Mom Said "F U!" Freedomain Call In - Transcript

Caller's Email

Dear Stefan,

I am a 37-year-old woman and I'm having trouble reconciling the current relationship I have with my mother. I was raised by a single mother. She and my father divorced when I was four. And growing up, we were very close. She was everything I thought a decent mother should be. She was very loving, supported, and always wanted the best for me. I considered her a friend and confidant. As I have gotten older, gotten married, and had children of my own, our relationship has taken a downward turn. I have come to realize that she is very immature and has very little self-esteem. And from incidents that have happened between me and her over the last 10 years, I have lost a lot of respect for her. I am starting to see her for who she really is and it's been a very hard realization. My mom doesn't really have a lot of people close to her in her life. Her immediate family have either passed away or she is estranged from them. And I have no brothers or sisters. So I feel like I am all she has. This puts a lot of pressure on me to keep in touch with her, plan addings for her and my kids to meet up, etc. But after a fight we had very recently, I am becoming less inclined to want to see her. I need help understanding my role in the life of my mother and what obligations I have to her. Would love to hear your perspective.

Thank you, Stefan.


Caller shares struggles with mother-daughter relationship

[0:00] Let's get to the caller, bracket S, potential. James, who do we have first?
All right. Well, we have one on and we may have another, but we'll start off with our first caller today.
And she writes, Dear Stefan, I am a 37-year-old woman and I'm having trouble reconciling the current relationship I have with my mother.
I was raised by a single mother. She and my father divorced when I was four.
And growing up, we were very close. She was everything I thought a decent mother should be. She was very loving, supported, and always wanted the best for me.
I considered her a friend and confidant.

[0:44] As I have gotten older, gotten married, and had children of my own, our relationship has taken a downward turn.
I have come to realize that she is very immature and has very little self-esteem.
And from incidents that have happened between me and her over the last 10 years, I have lost a lot of respect for her.
I am starting to see her for who she really is and it's been a very hard realization.
My mom doesn't really have a lot of people close to her in her life.
Her immediate family have either passed away or she is estranged from them.
And I have no brothers or sisters. So I feel like I am all she has.
This puts a lot of pressure on me to keep in touch with her, plan addings for her and my kids to meet up, etc.
But after a fight we had very recently, I am becoming less inclined to want to see her.
I need help understanding my role in the life of my mother and what obligations I have to her.
Would love to hear your perspective. Thank you, Stefan.
No, thank you. That is a very good, deep and honest email.
I appreciate that. Is there more? I'm sure there is. Do you want to add to that?

[1:52] Thank you so much, Stefan, for taking my call. um there's i guess so much more to add to it um and i'm actually not sure exactly where to go, Sure. Do you want me to ask? Sure, sure. That would be great. Do you have kids?
I do. I have two. Oh, congratulations. How old are they?
I have a four-year-old and a one-year-old. And definitely the second one is a lot due to you, due to listening to your call and shows over the years.
Just encourage me to have at least another one. And I'm so happy I did.
Oh, well, I appreciate that.
And it's another one of the reasons why I get censored is that I encourage people to have kids.
And, you know, there's a lot of antinatalists out there in the world, so they have a lot of power.
At least people who don't want smart people to have kids. So congratulations.
That is wonderful to hear.

[2:53] Now, I know it's kind of casting the net forward quite a ways.
But if you, when you get older and your kids are older, they're adults.
Do you want them to phone you out of a sense of depressed obligation?
No, of course not. Well, let's say that they have an issue with you.
And they will, obviously. Nobody's perfect. I'm not. You're not, right? It's going to be things that we're going to need to explain or apologize for as we parent.
What would you like them to do? And, you know, maybe they'll listen to this one day, right, when they get older. But what would you like them to do?
If they have a problem with you or something that they didn't like.
And listen, it could be because you were too good a parent, right?
Like, Mom, you raised me rational in a world that's crazy.
How am I supposed to fit in, right? Resentment or frustration.
When they see everybody else blending into the collective and they can't borg themselves, they may have some resentment, and that's something that's important to listen to and all that.
So what do you want them to do? What advice? Like, pretend that they're older now and they're listening to this.
They have an issue. what would you like to say to them about what they should do with that?

