially survival well my kids are miserable One of them's miserable, one of them's suicidal, but I'll make it back, baby.

Impact of Parents' Choices

[1:03:29] Okay, you could be surrounded by stacks of money on your deathbed, right?

[1:03:34] Right. What does it mean in the end if you're not bonded to your children?

[1:03:37] You know, you're the richest asshole in the graveyard.

[1:03:42] That's exactly it.

[1:03:46] So they have no bond, do they? I mean, unless I'm missing something.

[1:03:52] Yeah. Um.

[1:03:59] I mean, they have bonds of sentimentality and history and right. I get all of that.
But in terms of like, I don't know, sacrifice or do what's best for your kids, that be the thing that you guide your life by? I mean, there's nothing.

[1:04:15] No, no, there's really nothing there.

[1:04:18] And you don't have much of a bond with your mom, right? No.

[1:04:23] No, not really. I'm sorry, not really.

[1:04:26] So then you've got a kid coming, right? Yeah, you've got a kid coming.
And how far is your wife along?

[1:04:37] Second trimester. We're expecting in September.

[1:04:42] Congratulations. All right. So you're expecting in September.
And your question is, should you change careers?

[1:04:55] Right. Or stick to my current career.

[1:04:59] No, I get that. Should you change careers or not? I get that.
The or not is there, right?
Yeah. And you haven't had this example, but the answer to the question is pretty simple.

[1:05:12] Yeah.

[1:05:12] What's best for your kid?

[1:05:16] I've realized that through our conversation, yeah.

[1:05:22] What's happening? Is your wife staying home?

[1:05:24] Yes. We plan on me being the sole income, incomer, and her staying with the child.
Also plan to have a second child thereafter.
And yeah, I want her to be a stay-at-home mom. That's what she also wants.

[1:05:48] Okay, so what is it that's going to give you the maximum time at home?

[1:05:51] That's what we're playing.

[1:05:52] Yeah, what choice is going to give you the maximum time at home?
Because it matters, if you're going to say to your wife, stay home with the baby, then you've got to be home as much as possible, otherwise she's going to kind of lose adult contact, right?

Planning for the Future

[1:06:20] And it's not particularly fair, in my view, it's not particularly fair to say to a woman, you stay home, I'll be working 12 hours a day.
Because then she's kind of like a single mom, right?

[1:06:36] Yeah i'm it's like where where am i in where am i in the picture.

[1:06:39] Right and you you're in your 30s is that right yeah okay so you've had you know 15 to 20 years to figure out what you want to do with your life and what you've chosen is to be the mechanic guy and to be a husband and a father right?

[1:07:00] That's right.

[1:07:01] Okay, so you don't have an example of parents who make sacrifices for their children, right?

[1:07:09] No, I don't.

[1:07:10] And your wife doesn't either, really?

[1:07:17] No.

[1:07:18] Okay, so that's got to change, right?

[1:07:23] Yeah, otherwise we're just going to repeat this entire cycle all over again.

[1:07:27] So what is best for your family?

[1:07:34] For both parents to be there.

[1:07:37] Well, I mean, you've got to provide, I guess, right? I mean, ideally, it's nice if you can save up a bit of money and then stay home for a while. Maybe you've done that.
But yeah, you've got to go out and provide, and I get all of that.
But you want to be home as much as possible when you have little kids in particular, right?

[1:07:55] Right. And that's why I said in my initial message is that, you know, is it better to just hold off on this whole thing and just stick to what I'm doing now?
Because I'm also considering other jobs in my career field, not just this whole finance thing.

[1:08:18] Well, and I get that. But why now?
You had 50 years, right? Why now?

[1:08:27] Yeah, yeah. Because the current job I'm in, it's, I don't know.

[1:08:33] It's easy. No, it's not that. It's not that at all.

[1:08:36] Yeah.

[1:08:37] You've been 10 years, right?

[1:08:40] Right, 10 years.

[1:08:42] So right before your kid comes, you get all antsy?
It's not about your career. Yeah.
You fear you won't be able to bond, and your mother doesn't want you to bond, in my opinion.
You know what's going to happen if you, because you really will.
You stay home, you cuddle, you spend as much time as possible with your baby.
You're going to bond, right?
Why is that bad for your mom?

[1:09:23] Because then I'll truly see how badly I was treated.

[1:09:28] Yes, so your mother doesn't want you to bond with your child.
Or, to put it another way, it doesn't serve your mother's interests if that happens, if that makes sense.

[1:09:41] Right.

[1:09:47] I mean, personally, I think this is where a lot of postpartum depression comes from, but that's just my amateur nonsense opinion, of course.
But, yeah. Yeah, so you've been okay in this job for a decade plus, and now a kid's coming, and you're like, oh, I got to change.

[1:10:09] Yeah, exactly. I got to make a move right now, and now's the time to strike.

[1:10:16] Is your wife expressing any dissatisfaction with your income or cost of living?
or like is she saying, you got to make a move because we need more money or anything?

[1:10:28] No, no, this is all on me.

[1:10:31] Has your mother said anything or have your in-laws said anything or has anyone said anything about like, you got to go make more money?

[1:10:40] Nope, that was all on me. I began searching for a different job maybe about four months ago.

[1:10:50] So when you found out about the pregnancy?

Career Considerations

[1:10:53] No, no. It was more like kind of looking at the- Oh.

[1:10:56] When you were trying to get pregnant.

[1:10:58] No, even before that, I believe. Just kind of looking at the long term, like, do I want to stay with this current company that I'm at or look for something better?
And that's where that started.

[1:11:12] But why so long?

[1:11:17] What do you mean?

[1:11:19] Well, why so long? I mean, if you could do a job for eight years or nine years, why is the 10th year suddenly like, got to get out?

[1:11:26] Oh, I think you might be missing a detail here.
So because I moved states, I had a different job, but it's still under the same kind of general field, if you will.

[1:11:42] No, I'm aware that when you moved states, you didn't keep the same job.
I'm aware of that. I'm down with that. But it's still the same field, right?

[1:11:51] Yeah, more or less.

[1:11:52] More interaction with...

[1:11:55] It's more stationary. You know, you go to the same place day in and day out, whereas my previous role, I had to kind of go everywhere.

[1:12:03] No, but this is way better. Isn't it?
Because when you have... And if you're thinking about sales or whatever, like, wouldn't you have to travel a lot?
And even in your old job, didn't you travel going from place to place?

[1:12:15] I did, yeah. I did travel quite a lot. I spent a lot of time driving.

[1:12:20] So this is a way better job to be a father, right?

[1:12:30] Well, I work about 10 hours a day, so not quite.

[1:12:36] Sorry, why do you work 10 hours a day?

[1:12:41] For overtime?

[1:12:43] No, but don't do that. Because you've got a kid at home and a wife who needs you.

[1:12:49] Right. But I have to make enough to afford where we're living and just afford basic necessities.

[1:13:03] Isn't your father-in-law kind of wealthy?

[1:13:07] He is, yeah. He's got to help out?
Yeah, he could. I mean, he offered to buy us a house when we initially moved here, which I said, you know, no way.

[1:13:18] Why not?

[1:13:21] Well, I have to earn what I'm given in life.
I can't just be given things that I didn't really earn it.
And then what's the point of living if everything's just handed to you just because of who you married, you know? Just kidding.

[1:13:38] He's not handing it to you. who's he handing it to.

[1:13:44] Well okay to us.

[1:13:48] No not to he's handing it to his daughter, He wants to buy a house for his daughter. Now, listen, I understand this.
There's male pride. I want to provide for my own family and so on, right? I get all of that.
But, you know, if your father-in-law wants to buy you a house, that means you wouldn't at all have to work any overtime.
You might even be able to go down to three or four days a week for a while, right?

[1:14:19] Yeah.

[1:14:20] Isn't that a lot of time, quality time with your family?

[1:14:26] And that's more quality time than I would know what to do with.

[1:14:33] Well, that's the problem, right?
You know, the dad out working, do you have much of a commute?

[1:14:50] No, like 15 minutes tops. Okay.

[1:14:54] Right. Right, but you've got to clean up after work. You've got to get in a little bit early. So aren't you talking 13, sorry, 10, 11, 11 plus hours a day?

[1:15:04] Yeah, thereabout.

[1:15:06] Okay, that's a long ass work day, right?

[1:15:09] Yeah.

[1:15:10] And are you saying that if you work eight hours rather than 10 hours, you can't afford your life?

[1:15:17] I'm sure we could afford it, but it would be pretty tight.

[1:15:22] Well, what does tight mean?

[1:15:25] Well, see, that's why I was looking at this other role here in finances, because it's only 40 hours a week, and I don't think I'd have longer days. I wouldn't have as long days.