[4:08] I definitely want them to be open with me and feel comfortable about it.
Sorry, tell them like they're listening.

Emotional Impact of Avoidance and Negativity in Relationships

[4:41] And if they don't do that, but instead what they do is just kind of get avoidant and maybe anxious, maybe depressed about the relationship, I mean, how would that affect you, do you think?
I feel terrible.
I feel terrible. I feel like, what have I done wrong that they don't want to talk to me about anything?
Yeah, I feel terrible. Now, what if they did talk to you, but, I mean, your kids are still pretty young, right?
So, let me tell you how it's going to play when you get older.
I think, maybe not a guarantee, but I think this is how it's going to play when they get older.
So, when they get older, you'll want to introduce them to the things that you like to do. Let's play tennis. tennis.
Now, some of them they will enjoy, and some of them they won't.
And every now and then, what'll happen, and it's important to talk about this, but every now and then, all the parents will know what this is all about.
And, you know, kids who are honest about, people who were honest about their own experiences, kids will remember this too.
So, the kids will come, and they will go through the motions.
We all know this, right? They'll go through the motions. They will Will be there.

[6:11] Weekend at Bernie's style. Like, they'll be there, but they won't really be there. They'll come and they'll play tennis with you.
But they won't really run for the ball. They'll stare off into space. They'll be distracted.
And you say, oh, you're not enjoying this? No, that's fine. I'm enjoying it. But you know, right?

[6:29] You know that they don't want to do it, but they're kind of going through the motions, right?
And yeah, you've got to have those. You've got to have those conversations about, like, you know, if you're going to do something, then do it.
And if you decide you don't want to do it, then have that conversation, but don't be there in body but not in spirit.
That's a bad way to deal with a difference of opinion, right?
I like tennis, you don't like tennis, but you'll come, but you'll just be kind of negative and it just drags everything down.
And you know, this is, even parents can do this. I remember when I was a kid, my mom had promised me to go and see a pretty funny Scott Baio movie called Bugsy... No.
It was the one where... Bugsy Malone? I don't remember.
Anyway, it was a sort of a musical about pretend kid gangsters, where they had cream splatter guns instead of real weapons.
And it was a fun movie. It was an enjoyable movie.
And my mom had promised to take me and so when the Saturday came she didn't want to go but I was just like nope you're going because you promised and I kind of muscled her into doing it.

[7:47] And she came, and she complained, and she was negative, and she didn't like the movie, and she, you know, but I was just like, the wall of will went up, and I just shielded myself from all of that and really enjoyed the movie.
Because, you know, I was going to get something out of this, promise, right?

Going Through the Motions vs. Honest Communication

[8:02] And so, it's going to happen that your kids are going to get older, and you're going to introduce them to stuff, and they're going to go through the motions, and they're going to try and drag you down with vague negativity as their way of protesting so that you won't ask them to do it again.
And, you know, sometimes spouses will do this as well.
You know, like the husband who's resentful that the wife is asking him to do the dishes will do the dishes badly.

[8:22] And then she'll complain that he does the dishes badly. And he'll say, well, if you don't like the way I do the dishes, maybe I won't do them at all.
Right? It's just, you know, instead of having a conversation about expectations and preferences and work. I don't know why it is in general that people would much rather have a two-hour fight than a 20-minute conversation.
I've never understood that fundamentally, why people would rather have a two-hour fight than a 20-minute conversation, or maybe even a potential divorce rather than a 20-minute conversation.
Anyway, so that what I'm saying by that is, so you invite your kids over, you know, come over for a swim or, you know, come over for tennis or come over for a barbecue or, you know, I'll make you dinner or whatever.
And they're like, yeah, I guess we can come and, and they come, but they're kind of on their phones and, and, uh, they're kind of not really chatting with you.
And I mean, you really get the sense that they don't want to be there.
And if you say are you distracted is there something wrong do you not want to be here no no no I've just you know got this text I've got to finish there's important stuff going on in my relationship or whatever it is I've got something from work but you kind of know deep down.

[9:33] That they don't want to be there wouldn't that be a kind of hell.

[9:39] Yeah especially if they wouldn't even really talk to you about it.

[9:47] So does your mother know that there's times when you really don't want to be there or talk to her, well um after we kind of had a fight last weekend and i think she she probably kind of had a little bit of an idea of that before um but i think she's got a little bit more of a perspective on that now so i yeah i would have it your the way you're putting it yeah i'm sure she does, and listen i know i've been talking a lot but there's real purpose to this for once there's real no and the real purpose of this is i'm not sure that you get how different you and your mama.

[10:31] Because you would notice this with your own kids, and it would be unbearable to you. Now, either your mother doesn't notice it or doesn't care.
Because you need to get a sense of the, like, if you want to, if you want to have a communication, which I think is usually a good thing to do.
If you want to have a communication, then what you need to do is first understand what the gap is, right?
It's a gap analysis of the conversation, right? If you want to negotiate with someone who speaks Polish and you don't speak Polish, then you need to get a translator, right?
Because you need to know that there's no point you babbling at each other in languages that neither of you can follow, right?
So to understand the gap analysis, the first thing you have to understand is that your mom, well, that's the question.
Does she not notice or not care? I mean, does she not notice that you have had, I assume, significant problems with her for a long time? Does she not notice that?
Or does she notice it but not care?

[11:35] I think she doesn't care. I think that she's maybe scared to ask, scared to inquire.
Because when we had kind of a little blowout last weekend, I found out that she had been holding some resentment towards me about something that I had no idea.
I thought that a lot of it was just on my side being resentful towards her about some things.
And then I found out she was mad at me about something.
So I think she knows but just didn't want to go there because she was afraid of kind of getting mad at me about some stuff in the past and then kind of the same thing on my side.
Can you tell me a little bit more about the issues that were going on last weekend?
Um we got together with some other family members and then when we were leaving um a restaurant we started talking about politics uh not going to go into too many details but we kind of got into a little bit of an argument and um i made a comment that my mom took incredibly personally and just had it with me and started screaming at me and said um excuse my language but she She actually yelled at me, well, fuck you, and got into her car to leave.
What did you say? What did you say, though?

[13:05] I'm not blaming you. Obviously, there's no excuse for dropping the F-bomb in a relationship. But I'm just curious what it was that triggered her.
Well, I mean, and you're right. She was very triggered because I found that out just moments after I kind of followed her to her car. I've talked to her or continued the fight, I should say.
I said something to the effect of, so you want a country full of fucking idiots.
And that's when she got mad. And she was basically like, you're calling me an idiot.
Well, fuck you and went to her car.
And I ran after her because I just had enough of her getting mad at me and just turning her back and deciding to ignore me and not talk to me about it.
And I've never really done this, but I started screaming at her and I told her to stop.
I came over to her car and basically told her, you're not moving.
You know, you can't just yell at me like that and not act like a mother.
And I just, it's something I just always wanted to say to her, I was like, you need to be a mother here.
I'm not the mother, you're the mother. I'm the child, you can't yell at me like that and run away.

[14:16] Anyway, sorry, I lost my train of thought, but that was the comment.
What are you doing? What are you doing?