[1:15:40] Don't you have to go and visit people in their homes and visit people where they are?

[1:15:45] Uh i from what i've been told most of the meetings can take place over zoom or the client actually comes into the office itself.

[1:15:55] Really um yeah okay all right i guess i guess i mean i when i've had insurance guys they come to my house and but okay i mean i mean that's fine but you know uh is it I guess you're not salaried, you just get commission?

[1:16:14] Yeah, it's commission-based.

[1:16:15] Right, which is why they don't particularly care how skilled you are, because if you don't make any sales, they don't pay you, right?

Entrepreneurial Risks

[1:16:22] Exactly.

[1:16:23] Yeah, I don't know that that's a particularly great answer, because if you're concerned about finances to the point where you have to work 10 hours rather than 8, I don't know that launching yourself out into space with no particular background or training to try and close deals in the finance world with no either training in in sales or anything like that um you know that's that's a pretty exciting that's a pretty tough ride.

[1:17:02] I think I could do it. I have a pretty high skill ceiling.

[1:17:08] You think you could do it, but based on what? I'm not doubting you.
I'm just like, based on what? I mean, have you ever worked pure commission before?

[1:17:18] No, I've never done commission before.

[1:17:21] Have you lived on sales or had a sales salary before?

[1:17:25] No.

[1:17:26] Have you done entrepreneurial stuff before because this would be entrepreneurial right i mean you're within a structure but it's pretty entrepreneurial yes.

[1:17:33] Yes well at my previous role uh when i was a service technician they emphasized a um like you're working like a small business so, even though you're out there under a company's name you can still kind of make your own work if that makes any sense so.

[1:17:55] You weren't on commission were you no.

[1:17:58] No i wasn't.

[1:17:58] Okay let's i mean i just be frank with you you have no experience in sales no particular experience in marketing no particular experience in entrepreneurial stuff you've got no experience or knowledge really about financial products or insurance products or the financial or insurance industry as a whole and you've never worked commission before listen i'm a big one for confidence, but bro.
You're really rolling some serious dice here.

[1:18:27] Right, which is why I'm kind of second-guessing this whole thing.

[1:18:33] No, no, you said you think you can do it. And again, if you were an entrepreneurial kind of guy, and there's nothing good or bad about this, right?
But you wouldn't have been doing, I mean, have you ever done anything entrepreneurial or has somebody else ever signed your paychecks?

[1:18:57] No, I've never done anything.

[1:18:58] Okay, so 15 years, I mean, I guess 20 if you start counting sort of mid-teen stuff. But let's just say 15 years or so, give or take, right? You've been an adult.
And if you really had an entrepreneurial drive, it would have happened by now.
Right? You would have, hey, oh my gosh, I understand this business.
I'm going to start my own business. I'm going to get a truck.
I'm going to get a website. Like, you would have done that, right?

[1:19:24] Yeah.

[1:19:25] And this is not a good or bad thing, right? I just, I mean, I know for myself, I always wanted to do entrepreneurial stuff.
I did entrepreneurial stuff even in my teens.
Like, I would line up all night and I would buy, I bought, like, tickets to the Michael Jackson concert and then I sold them.
I ran my own paper route, which is, I had to go and get new people to take the paper and I really worked it to, you know, I mean, silly things like that, but I just did a lot of, and then the moment I could do something entrepreneurial in my 20s, you know, when I had the opportunity or the idea to go co-found a company, I went and co-founded a company and, you know, and again, it's not a better or worse thing.
I'm just saying that from my experience, the people who really want to be entrepreneurs, don't wait till they're in their 30s and about to have a baby.
right and it's not if if you do this right and if if you say like if you say okay honey you got to stay home i'll provide the income now i'm going to do something i have no history or experience or skill set in and i don't get paid if i don't sell, i mean yeah it's a huge risk deal for your wife massive.

[1:20:46] Massive risk i.

[1:20:49] Mean honestly this is this is almost like self-sabotage i i gotta be frank with you, this is introducing a massive risky oh i mean pretty terrifying set of variables into your life right right when you're about to have a baby.

[1:21:15] Yeah, and I mean, I'm sure it's going to be stressful enough as it is with the birth and thereafter.

[1:21:22] No, it's going to be joyful. No, it's not having a kid. Everyone, oh, it's so stressful. No, it's great fun. Honestly, it's a blast. It's great fun.
And again, I don't want to sort of have myself as any kind of yardstick, but even when it came to doing this show, I mean, I've been doing philosophy for 20 years already.
I have a graduate degree in the history of philosophy.
I'd been writing books, I'd written a whole manifesto, I'd written a whole series of philosophical treatises, I'd been well-trained in philosophy, had written philosophy papers, and I had tested the business model by taking donations for, I don't know, six to twelve months before I made the leap.
So I already had an income, I had already proven that I could do it.
And even then it was scary.
You don't have that experience. experience. And I think you're going to turn, I think you're at significant risk, massive risk, I would say, of turning a really joyful and happy time into something that's pretty horrible and stressful.
Because I gotta make money. And you know, listen, when you've got that urgency behind you, I gotta make money. I gotta pay the bills.
You can't be a good salesman if you're desperate. You ever go, I don't know, in a car dealership or someplace where they're trying to sell your timeshares or something and you can you can smell the sweat coming off the salesman it's like you don't want to do business with someone like that right yeah.

[1:22:47] Yeah i mean they're not relaxed they're looking to get a commission right away from you they're like a predator almost rather than a.

[1:22:53] Friend who's.

[1:22:54] Trying to offer you a service.

[1:22:55] Right and so you're going to be in that kind of situation if you've got i mean i don't know do you have a year savings or more, no well how much savings do you have how long could you live with no income.

[1:23:08] Half a year.

[1:23:12] Right. Okay. And that includes the cost of a baby?

[1:23:18] Yeah.

[1:23:19] Okay. Well, that's good. It's good to have six months, but that's really for emergencies, not for career flips.
So the question is then, why is this popping up and becoming something you're seriously considering, right? And I think we know the answer, right?
And why is your wife not saying, hey, man, I love the impulse to provide better for us, but this isn't the thing?
did your wife want to take the house that your father-in-law offered uh.

[1:23:50] Yeah yeah she did and.

[1:23:53] You said no because you want to provide right right and then you want to go on 100 commission in something you have no experience in.

[1:24:03] Yeah that's pretty.

Recognizing Self-Sabotage

[1:24:04] So this is a dangerous time in your mind right and i think it's it's a wise thing to call me or someone like me I think it's a wise thing to call because you understand there's a kind of sabotage II element here.

[1:24:20] Sabotage in this sense that if I were to go through with it I would be what repeating the same.

[1:24:27] Side with a sabotage II element is no honey I I'm gonna provide for the family I would be grossly insulted if your father paid for a house I'm gonna provide for the family oh by the way I'm leaving the career that pays me money to go to something I have no experience with that pays me nothing unless I make a sale.
Now, listen, if you want to pursue, let's say you want to go be a financial advisor and so on, you know, more power to you.
Like, I'm a big one, obviously, for following your dreams. It's just not off a cliff, right?
So, you know, you've got lunch at work. You've got, like, you can listen to podcasts going to sleep about financial advising.
You can, you know, after your kids, you know, are a little older, you can take courses at night.
Like, there's tons of things you could do to get there and get prepared and all that kind of stuff. Does that make sense?

[1:25:22] Yeah and i haven't done that preparation so it wouldn't make sense to go further with this.

[1:25:30] So you're have a certain amount of anxiety i mean okay let me ask you this i mean how do you feel because you mentioned stress how do you feel about uh the incoming baby time um.

Anticipation of Fatherhood

[1:25:47] Yeah i mean it's it's certainly been more present just because my wife has all these you know, all these cravings.
And, you know, sometimes we've got to go out and get a burger or buy a pizza and I'm like, you know, do we really need to do this right now?
And we've got plenty of food at home, but she wants it. She wants to.

[1:26:11] Ask about your wife's cravings. What are your feelings? Don't make me come over there.

[1:26:18] Yeah, it's I you know it's, I guess, scary in a way, but also exciting. That's kind of how I feel about it.

[1:26:32] How do you feel that you'll do as a father?

[1:26:37] I think I will be the dad I never had.

[1:26:43] How are you going to be the dad you never had?

[1:26:47] By being there and bonding with my children.

[1:26:51] Okay, but how are you going to do that? because neither you nor your wife sound like you have exactly crazy glue bonded parents.

[1:27:00] No we don't, well that's why I mean you know just today we were talking about these parenting books and how we want to, read them and figure out how we're going to parent and bond with our future child.