Swearing in a conversation leads to unproductive discussions

[14:24] Dropping the F-bomb on your mom?
Country full of fucking idiots, right? Like, once you start F-bombing people in a conflict, look, what you said is not as bad as what your mom said, because what you said was abstract F-bomb.
What she said was a personal F-you F-bomb, right?
But what are you doing trying to have a conversation where you're starting to swear around people?
Because, you know, that's not, that's never going to work, right?
It's never going to be a productive intellectual discussion.
There's not a lot of F-bombs in Plato, right?
Okay, so that's my question. And I'm not trying to throw you under the bus. We'll get to your mom.
I'm just, where is it that you are that you're escalating?
And maybe she escalated first and you kind of stepped up. But that's, you know, you said something really provocative to her.
And I guess that's my first question is, where's that coming from? Yeah.
I was mad at the previous thing that she said right before I said what I said.
And what was that? I don't know.

[15:38] We were talking about – I'm almost a little embarrassed.
We were talking about – No, no, don't be. This is important stuff.
Nothing you say here is unimportant.
And if it sounds petty, it's because it's easier to deal with the petty stuff than the root stuff. So don't worry about the pettiness. That's totally fine.
We were talking about somebody who's like a, I guess, a commentator.
And I just, and she was saying that she just agreed with a lot of stuff that he said.
And I kind of just made an offhanded comment.
Well, yeah, if you like somebody that sleeps around with, you know, a lot of women and smokes pot all day.
And she said, well, maybe I like that about him. And that's when I just was just the way she gave me this smug look like it's just so immature and it just made me so mad.
That's what I that's when I came out and said, well, I guess you want a country full of fucking idiots just like that is what I was getting at.
And she said she said that she she she liked the sleeping around pot smoking that she liked those characteristics.

[16:49] She thought that that was like funny. like it's it's cool and it just made me so so angry because it's just that the immaturity of it it's just like this is funny to you we're in the middle of like talking about serious stuff and you just have to that's what you come back with and so and you're absolutely right I agree and I'm the first one to say like telling telling talking about this fight like with my husband that yeah that wasn't the best way for me to approach it because that's not going to go anywhere but I was was just angry in the moment and that's when i was i said what i said and then she took that as i'm calling her an idiot which is not what i said i was just i was just angry and petty in the moment, well no no see i don't think that's petty at all no no no no i don't think that's petty at all, just so you know, okay it's a very deep statement right is it a commentator I would know.

[17:58] Yes, sorry. Yes, most likely. And who was it?
Oh, gosh. And that's why I don't, I'm, I'm. You don't have to say, you don't have to say, it doesn't, listen, you don't, you don't have to say you're perfectly sovereign consciousness in this conversation.
It doesn't matter, right?
So we'll, we'll just call it Bob, right? Okay.
So in that moment, it's a fundamental value revelation.
With regards to your mom so she will say oh i like what a lot of what this commentator has to say and you know i guess you have knowledge or maybe this common knowledge that this person is addicted to drugs and promiscuous is that is that fair to say i i would say definitely say that there might be some that really like this person that might disagree with me but i think wait disagree with with you about the promiscuity and the drug use are those not factual things um i think they're reasonably uh factual yes they are i will say yes okay so you then, with regards to your mom.

[19:13] She says, I like a lot of what this person has to say.
Now, you know, the old broken clock is right twice a day.
It can certainly be the case that somebody who is a drug addict and promiscuous can say some things that are useful, intelligent, insightful, maybe even wise, right?

[19:33] I agree. And I do want to say that this person is somebody I used to really follow and listen to.
And I still think highly of him in some regards. He is a very smart person.
So that's not all he is.
Anyway, yes, exactly what you're saying. Right.

Judging someone's wisdom based on their vices

[19:50] So what you're doing, though, is you're saying that if the person has a drug addiction and is promiscuous, that means that they're fundamentally unwise.
And the smarter they are, the worse it is, because they should be able to see over the the horizon of immediate pleasure to the consequences of what it is that they're doing.

[20:14] Now, does this commentator also attempt to, or do they, make kind of cool this drug stuff, you know, like the DMT fetishists and all of that?
Like, they try and make it, hey, man, it's like 20 years of therapy in one night.
If you haven't done it, you haven't opened the doors of your consciousness.