[1:27:24] I think it's great that you're reading those. It's great. But let me sort of give you something more direct.
So the reason I was asking earlier what your wife thinks of your mother, right, is that if you truly love someone, you can't also love someone who did them great harm and is not repentant at all, right? Is that a fair statement?

[1:27:48] Yes.

Building Trust Through Conscience

[1:27:49] Okay. Okay, so how strongly are you and your wife bonded if you like the parents who did great harm and have not apologized?

[1:28:09] How strongly me and my wife are bonded together? Yes. Is that the question?

[1:28:14] I mean let me ask you this have your wife's parents apologized and tried to make some restitution for cratering their mid teen years in China, I no so significant harm no apologies, if you love your wife I'm not saying you don't but this is what I'm sort of trying to say to you in terms of bonding right Right.
If you had a babysitter, you've got your little kids. Right.
And you've got a babysitter and you find out that the babysitter, I don't know, like had them watch one of the Saw movies or or some blood soaked killer movie.
And the kids were like screaming with terror when you got home.
Would you like the babysitter?

[1:29:05] No, I'd fire them on the spot.

[1:29:07] Yeah. And and you try to make sure they never got another job as a babysitter again. again, right?

[1:29:13] Absolutely.

[1:29:13] Because they harmed your children, right?
Do you see where I'm going with this?

[1:29:28] Yeah. That's something I thought about is why, considering our past, why hasn't there been any kind of recourse from either my side of the family or her side of the family?

[1:29:45] Sorry, what do you mean by recourse?

[1:29:48] Maybe not recourse. That might not be the right word.

[1:29:51] It might be the right word. I'm just not sure what you mean.

[1:29:54] Well, just acknowledging what happened and that it was wrong for them to do it.

[1:29:59] Okay, so they're not bothered by what they did, right?
I mean, is your mom haunted? Is she sleepless at night? Does she, like, doesn't know why she just feels sad or anxious?
Or, like, is her conscience nagging at her? Is her soul begging for closure about the past?
Or just kind of sailing through life like nothing mattered? battered.

[1:30:21] Nope just sailing away.

[1:30:24] Okay so that's having no conscience isn't it yeah.

[1:30:28] Yeah no conscience.

[1:30:30] Okay so she has no conscience and people who have no conscience you can't grow a conscience in your mother right no.

[1:30:39] It's not gonna spring out one day and.

[1:30:41] No and there's nothing you could do to summon it right it's like if your arm if your mother lost an arm in some horrible boating accident, what are you going to do?
Jam some fucking frankfurters on her shoulder and call it an arm and say, I guess we're done here? Look, I've regrown your arm.
Look, you can't regrow it. You can't make it there when it's not there.
It's not like hair. It doesn't grow on its own.

[1:31:00] Yeah, some frankenarm.

[1:31:02] Right, right. And have your wife's parents expressed any regret that she's ever reported about spending eight, nine years in China and half-reckon their kids' teenage lives? Thank you.

[1:31:22] They haven't said a thing about it, just that it happened.

[1:31:25] So then you're trying to speak to people in Japanese, but they don't speak Japanese, because you're trying to speak to people in terms of bad things they did and restitution that's required and apologies that are needed, but you're trying to speak conscience to people who don't have a conscience.
Like you're yelling into the ears, or you're talking to someone who's deaf.

[1:31:48] Or yelling into the wind.

[1:31:52] Well, no, the wind is too impersonal because the wind is not a human being who has agency.

[1:31:57] Oh, I see.

[1:31:59] I mean, these are people, right? And look, I'm not saying that they were all just terrible parents or anything like this, but, you know, I mean, that's why I'm kind of asking about the feelings here.
Because you understand that having a bond with someone requires a conscience. Conscience.
That's why I've been probing, like, how you feel about things.
Do you have any feelings about things? That's why I push back on the chuckle.
Right? So, to bond with someone is for them to trust you, right? Does that make sense?

[1:32:35] Yeah.

[1:32:35] Right? They have to trust you to lower their defenses to truly bond with you, right? Now, the reason why a conscience is so important is that you can't trust people who don't have a conscience.
If you knew that your mother didn't have any nerve endings in her hand and she was passing you a cup of, I don't know, steaming hot tea or something, you wouldn't you wouldn't say is that too hot for me to take because she'd be like well no she doesn't have any feeling in her hand so she can't tell you does that make sense right.

[1:33:16] There's there's no.

[1:33:17] Yeah you got no nerve endings right i mean that's that's isn't that the test they do like if you've been in some horrible accident and they'll they'll try and tickle your feet can you feel it they'll prick your feet can you feel it right right.

[1:33:32] Any sensation that's there.

[1:33:33] Yeah yeah Yeah. So you can't bond with people who don't have a conscience because you can't trust them because they don't know when they're hurting you.
And they only get annoyed when you point out that they're hurting you.
And then they blame you when they hurt you.

[1:33:54] That makes a lot of sense. I mean, that's probably why I don't have the best, relationship with my mom and the in-laws too.

[1:34:03] So yeah, I mean, just to speak to your mom, since we know her more directly, your wife's not on the call, but to speak to your mom, she has no bad feelings about what she did, right?
So you can't trust her because she's done significant harm to you.
And I'm sure she did some good too, but we're talking about the negatives right so she's done some significant harm to you it doesn't bother her it doesn't trouble her she feels no need to apologize and if you were to bring it up she'd just be annoyed and it would like make no sense to her does that make sense.

[1:34:34] Yeah and i've thought about bringing it up to her and i'm not sure what her reaction would be but i don't think.

[1:34:42] You were absolutely certain you absolutely are certain what her reaction would be what would her reaction be you know this because you've known the woman for over three decades you know exactly what her reaction would be which is why you haven't done it. What would her reaction be?

[1:34:55] Indifference, dismissiveness.

[1:34:57] It's all in the past, long time ago. Everybody makes mistakes.
I'm not perfect. I'm not the worst mother in the world. Get over it, deal with it, move it on. You're in your 30s.
Whatever, just dismissal and who cares and move on and let's get back to talking about the dog.

[1:35:10] She did the best she could with the knowledge she had, right?

[1:35:13] Yeah, all of these magic spells that people put in place of actually having a conscience, right? Yeah.
So, you can't bond with people who don't have a conscience, because a bond is trust.
A bond is the security of knowing the other person will look out for your best interests with every fiber of their being.
But if you want to look out for someone's best interests, then you've got to know them very well.
which means it's got to be about them not you right like i'm sure you remember at the beginning of this conversation how did i start out the conversation i said what are you looking for what would be helpful i spent the first i don't know 40 minutes mostly just asking questions and listening right yeah.

[1:36:13] As you would.

[1:36:14] Yeah well but not most people don't right that's why you're calling me right most people don't right now i think you trust that i'm going to work every, fiber of my mental muscles to try and provide the most value to you, even if even if it can be unpleasant at times does that make sense absolutely and you've i don't know you probably listened to you said you've listened to these call-in shows before right and i think you've noticed that i work very hard people do get a lot of benefit out of them and i don't put people down i don't insult them i don't yell at them you know what i mean i get yelling i'm passionate or whatever but yell at people does that make sense yeah so you call me because you trust that it's going to be about you that it's going to be helpful and that i'm going to be, uh honest and direct.

[1:37:06] Yeah which is why i didn't you know call my mom and have a conversation about what happened in the past i called you instead right.

[1:37:17] Right and i heard that when i started asking you about your childhood i heard that oh here we go.

[1:37:23] Did you remember that yeah well i knew i was going to talk about it so i had to you know unpack all that stuff well.

[1:37:34] I did ask you what what you wanted to talk about, and you didn't bring up your childhood, so I went there. But that's fine. That's fine.
So because I have a conscience and I really work hard to be as responsible as I can in the communications that I have in these matters, because these are very big, delicate, sensitive matters, right?
So I work to be, I'm not trying to praise myself.
What I'm trying to do is say that I work very hard to try and be as responsible as I can in these communications. Because, you know, you're putting a lot of trust in me, right?
You're opening up your heart and your mind and your history and all of that and talking about some of the stuff that's really, really hard to talk about.
So I'm sort of very, very aware of that.

[1:38:14] And so I think that there's a trust, especially now I've been doing it for like, I don't know, 17, 18 years. So there's kind of a trust in what I do.
and and most of that trust has to do with i mean gosh if i said something really terrible to someone i kind of insulted them or i don't know re-triggered their childhood in some negative way or whatever uh i'd feel like i'd feel absolutely terrible i mean you've heard me if i guess something wrong oh i'm so sorry and you know and you've heard me very tentative like if i say anything that's incorrect you know correct me and and and let me know the better way to to approach and so on, right?
So the bond is possible if people have a conscience.
Because if people don't have a conscience, they don't know when they're hurting you, and they just act.
And if they don't know when they're hurting you, then they can't know when they're helping you, which means they're fundamentally indifferent to you.
And if people are fundamentally indifferent to you, You can't have a bond. Does that make sense?