[20:34] You don't know, you know, like, what are you so scared of? Just don't be be so uptight expand your mind like do they make it a positive thing like uh oh it's nature's herb it's you know it's there to make you happy and like the the marijuana stuff or whatever right a little bit you know at least smoke at least smokers don't do that or at least they haven't done that for decades it used to be like smoking is cool smoking makes you cool smoking is is neat and nobody does that like yeah everybody smoking is a disgusting habit i'm sad to be addicted but i'm having a really really tough time quitting people will say right but we haven't got there there with the pot stuff and the pot stuff and even the promiscuity stuff has a lot to do with does that person do they say oh i have these terrible vices please don't do this or you know is it kind of like cool a little bit more cool right right right okay yeah because i mean if you can imagine like if there was some commentator out there who smoked cigarettes and was constantly talking about how cool cigarettes are and you know they they and listen nicotine is a stimulant there's a reason why writers smoked a lot because nicotine as a stimulant can really significantly enhance creativity i mean that that's a no kidding kind of thing.

[21:54] Smoking and i'm not please don't smoke right i'm just you know saying that that this is the It is a brain stimulant, and it can significantly enhance creativity.

[22:08] And so would writers say, well, if you want to be a good writer, you got to smoke, you know, really opens the doors, your creativity, it gets you in touch with your unconscious, it gives you energy to push through creative fatigue, you really will reach new heights of your writing, it's really great.
And people who don't want to do it, it just kind of square and paranoid and blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, right?
I mean, there's no no one out there who's a smoker that I know of, who still talks about it as cool, or, you know, expands your consciousness, even though nicotine, again, is a significant brain stimulant and does open up the doors to particular levels of creativity that will be tough to achieve in other ways.
You can achieve it in other ways, but it would be tough to achieve in other ways.
And so, yeah, people who are smokers are like, oh, it's a gross habit, and they're embarrassed about it and so on.
But we have, I don't know, for reasons that I fail to understand, other than it's probably communist funding propaganda, for reasons that I really don't understand.

[23:08] Part just isn't the same thing it and it should be it should be the same as smoking in fact worse in many ways than than smoking because smoking doesn't give you hallucinations it doesn't, rob you of ambition it doesn't usually become some sort of chronic thing and partly that is because, there is this cool element to part that it just maintains itself decade after decade after decade decade after, you know, smoking has fallen out of favor enormously.
But the, and even the promiscuity, right? The promiscuity could be, you know, I have this dangerous sex addiction and I end up, you know, people could say I have this dangerous sex addiction and I end up, plowing trashy, broken people, getting diseases, risking pregnancies, but I'm just addicted.

[23:58] In the same, like Ben Affleck probably wouldn't talk about how cool gambling is because, I mean, he, as far as I understand it, was a significant gambling addict.
An alcoholic won't tell you how cool drinking is. I mean, they might try a little bit when they're younger, but it doesn't really work that much when you get older and your health starts falling apart, right?

The Manipulative Power Play of Mom

[24:14] So, this is a very big issue that came up between you and your mom.
This is why it's not petty at all.
It's a very big issue, which is she's not saying, oh, yeah, no, the promiscuity and the drug addiction, that's terrible, but...
You know, there was this interesting thing that he said the other day that really had me think or whatever, right?
But she's like, no, I like him for his drug addiction and his promiscuity.
Did she say maybe I like him or she does like him?
No, she said that's maybe what I like about him. Maybe. So she did say that's maybe what I like about him.
Now, that's incredibly manipulative. Boom, right there. That's why you got angry.
That's really important.
So, she didn't say, that's what I like about him. She didn't take a stand.
She said, well, maybe that's what I like about him. That's a maneuver.
She's not being honest with you.
She's not saying, I find his drug addiction and promiscuity attractive, which doesn't speak well of me, but maybe I'm addicted to his addiction or whatever, right? And she didn't say, I do really like and respect his drug addiction and promiscuity. She said, well, maybe I do.
It's a chess move. It's not an honest statement. It's a maneuver. It's a power play.