[1:39:11] Yeah, that's something that's crossed my mind.
Surely my mom has indifference towards me, given the way she's treated me in the past.

[1:39:25] Sorry, can you say that again? I wasn't sure I caught that.

[1:39:28] Oh, surely my mom is indifferent towards me, given that.

[1:39:33] Sorry, it's different or indifferent? I wasn't sure.

[1:39:36] I'm sorry, indifferent towards me, given how she's treated me in the past.

[1:39:44] Well, certainly your best interest is not in her mind.
And it's not even in the battle with someone else. Is that right?

[1:39:54] No, no. It's not even like.

[1:39:56] Oh, I really want to help you, but there's this other thing.
I'd really like to stay in parent, but I want to go to the bar.
It's just like, oh, I'm going to the bar, right? or wherever she was going on those pizza nights, right?

[1:40:06] Oh, yeah. Does that make sense? Who knows?

[1:40:09] Well, no, we know, right? So it's not even half and half. It's not like half you, half her, or 60-40.
It's like 100% her, 0% you. She wants to go and pursue some guy in America.
She just leaves you with the grandparents, right? And you don't see her for a year or more.

[1:40:26] Right.

[1:40:27] So you can't bond with people people who don't recognize your needs and preferences because you can't trust them.

[1:40:39] And because I don't trust my mom, I haven't been able to bond with her after all these years. Is that all right?

[1:40:47] No, it's not like you haven't been able to, like it's deficient. It's impossible.
It's not like, well, if you found another approach or another route, right?
It'd be like, you know, I've been standing here in a field for three days flapping my arms, but I haven't been able to fly yet, right? That wouldn't be the right way to put it, right?

[1:41:05] Oh, isn't this like trying to put a – what is this?
It's like a lock made out of sand and a key also made out of sand.
I remember you were talking about this on one of your shows, and it's impossible to do.

[1:41:19] Yeah, you can't bond with people who don't have empathy, who aren't curious about you, who don't know what's best for you, and who don't care if they hurt you. How could you possibly bond with someone like that?

[1:41:33] Right.
like the blocks aren't even there to form a bound a bond it's not even a matter of getting there it's just a matter of there's nothing to get to even get there that makes sense.

[1:41:52] Yeah i mean because you're not there in their calculations other than convenience like oh you know let's let's i need someone to go for brunch with let's go for brunch it's nice i like to be seen out with my son it It makes me look like a good mother, and it's nice to, you know, spend time with my son.
And, you know, the fact that you're bored by what she talks about is really, really important.
Like, to be bored by someone who claims to love you is a huge sign that they lack empathy.
I mean, do you think your mother knows that you're bored about the weather and the dog?

[1:42:34] She might not be conscious of it, but then again, she doesn't have a conscience, so.

[1:42:45] Does she know you're bored?

[1:42:48] Yeah. Oh, yeah.

[1:42:49] Okay, so if you know.

[1:42:50] How does she know you're bored?

[1:42:51] I'm not disagreeing, but how does she know you're bored?

[1:42:54] Well, I'm not really, like, responding in a genuine manner, so.

[1:43:02] No, no, that would be an indication, but that doesn't mean that she gets it.

[1:43:09] Oh, how does she know that I'm bored?

[1:43:12] Yeah, not how would someone with a conscience know that you're bored.
How does she know that you're bored?

[1:43:19] I guess the way I would describe it is kind of like a railroad.
It would just keep going, and this is someone without a conscience, Just whereas someone with a conscience who would be like, oh, maybe we can go here. Maybe we can go there.
Tell me more about this. You know, that's kind of the contrast between the two, if that makes any sense.

[1:43:41] Okay. So does she know, has she processed or has it even crossed her mind that you might be bored by her conversation?

[1:43:49] No.

[1:43:52] Okay. So she doesn't even notice and hasn't noticed for years or decades that you're bored by her conversation.

[1:44:01] Yeah because she just keeps going so.

[1:44:05] You're just a prop you're not there she doesn't care she doesn't care it matters when we're talking it should matter to us if the other person is interested shouldn't it.

[1:44:14] Well yeah of course i mean if you're trying to engage someone in conversation you want them to think about what you're saying and respond in in their own genuine human way not just oh yeah uh-huh oh that's great you know these kind of non-answers.

[1:44:33] So, I mean, when I'm talking to just about anyone, you know, if I'm driving someplace with my daughter and I'm on some kick about, I don't know, something that I'm interested in, I will say to my daughter, is this interesting to you?
Like, I just recently picked up a book on the 17 ways to get to heaven for Catholics or whatever because I thought it was very interesting.
And I'm reading it to my daughter and I'm like, is this interesting to you?
Like, I just, I really want to make sure.
And, you know, she knows she can tell me if, you know, it doesn't really grab me or whatever. That's totally fine, right?

[1:45:03] Oh, right. The feedback thing.

[1:45:05] There's no feedback. Yeah.

[1:45:08] And that's another, okay. That's exactly my problem with the in-laws too, is that there's no feedback from them. Same with my mom.

[1:45:20] Right. So how are you going to give feedback to your kids?

[1:45:26] Well by asking them what do you think of this you know like just engage with them, I don't know what else to say just be there be present in the moment with them.

[1:45:45] But you say that like that's just an easy thing like you know well if I happen to be babysitting kids who speak Japanese I'll just speak Japanese niece yeah because you have in your life it's totally fine if people don't care about you, You know, let me tell you, like, so let's say that my daughter, you know, gets married. Hopefully she will get married to some guy, right?
And let's say, I don't know, I win the lottery and I want to buy them a house, right?

[1:46:22] Yeah.

[1:46:23] And my son-in-law says, no, I don't want you to buy me a house. What would I do?

[1:46:31] Ask why you don't want me to buy you a house.

[1:46:34] Yeah, I mean, let's sit down. Tell me about it. I mean, I'm not saying this so that I can buy you a house. I'm saying this because I genuinely know and understand.
Most people ask so that they can overcome your free will, right?
So if you go into a car dealership and you say, well, I don't want to buy this car, they say, oh, why not?
Oh, it's too expensive. Oh, we can knock the price down a little.
Oh, it doesn't have leather seats.
Oh, you know, leather is so overrated. Plus, in this sunshine, it's going to get really hard to sit on.
You really don't want leather. or I'm sort of embarrassed to sell it in this climate. Whatever, right?
Like, most people will ask you, you know, if you ask some woman out, and she says no, you say, oh, well, why not?
So that you can overcome her objections and get her to do what you want, right?
You know, like you examine a broken piece of machinery in order to fix it, and most people will ask. But to actually ask people genuine questions, questions.
Because like, I'm not trying to get you to do anything. You know that, right? I'm not trying to get you to change your behavior.
I'm not trying to get you to donate money. I'm just genuinely trying to figure out your life and see if I can provide some value.
So you have in your life, most of the people, don't seem to have a conscience and don't seem to care what's going on on your side of the the conversation.

[1:48:02] No, they really don't.

[1:48:05] And you haven't even been there as yet for your wife, and she hasn't been there as yet for you, but then you think it's going to be fine with your kids.

[1:48:17] And what do you mean, be there for my wife?

[1:48:25] Well, remember we talked about the babysitter who frightened your children?

[1:48:30] Right.

[1:48:31] Okay. okay, these people did some serious harm to your wife, and you're fine with them.
Now, I'm not saying you go and yell at them or anything like that, but have you ever said to your wife, I really hate that they did this harm to you?

[1:48:49] I've actually brought up the possibility of defooing from them, as well as with my mom.

[1:49:00] And has she done that with you i mean in terms of saying i really hate what your mom did to you.

[1:49:08] Uh no no i don't think she's as of as aware of the totality of things as as i am now, or at least in in the in like a moral sense of you know these these people did some really really evil stuff.
And I'm not trying to downplay it by saying it in that manner.
I'm just saying it like that.

[1:49:39] Now, I did ask earlier, and I'm not trying to catch you out.
I'm just telling you how I'm confused.
I did ask, this is one of the first questions I asked was, what does your wife think of your mother? And you said, she likes her.
Do you remember that?

[1:49:59] I do.

[1:50:00] And again, I'm not trying to catch you out of me, and I'm just telling you where I'm confused.
And then I did ask, maybe, I did say, well, maybe she doesn't know all that happened. And you said, no, no, she knows.
Like, she knows that I was abandoned. She knows this. She knows that, right?

[1:50:14] Right. There's no judgment based on what happened in the past.
It's kind of just like, yeah, that happened.

[1:50:24] You mean from her or you?

[1:50:26] From her.

[1:50:29] And that's because she doesn't want to deal with her parents right.

[1:50:38] That's right, because if she were to deal with her parents or to at least recognize what happened to me was bad then yeah she wouldn't be acknowledging that what happened to her was also bad and, And I don't know why.

[1:51:01] Sorry, I don't know why.

[1:51:07] Why she would, I guess, not confront them about it or not confront them about it.

[1:51:22] It so you don't know why your wife wouldn't talk to her parents about some of the wrongs they did is that right that's.

[1:51:30] Right that's right yeah you put it much better yeah.

[1:51:32] Except you do know that because you love her and you care about her and you know her so why doesn't she do it.

[1:51:46] Well, I would think that if she were to do it, it would mean the end of their relationship.

[1:51:55] Is that what she believes, do you think? It doesn't necessarily mean that, but...

[1:52:02] That's...

[1:52:02] It can actually mean the beginning of a relationship, because you're not lying anymore.

[1:52:12] Yeah, and that may be the truth.

Unmasking the Truth: Facing Family Realities

[1:52:13] Right, it's just, all it is is, you know, people have all this thing about defooing.
It's just telling the truth.
This hurt me and I'm upset by it. And I want to talk about it.
That's just telling the truth, right? Isn't it? It's just telling the truth.
People get all mad at me, like, because I just tell people, you know, it might be worthwhile telling the truth.
Or at least be conscious of the fact that you're lying out of fear.

[1:52:37] So then, if that's true, but... Well, sorry, let me back up.
How can that be true if they don't have a conscience like we established earlier?

[1:52:52] How can it be true that it could be the beginning of a relationship?

[1:52:55] Right. Right, if they don't have a conscience.

[1:53:00] Well, they haven't shown, at least as far as I can tell, they haven't shown any evidence of a conscience.
But also, you and your wife have been colluding at the cover-up.
if you change the variables on one side of the equation, you change the variables on the other side.
Right? If you're walking up to some guy and you hold out your hand to shake his hand, and he doesn't hold out his hand, you don't just mind shaking his hand, right?
You don't grab his hand and make him shake your hand. You've got to change what you're doing, right? Because he's changed what he's doing.
Maybe it's possible that they have been avoiding their own childhood pain, and maybe if your wife brings up her childhood pain, it connects with your parents.
I mean, somebody said the other day in a call-in that they remembered, and I remember this, too.
A mom did call in. A mom called in and said, you know, my son listens to your show.
He confronted me, and we had the most incredible conversation. I'm going into therapy.

[1:54:04] So you don't really know until you confront them about it.

[1:54:08] Well, if you do know, for sure, it's usually because you've done it, right?

The Power of Authenticity and Empathy

[1:54:15] Like, you don't know if you can sing until you open your mouth and try to sing, right?

[1:54:28] But if you have a standard in your life, which is out of fear, I will lie and hide the truth about myself.
That's a pretty powerful standard. Now, thinking that you can have two completely split personalities is not valid.
It's not true. It's not something that works.
Right? So if you say, well, a relationship, say, with my family of origin, where I lie and hide the truth about myself is a good relationship and worth keeping.
Also, a relationship with my children where I'm honest and open and direct and don't lie and don't hide who I am is also a good relationship.
That's really splitting yourself in two and setting yourself at war with yourself, isn't it?

[1:55:39] Sorry i'm yeah that's right still here i wasn't sure if we lost connection there does sometimes happen and also then if you say well it's really important to be honest and direct with people i care about what happens when your parents and your children are in the same room.

[1:56:03] Yeah and that's something I thought about too I guess it'd be real awkward.

[1:56:16] Well again to empathy what would your children see, they'd see you completely change.

[1:56:28] Right like a brand new person's there.

[1:56:31] Well no a brand the person they know isn't there that's what they would see.

[1:56:43] Oh somebody else entirely well.

[1:56:46] Somebody who's frightened somebody who conforms somebody who lies somebody who laughs at things somebody who doesn't stand up for himself somebody who's kind kind of pushed around and bowed down and, right?
Somebody has no authority.
Somebody who's easily chased out of the home of his own skin, right?

[1:57:10] Yeah.
So until the parents are confronted, you know, on my wife's side and on my side too, then it's...

[1:57:30] You can't teach your children something that you practice the opposite of. Did you see what I mean?

[1:57:39] Right. Teach them English, but have them speak Japanese.

[1:57:45] Well, that's not quite... I'm sorry to be annoying about your analogies.
At least that's not quite the right thing, though, because you can teach a kid two different languages.
But if you are an empty conformist and you say to your children, it's super important that you stand up for yourself and think for yourself and don't just go along with what other people want, but then that's all they see you doing, that really messes kids up, right?

[1:58:12] Right, because then they can't trust you and form a bond with you.

[1:58:15] Right. because having a conscience also is to know when your behavior is confusing to others.
Right? Having a conscience is how you overcome hypocrisy.
Hypocrisy is when you don't particularly care when your actions don't match your words or the opposite of your words.
And when you're a parent, hypocrisy is when you don't care how much that messes up your kids.
Right? If I said to my daughter, or it's really important to speak up when it's reasonably safe to do so and you know that you're in the right.
And then I didn't do that.
Then she would notice that and it would be kind of pathetic, right?

[1:59:01] Yeah, she would see you in a completely different light.

[1:59:03] Well, it would be sad, right? I mean, not super long ago, I went to swimming with my daughter, and there were two hot tubs in the swimming pool, like one at either end.
And there was a couple groping each other in the other hot tub.
I think they were drunk or something like that. And then there was a mother who was swearing at them. You know, you effing degenerates, it's effing disgusting.
Now, this mother had little kids with her, right?
And then she turns to me and she says, can you believe what these people are doing, right?

[1:59:39] And I said, yeah.

[1:59:40] That's not good. You know, I don't appreciate the swearing.

[1:59:44] Yeah, yeah. And take a look in the mirror first.

[1:59:47] No, and she's like, well, my kids have heard it all before. And I said, my daughter hasn't, so please, don't do it.
And she did apologize to her credit. I mean, minor credit, I guess, right?
And we talked about whether we should call security, whether we should go and confront the couple who was making out, and not just kissing, but like, you know, some pretty gropey stuff, in the other hot tub.
And we talked about what we should do. Because I, you know, I wasn't going to do something that would be hugely embarrassing for her.
And anyway, so the other woman said, I'm calling security, right?
And then I said, okay, well, security's going to handle it. There's no one else here. The place closes in 50 minutes. We might as well go.
Now, I don't know, was it the right or wrong thing to do? I don't know.
I assume that the people were on drugs or, I mean, to be that inappropriate in a pool area where there are kids around, I assume that the people are not in their sober minds.

[2:00:54] Sounds like they're not mentally well either.

[2:00:56] There well it could be it could be any number of things but it's not my job to police the hot tub right and they weren't harming i mean they weren't harming children directly obviously if they were harming children directly that would be something else right and security was coming the place was closing up and i is there really any point confronting people who are on drugs which i'm pretty sure they were probably not plus it does introduce a fair amount of volatility into the the situation right if people are on drugs they're distant their inhibitors are down plus they're you know horny which means that they're further in disinhibited right they could have been drunk there could be any number of things that you know then you could end up getting into some kind of crazy fight and like that's not worth it because not my swimming pool right obviously so i mean so i'm just pointing out like if i had just slunk away when this woman was swearing away and like just oh let's just leave right then you know i'm a guy who tries to stand up for something decent and, well, it wouldn't be ideal, right?
If she was young, like very young, I wouldn't have asked her what we should do. I would have just made the decision.
But she saw me stand up to the mother who was swearing and then we talked about it.
We decided to let security handle the couple who was making out and we left.
Now, I don't know, is that ideal? Is that not ideal? But the important thing is we had the discussion.

[2:02:21] Right, you're not looking for the perfect solution.

[2:02:24] You can't know. You can't ever know, right? You just have to weigh your probabilities, right?
I mean, maybe this would have been a life-changing moment for the couple in the hot tub, and they would have learned to find Jesus and, I don't know, put their pants back on or whatever they were doing.
Right, it wasn't that bad, obviously, but I don't know. Or maybe I would have gotten into some crazy fistfight and had a brain injury. I don't know, right? Right?
But, you know, we sort of weighed the probabilities and I think we did something that we were both satisfied with.
But I didn't ask her, should I confront the woman who's swearing in front of her and her own little kids? Right? So I did confront her.