[25:34] You nailed it. Yes, exactly. It was not an honest statement.
It was just exactly what you said. Sorry.
Yeah. Right. Right. Right, so as a power play, how did that strike you in your heart when your mom said that?
Because the anger is the reaction.

[25:59] Like, if I accidentally put my hand on a hot stove, I will jerk my hand back.
That's the reaction. But the stimulus is the heat. It's the pain, right?
So you lashed out because you got, and I say triggered not because it's, oh, you're triggered like something went against your ideology.
I don't mean, I mean, but you got triggered. And being triggered can be perfectly rational, perfectly reasonable, right? If you're a woman walking down a dark alley and some guy is creeping up behind you, trying to be as quiet as possible, you get triggered and it's a good thing too. You want that fight or flight, right?
So, something happened when she did this manipulative power play to dominate.
Something happened to you in your heart. Now, if you can get to that, then you can figure out what to do. But if you're just reacting and getting mad, that's to cover up a knowledge that I think most likely gives you some significant despair.

[27:06] I'm trying to analyze it and just be back in that moment.
And it's just the first word that comes to my head. It's just immaturity.
It's just this immature. literature, I don't know.
I don't have any information to give back to you.
I just want to shove it in your face, but yet she's not shoving anything in my face.

[27:32] Wait, so your conception that she was shoving something in your face?
Yeah, just like I'm kind of going back to the, I'm cool.
This is cool to me, but yet I have have nothing else to bring to the conversation but trying to deflect into well just trying to make me mad almost and this is a significant part of how i feel our relationship is almost like she's a kid and i'm the mom like she's like well i think you know smoking pot and sleeping around is so cool like that like she's trying to be rebellious teen stuff yes yes yes exactly and it just made made me so mad it's like who are you're the mother here come on like stop acting immature, stop thinking that that's that's fine if you really feel that way but it was just the way she did it and i like you said i know wait sorry what do you mean it's fine if you really feel that way it's fine if she really respects drug addiction and promiscuity no it's not fine it's just if she came and said well i it just in a more mature honest it's what you want to say to her don't be manipulative. Just be honest.

[28:41] Is that right? Like, if you like this stuff, tell me.
If you don't like this stuff, tell me, but don't pretend to like it as some power play. Or maybe I do. Or what if I did? Right?
Yeah. Yes. Okay, so there's a reason why she provoked you, and the reason why she provoked you is so that you would not experience the feeling that you would have if you recognized something without being triggered.
Sorry, that's a really bad way of putting it, and halfway through that, I'm like, I got lost in my own language, so let me rewind and take another run at this, right?
Okay, so...

[29:21] You got angry, and your mother provoked anger in you, so that you wouldn't feel something else.
Because, you see, anger is hope.
People, I'm sure maybe you get this, right? Most people don't understand that when you get angry at something, you have hope.

[29:43] There is a state, you know, if you're freezing to death, death.
There's a state where you sort of feel warm and blissful and peaceful, and that's your body saying, well, you know, we had a good run, but let's shut down, right? We're not, you know, you resign yourself.
You know, like I remember seeing some movie, I used to have these dreams decades ago about this giant wave that would keep hitting me on the shore and the ocean and tear me limb from limb.
I talked about this years ago in the show. And I remember seeing some movie where a couple was standing in front of some giant wave, a tsunami, like, I don't know, 20 stories high or or something.
And they just stood there and hugged each other. They didn't try and run.
They didn't try and fight, because they knew they were going to die, right, from this giant wave.
There's no anger there. There's resignation. There's acceptance, right?
So we get angry when we think we can do something about it.
Because the anger is the fight or flight. I can act in some way to make the situation better.
Now, people who won't connect with with us people who we can't connect with people who are manipulative like kind of not there all they do is seek advantage or seek domination or maybe seek submission in order to later seek domination but they're not there in an honest direct way that you can actually connect with they will often seek to provoke anger in us because they don't want us to experience the despair, of no connection and not just no connection in the moment no possibility of connection.