[2:03:02] And she was, and I did sympathize with her having kids in this situation and all that.
Right? Anyway, so she stormed off to go and get security and I felt the problem was, and there was no one else to be harmed.
So, I mean, my sort of point is that And I did stand up for something that I could reasonably affect, which was the woman who was swearing in front of her kids and my daughter.
And, you know, then we had a discussion about what the best thing to do is or not.
And we were both satisfied by that, right?
And the other thing, too, is because now she's older, I can't just go storming around on my moral crusades because she's involved and she's aware and she's intelligent and she has good perspectives and arguments and opinions and so on.
So I can't just act as if I'm the only one that affects anymore.
Anyway, but if you are going to sit there and say, you know, kids, it's really, really important, you've got to tell the truth, right?
Now, at some point, your kids will hear you complaining about your parents, and then your parents will call, and you'll be all sugar and sweetness, right?
Or they'll sense that something's wrong, and they'll say, well, wait a minute.
Why do mom and dad want us to tell the truth, but they don't tell the truth to their own parents?

[2:04:24] Right, and I'm sure they're going to ask, like, you know, what's the origin story of how I got here, and our pasts and whatnot.
So it's going to come up eventually, unavoidable.

[2:04:39] Yeah, of course. Of course. And then you have a question, right?
so if you say to your kids what I mean in some age appropriate manner right you say to your kids what you said to me over the course of this conversation, will your kids like your parents, let's just talk about your mom right will your kids really like your mom if they love you and your mom did you some harm that she's never acknowledged or apologized for.

[2:05:07] Well no they'll be off put by her yeah.

[2:05:10] They won't the more they love you you the less they'll like her right particularly when they see her continuing to do you harm in the present because this isn't all about what happened when you were three right or eight, it's right now right now when you're in conversation with your mom or in the presence of your mom you dissociate because you're bored and you can't talk about what's honest and you can't talk about what's on your mind and you can't be direct right you can't be yourself right Right?

[2:05:38] Absolutely.

[2:05:39] So true. They will dislike what your mother does to you, and they will not respect you for letting her do it.
I mean, do you respect your mother?

[2:05:53] No, I don't. Right. No.

[2:05:58] But you'll still defer to her. And so your kids will see you deferring to someone they know you don't respect or even like that much.
and that will make you look weak and it will make all of your moral instructions turn to ash in your mouth.

[2:06:14] And defer to her in what way exactly?

[2:06:17] You don't tell the truth.

[2:06:18] Oh, I see.

[2:06:19] You're not direct.
They, look, here's the thing. You know, I'll tell you this about parenthood, right?
Kids are like x-ray machines. They see everything about you.
You got a whole world to deal with. They just deal with you. you.
Kids are laser focused on their parents. They know everything about you.
And so when your mom calls or your mom comes over, they'll see the change in your body posture. They'll hear the emptiness in your voice.
They'll see you rolling your eyes. They'll see you scrolling through your phone while pretending to be on a conversation with her.
They'll see all of this. Then they'll see that you don't particularly enjoy it, but you put up with it.
They'll see how you change, and they'll see the after effect of it, how long it takes for you to get back into your own skin after spending your time dissociating with your mother.
They'll see all of that. And you may think you can hide things from your kids. Spoiler, you can't.

[2:07:21] Why would you write? Why would you want to?

[2:07:23] Well, you would want to.

[2:07:27] Right, unless you've confronted that past trauma.

[2:07:33] I mean, do you want your kids to see you lying, dissociating, and falsifying your entire existence because you're afraid?

The High Cost of Falsifying Existence

[2:07:44] No absolutely not but.

[2:07:46] They will, and this is why I think there's some anxiety probably in both of you if you're committed to peaceful parenting to really connecting with people and you have people who cause you to disconnect from yourself because your parents if you don't have a strong direct and open relationship with your parents your parents will be between you and your children, because your parents will cause you to dissociate from yourself while you're around your children, even if you're not in conversation with your parents.
You'll be thinking about them, something that happened yesterday, maybe you got a text that's bothering you, and for the next hour you're distracted. Do you see what I mean?

[2:08:33] And if you're distracted, you're not paying attention to the children, right?

[2:08:37] Yeah, you're gone. You're gone. And then if you get randomly distracted, can they connect with you? Can they bond as well? Can they trust?

[2:08:50] Well, it's funny you bring that up because I've always wondered why I tend to dissociate at certain times.
And, well, that just made it crystal clear.

[2:09:02] Because your mother's empty, it sounds like, and it sounds like your in-laws to some degree as well. because it sounds like your mother's kind of empty.
You have to empty out too.
That's just a rule. You can't be deeper than the shallowest person around you in your life as a whole.
You can't be deeper than the shallowest person around you.

[2:09:27] Yeah, I think that's true no matter where you go. I don't think it's exclusively familial.
I've also experienced this in coworkers too. They'll just be yapping away and there's nothing there.
They just yap on.

[2:09:43] Yeah, and I can do, honestly, I can do that for a little bit.
I can do that for a little bit.
I can do a little small talk, a little bit of, you know, weathering dogs.
Yeah, fine. And after that, I'm like, yeah, I'm done.
No, life's short. I'm not doing this.

[2:09:55] Right.

[2:09:55] And I'll just bring up some big topic. It's just, that's how I roll.
Like, you know, it's like, if you ever go snorkeling, you swim out to where the good snorkeling is, and then you dive down.
I'll do a little swimming on the surface, but I'm there to see the fish, man. I'm there to see the coral. I'm going down.

[2:10:12] Right, and you can't live your life on the surface.

[2:10:15] No, you can't.

[2:10:16] It's terrible.

[2:10:17] No, you can't.
So, I think that's, you know, if you really, really want to connect with your kids, and you want to do what's best for your kids, what's best for your kids is everything that keeps you connected to your kids.
Now, the stress of starting a whole new career with no experience, that's not going to have you connected with your kids, I think.
and if you have people who are regularly coming into your life either physically or mentally who cause you to dissociate that's not what's best for your kids and it's you know life gets real simple when you're a parent right it's just best it's just good for my kids is it good for my kids like so you know my my father right oh uh uh should i should i have a relationship with my my father be like okay is that good for my daughter, Okay. Like, I'm not telling you what to do. I'm just telling from my experience, right?

[2:11:18] No, and I mean, I've thought about that too, you know, through your shows.
You've said that before, where life becomes infinitely easier when you have children. It's either, it's pretty much yes or no.
And the question is always, is it good for my kids? Yeah.

[2:11:34] I mean, I honestly can't imagine having a relationship with someone who didn't also have a relationship with my daughter.
I mean, the people I'm friends with are also friends with my daughter.
And I'm friends with their kids, too.

[2:11:58] Oh, as in they, like, engage your daughter in conversation and ask her?

[2:12:02] I mean, you know, just, you know, talking at eye level and there's someone tugging on your, you know, your trouser leg or whatever.
Like, I mean, if you want to hang with me, great.
But you've got to have some kind of relationship with my daughter because I'm not going to have a relationship with you and exclude her.

[2:12:24] Right. It's a package.

[2:12:26] Yeah, any more than I would go to a friend's house who has kids and ignore their kids.
I mean, I assume you wouldn't have a relationship with a friend who never spoke to your wife, would you?
comes over and he's just like won't talk to your wife and that'd be kind of weird.

[2:12:59] Well it's funny you bring that up i used to have a best friend i say best friend but, look looking at at how the relationship was it wasn't actually i don't think that the friendship part was really there at all but yeah i mean i broke it off with my with my former best friend when I met my girlfriend, who is now my wife.

[2:13:27] Was he ignoring her?

[2:13:29] No, he was insulting her, actually.

[2:13:31] Oh, gosh. Yeah, yeah. Well, that's, I mean, I mentioned this story before, but I had a relationship of many decades, and the person got kind of irrational when I met my wife, and he's like, I don't really want to get to know her.
You're probably just going to get divorced anyway. And I'm like, okay, bye.
welcome to the museum called the past because i'm entering the cathedral called the future so sorry not gonna work yeah.

[2:13:58] And we had just lifestyle choices that wouldn't have aligned with, the continuation of my relationship to my girlfriend at the time.

[2:14:14] Yeah, like the friends you have when you're single, if they don't embrace your life as a father and a husband, there's no future in the relationship.
This is why, you know, married couples often hang out with other married couples, and it doesn't always have to be that way.
But yeah, my primary relationship is with my wife and my daughter, and I had friends from when I was back in my single days, they just, they couldn't, They couldn't get there.
They couldn't get into that. They couldn't embrace the, I'm not a me anymore. I'm a we.
I'm not an individual. I'm a family man, which means I'm glommed onto the board.
I'm not a person with a body. I'm like an arm of a body.

[2:14:58] Yeah, and what would you talk about if you were there with them?

[2:15:03] No, I mean, I still, politics, philosophy, art, There's still stuff I can talk about, but I'm not, you know, just the Bible says it's totally right, right?
The man and the woman become one flesh.

[2:15:18] Right, bonded at the hip.

[2:15:19] Yeah, we're not separate anymore. We move in tandem. It's like life becomes a three-legged race.
I'm not a me. I haven't been a me for like 21 years, and I don't want to be a me again.
it was great being the me because me became the we but i'm no longer.

[2:15:42] Um you know it's kind of like if you live in the woods and you're totally self-sufficient and then you i don't know come to some town you get a job and you have a grocery store it's like do you ever want to just become totally self-sufficient again you do not right because that's a lot of work uh so yeah my wife does some of the stuff i'm not good at i do some of the stuff she's not not good at and together we're just like an unbeatable team and i would never want to go back to just being a me and and particularly as a father like yeah it's a it's a package deal i i would never do anything to disrespect my daughter and if there's someone around who comes between me and my daughter like you know don't let the door hit your ass on the way out man, yeah there's no higher priority there's no there's no higher priority yeah sorry there's no higher priority right your kids because they're not there by choice there's There's no higher priority.
They didn't choose to be there, and they're not choosing to stay. No higher priority.
So it's like, okay, well, I'm okay if I hang around with my mother.
Is that good for my relationship with my kid? Now, it can be fantastic, right?
You have a good relationship with a warm, caring mother. You know, I hope that my daughter will feel that having me around as a grandfather will be great for her relationship with her kids. I hope that will be the case. I'm sure it will be.
Grandparents can be wonderful for a kid.

[2:16:57] But they have to be wonderful. They have to be something that enhances and deepens and enriches the relationship.
Not something which eclipses the parent-child bond.
And the parent-child bond is based upon integrity, prioritizing the child, and trust.
And you can't have integrity if you have people in your life who you do the opposite with than what you value.
you right if you value honesty you value directness you value connection you value.

[2:17:29] Conscience right you want you you want your kids to have a conscience right, but they'll just be obeying orders okay so if you want people to have a conscience, how could you have people around that you claim to love and respect and value who don't have a conscience your kids will be like well wait a minute he wants me to have a conscience but but there's all these people in his life that he loves and respects who don't have a conscience at all. So what the hell?
And they get their way. They win. They're in charge. The kids are drawn to power, right?
They're amoral when they're young. They're drawn to power, which means they will conform, and they're always accurate about this. They always know who has the most power.
The kids will conform to whoever has the most power in the situation.
And if your parents and your wife's parents are silencing you, and causing you to betray your values, yourself, your truth, your identity, your facts, your reason, your history, and your honesty, your kids will conform to your parents, not you.

[2:18:36] Kids, they want to be the biggest, toughest, strongest, especially boys, but girls too, right?
They will conform, right? Kids are into superheroes because they're the most powerful, right?
Kids love Taylor Swift because she's everywhere and, you know, larger than life, right?
So, don't have people around as a whole.
Don't have people around who are the opposite of what you claim to value, who you defer to.

[2:19:10] Yeah.

[2:19:10] Because your kids will, especially if they're family members, your kids will cleave to them and then you'll end up raising your parents.

[2:19:21] And then nothing's changed.

[2:19:24] Yeah, you don't break the cycle. Yeah, you don't break the cycle, I think. So, I mean, this is why I've always said the same thing, right?
You've heard it a million times, right? You've got issues with people?
Talk about it with them. Give them the chance. Give them the honesty.
Give them the directness. I don't know what happens out of that, because it's free will.
But if you choose not to do that, then, you know, can you have the honest conversation with your kids and say, look, my parents did me real harm. My mom, you say for you, my mom did me real harm.
And I totally chickened out. I let her walk all over me. I let her come between me and you.
She's really in charge. I won't assert myself. And I'll just roll over every time she calls.
Even when I think about her, she comes between me and you. and I could have done something about it.
I could have been honest about it, but this has just gone on and on and I doubt I ever will.
I mean, at this point, what's the point, right? I'm never really going to stand up to her. I'm never going to tell her the truth.
I'm just going to roll over and be pushed around for the rest of my life.
But hey, you should really listen to me about how to live and what is good in this life.

[2:20:31] So if I were to, let's say, confront my mother about the past...

[2:20:37] Just be honest. Confrontation is another volatile phrase. Just, it's just a matter of telling the truth, but sorry, go ahead.

[2:20:43] I see. Okay. So if I were to tell the truth and tell her how I feel about the things that have happened, and if she, let's just say, blows up or denies or anything like this, then that relationship is over, right?

[2:21:00] I don't know. I don't know. The relationship is over when you don't want to talk to her and you're satisfied that you've said your piece.
Right. Right, so, again, I don't want to say, like, I'm sort of template, but for me, I think it was three conversations with my mother, three or four conversations with my mother, that I just, I tried hanging in there, I gritted my teeth, I faced the sandstorm, I, you know, I didn't blow up, I didn't yell at her, I didn't even raise my voice, but I was just really insistent about what I needed and what I wanted.
And after that last one, I'm like, boy, I can't, why would I put myself through this again?
Like, this is just awful. It's just horrible.

[2:21:41] And that's when you knew it was time to just sever all ties.

[2:21:45] I mean, there were no ties. No, because it was perfectly clear to me, and that's what closure is, just certainty.
It was perfectly clear to me that I could not be myself, I could not be honest, and I just didn't want to do that anymore.
I had to do that when I was a kid because I had no power, no authority, no control, no independence. minutes. I just, I don't want to lie.
I don't want to falsify. I don't want to be in the presence of someone where I have to falsify everything.
What's in that for me? I get what my mom gets out of it. She gets to pretend that, you know, things are fine or whatever, right?
And she never has to deal with anything she ever did that could be criticized.
But, you know, what's in it for me?
And I was still a single at this point, right? But it's like, okay, but why would I want to do this when I don't have to anymore? Why?
You know, be like, if you're unjustly imprisoned for 25 years, why would you go back to your prison cell?
I mean, you had to when you were unjustly imprisoned, but why would you go back?

[2:23:03] Why would I want to do this to myself? Why would I want to do this to myself?
I don't have to. There's no benefit to me. In fact, it's painful. It's horrible.
If the price of me being around this person is I can't be myself, why would I want that?
I only have a limited number of years within which to be myself, to be honest, to be direct, right?
Why would I want to give up, being myself. Not for the sake of anything, for nothing.
You know, you can't even say to your mom, hey, listen, man, I believe you can only talk so much about the dog. Like, can we move on?
That's not a horrible thing to say.

[2:23:52] Right.

Impact of Dissociation on Relationships

[2:23:55] Yeah, so then the question for me is why, well, you've already asked me this, But why did it take me so long to even get to the point of even considering being honest with her?

[2:24:11] Because you are unsupported by your wife. Because your wife isn't sitting there saying, I hate seeing you lie to your mom. Has she ever said that?

[2:24:22] No, I don't think so.

[2:24:24] Right. And that's because I assume, and that's what I said earlier, I assume that's because she's lying to her parents. Yes.
she's pretending there aren't problems or things are good or whatever when she has things that she should talk about, i mean if your wife was really hurt by something you were still doing would you want her to tell you god.

[2:24:50] I would hope so.

[2:24:51] What do you mean you would hope so you would want her to tell you yes.

[2:24:56] Yes yes i mean i would want her to tell me that.

[2:25:03] Right.
So you were, because you want to have a good relationship with your wife, if you were doing something that made her feel awful, you would desperately want her to tell you, right?

[2:25:23] Yeah.

[2:25:24] Do you see the difference between you and your parents or you and your mother?
She desperately doesn't want you to tell her.
do you know what an incredible gulf that is there's almost no bigger gulf in humanity that you desperately want to know, if you're doing something to hurt your wife and your mother desperately doesn't want you to tell her that she's hurt you and continues to hurt you, by quote making you lie.

[2:25:58] Is that why I have all these, I had all these thoughts about, you know, her death, and then the weeping thereof?
Because if she were to pass on, and had I not told her the truth, that would be forever buried. And I would have to...

[2:26:21] Yeah, I don't know. I don't know. I can't give you a clear answer, and I don't know the answer to why you might have had that sentimentality.
And given that it's kind of late, I mean, it's coming on to midnight here.
So I'm going to sort of wind things down, and I don't know. I'd need to know the whole circumstances when those thoughts were happening, what was going on in your life and your mother's life, whether it had any similarity to the past, how she dealt with her own mother's death. Like, there'd be a whole lot of stuff to go into there.
And I don't want to give you any kind of glib answers, what it's just this or that or the other.
So I don't know the answer to that, but I do think that the price of falsifying your entire existence for the sake of pleasing people without a conscience or surviving interactions with people without a conscience, the price is really high.
And again, I can't tell people what to do, obviously, but I can at least say, here's the costs and benefits, right? Right?
It's not cost-free to falsify the pain that other people have caused you and pretend that it doesn't exist. That is not a cost-free situation.
In fact, it's very costly. And unfortunately, the people who pay the highest price are your kids.

[2:27:33] Uh steph i'm i'm so sorry to bring up a new topic i know it's late so um there was something else i wanted to ask you uh but i know we're kind of wrapping up so um it's it's about my relationship with between me and my wife um i don't know how how would you like to deal with that i.

[2:27:57] Don't know No, either.

[2:28:01] Well i mean if we're pressed for time then you know no.

[2:28:05] I mean you you this you can always ask right don't don't waste more time by dodging around the ask you just ask and we'll see if we could do anything quick.

[2:28:12] Okay yeah let me ask you this so every now and again we'll run into these episodes let's call them where i will just completely shut down and not talk to my wife for or sometimes a day, you know.
I really need to figure this out, because it's happening, you know.
It doesn't happen every month, maybe like three, four times a year.
And I really need to resolve this before we get to have our child, because I can't just shut down like this and give her like the cold shoulder.
So I got to figure out what's going on there.

[2:28:50] Also, it's a habit that will happen with your kids too.

[2:28:57] Um so that that's my question is what what do i do about this the reaction that i have this something triggers in me that i just shut down entirely.

[2:29:07] Well i mean but that's your relationship with your mother isn't your relationship with your mother but you just shut down.

[2:29:17] It's yeah i mean it's like it's like i'm not even there.

[2:29:19] Yeah like yeah so i mean this i was This is why this came up right after I said there's a high price to be paid for dissociation.
So you have relationships in your life where you dissociate.
And they're not real relationships as far as I would define them.
But yeah, you have people proximity where you dissociate. So that's an option for you. That's the thing.
That is of value to you.
Because it's a survival mechanism for your mother, maybe for your in-laws, or maybe there's other people, I don't know.
But you have on the table something which is dissociation.
And I don't do that. I don't have that on the table.
I mean, it's not like I never dissociate. Yeah, yeah, I get that, right? I mean, sometimes I'll just space out daydreaming or whatever, whatever, right?
That's not really dissociating. But it's not something that is an option for me that's ever acceptable.
Like if I notice that I'm really dissociated, then I'll just be like, oh my God, I got to solve this and get back to the people around me and get back to reality, right?
But you have an essential survival mechanism called dealing with your mother called dissociation, right? Which you don't talk about the past.
You don't talk about anything interesting.
You don't, you know, you pretend that she's a parent when she wasn't.
She didn't parent you, right?

[2:30:36] She didn't give you.

[2:30:38] That's why I asked. Did she give you any instruction or guidance or values or virtues or wisdom? She didn't parent you at all.
As far as I can tell, you said you can't remember a single important conversation you've ever had with her other than she caught you smoking weed one time and yelled at you, right?
Okay, so she didn't parent you. And you're treating her like she's a parent, like she gets all the respect of a parent when she didn't actually parent you.

[2:31:06] So, if she didn't parent you, she's just some aging woman you lived with when you were younger.
You know, like if you have a brother, ah, we're brothers, you know, brothers in arms, we're brothers. It's like, I don't know, maybe he's just some jerk you happen to grow up with.
Right? Because if he's not acting like a brother or a sibling, like he's not loyal to you, he's not, you know, putting you first, you're not putting him first, you don't particularly like each other, he puts you down, he insults you. He was mean to you when you were young.
Okay, it's just some asshole you happen to grow up with.
If he's not acting like a brother, I'm not going to give the label brother.
My mother didn't act like a mother. Your mother didn't act much like a mother, so you don't get the label.
My father did not father me.
He didn't give me any advice. He didn't give me any useful wisdom.
He didn't give me any, he couldn't model behavior that I wanted to emulate.
late, he just, you know, snapped at me because I was slurping my tea and made me scrub the rust from the roof of his garage.
Just a sour-faced sperm donor.

[2:32:19] It's not my father. And I know that now because I've been a father.
I'm actually, I am a father and I've been a father 15 and a half years straight.
I stay at home father too.
I know what a father is and he ain't that.
I know what a mother is.
And my mom ain't that.
So, now I know what those things are.
For real. I'm not going to give the label to people who are just around.

[2:33:04] Unless they've earned it, right?

[2:33:07] Well, no, just because they're around. Yeah, I'm going to give it to the people who've earned it, right?
I mean, if you win a million dollars in the lottery, you're going to split it with everyone in the shop? Nope. You bought the ticket, right?
You earned it, so to speak.

[2:33:29] So you have this thing on the table called, well, I could just space out.
you don't have that it's not that's not acceptable I won't do that in a relationship, because it's harmful to me it's harmful to the other person and it erodes trust it erodes pair bonding, Pair bonding is, you're number one in my life.
And when you dissociate and you won't talk to your wife for the whole day, you're saying, there's something more important than you in my life.
And that is the habits that you have with regards to your mom.
You know, every man, and I'm sorry to be annoying because I'm not saying you haven't grown up, but every man to reach sort of your final boss of maturity, you have to choose, your wife over your mother you have to choose your children over your parents, that's becoming a husband and a father, anything that comes between me and my wife is expendable anything that comes between me and my daughter is expendable and it's not even like close to it's like nope done, I mean I'll talk about it with people I think this is getting in between but my family knows that my loyalty is a million percent with them.

[2:34:48] And if the price of being around your mother is dissociation, because you're not being honest, then dissociation is still the tool you need on the table.
Because you've got to deal with your mother, and then that tool will get used against your wife, and it will erode.
I mean, you don't get any closer to your mother, you just get further away from your wife, if that makes sense.
It's a huge loss. It's a massive net loss.

The Power of Telling the Truth

[2:35:11] And your mother should never, ever force you to lie, ever force you to misrepresent yourself, ever force you to falsify your experience, your life, and your existence.
No one who ever cares about you should ever make you falsify your existence because if they cared about you, they know exactly how harmful that is to you and to everyone around you.
And if your mother cared about you, she would never force you to falsify your existence.
She'd never force you to dissociate. She'd never force you to pretend to be interested in the weather and the fucking dog.

[2:35:53] But she doesn't care. She just wants what she wants, doesn't even think about how it affects you. It doesn't matter to her.
Like she wanted to go chase some guy and abandon you to your grandparents in the ass-end of Russia for a year.
Well, she was interested in some guy. Now she's going to get old.
Oh, you've got to come spend time with me. It's like, no, you call that guy.
You know, just call that guy.
because you chose him right over me, just call that guy well he's not around anymore yeah see how that works it's too bad sorry I wish you'd made better decisions but you didn't but you didn't, my mom also was chasing guys all up and down the ass end of the universe flew in here flew to Texas flew all the place trying to land some husband and left me alone for a week or two, sometimes with like 20 bucks. Good luck, kid.
Okay, well, call these guys. You're lonely, call them. Well, they're not around anymore. Yeah, funny how that works, isn't it?

[2:37:07] You chased after nothing and you ended up with nothing. You caught what you were aiming for, right?
Yeah, so you just like, the association would say, say, well, I'm not going to allow myself to dissociate.
But that's got to be universal. Say, I'm not going to allow myself to dissociate.
So you're around your mom and you're dissociating and she's talking about the weather and the dog and you're bored out of your gourd.
You say, yeah, I'm bored. You know, in fact, I've been bored forever.
I really, you know, mom, I cannot for the life of me remember the last substantial conversation we had about something that, it's just really boring.
I've got to be honest with you.
Now, all she's getting, she's all huffy and upset that and how how dare you and why didn't you say something well i didn't say something because you're going to have exactly this kind of reaction but i'm just tired i'm tired of lying, but isn't that authenticity isn't that honesty isn't that directness i'm just i'm tired of lying and i'm not going to model lying for my kids and i'm you know i'm not going to have dissociation on the table because it harms my relationship with my wife does that make sense oh.

[2:38:07] That's that's brilliant stuff that is absolutely brilliant.

[2:38:11] Yeah just tell the truth you know i mean i'm trying to tell you the truth at least as far as i see it or i think it's principled isn't that nice isn't that nice for you oh it's liberating yeah so tell the truth fantastic tell the truth and you'll get closer to the good people and the bad people well they can take a long walk off a short pier all right will you keep me posted about how things are going absolutely thanks man for a really really really great conversation.
I really do appreciate it. You did a fantastic job. And, you know, big, big hug to your wife for the exciting journey you guys are on.
I'm perfectly thrilled that you're going to be a dad and I think you'll be great.

[2:38:48] Thanks, Steph. Have a good night.

[2:38:49] Take care, brother. Bye.

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