[31:10] So that's why I'm asking. When your mom does a power play like this, and you know, you and I and the whole world knows this is far from the first time she's done it and far from the last time she's ever going to do it.
When she does a power play like that, and is directly dishonest, manipulative, false, controlling.

The Unacceptable Feeling of No Connection

[31:29] Dominant. When she does that, there's a feeling underneath the anger and the anger is provoked so that you don't experience that feeling and you continue to feel the hope, that you can fix things with your mom.
Wow. Okay. So when she says stuff like that, there's a spasm of something deep down before the anger. Anger.

[31:58] And that's unacceptable to you. And it's unacceptable to your mom.
And the anger covers it up.
I see. So what's that feeling?
That we don't relate that i don't feel that we have a lot in common that we're just completely different people and it really annoys me and also i said this before that i just i feel like i'm the mom in the relationship i feel like i'm the one the believe it or not the more mature one and the the one who has a lot more knowledge and wisdom and just, just don't, I don't respect her. I don't have.

[32:47] I don't look to her like a mom. She's, she doesn't act like a mom.
Right. Now, no, no, you're not rambling at all. Everything you said, perfectly important and not rambling at all.
That, that was you. That was your mom intervening so that you and I couldn't talk just so you know, That was your mom Benji-ing in, saying, stop talking.
Don't have an ally. Don't reveal me.
You can't be the mom in the relationship. If you imagine that you're the mom in the relationship, there is no relationship, because you're not the mom. You didn't raise her.
You didn't have authority. You didn't have control. You didn't have power.
When she was growing up, you didn't shape the relationship.
You were shaped by the relationship. relationship so you can't you can't parent your own parents you can't you can't be the mom of that you can't be the mom with your mom you can be the mom with your kids you can't be the mom with your husband you can't be the mom with your parents you can't be the mom with your boss you can't be the mom with the taxi driver you can only be the mom with your kids right right so you say i feel like the mom in the relationship in order to avoid the feeling that we're trying to get to Right?
Because you say to me, well, I feel like the mom in the relationship.
She's immature. She's this, that, and the other, right?
But even that is to avoid the feeling.

[34:07] And that feeling is the key as to what to do.
The feeling when your mom says, well, maybe I do, do, do, do, do, right?
What's that feeling?

Overwhelmed by Sadness and Emotion

[34:28] I'm not sure. Yes, you are. You're feeling it now.
I'm with you there. I sympathize. I really do. I really do. I'm not cold about this. This is very deep stuff.
What's that feeling?
I'm not sure. I just know that I'm very sad and emotional right now. Right. Right.

[35:01] And you should be and it would be crazy it would be inhuman not to be so this is the very deeply human moment right yes, i know this sounds ridiculous i i almost don't know why i i'm i'm just getting very sad and emotional and i'm not even sure why i mean i know this is all sad in general i'm just I was struggling with the feeling.
Right. Because the feeling is beneficial to you, and harmful to your mother's interests. And that's why we react with anger in these situations, which is beneficial to our mother's interests and harmful to our own interests. And what I mean by that is.

[35:52] The feeling that you have of the sadness is i think getting close to the core of of what's going on and when we are raised by dysfunctional people all we can do is serve their needs and their interests we don't we don't we can't have needs and interests that are contradictory to them them without them smacking us or banging us or yelling at us or storming out or abandoning us or punishing us or hitting us or something right just negative stimuli like oh you're not giving me what i want bang bang bang i'm gonna hurt you until you give me what i want, what's the matter with you i have a preference which i have clearly stated you're not giving it to me you're bad you're wrong and i'm gonna apply negative stimuli until you give me what I deserve.
You exist to serve me.
And if you don't serve me, I will punish you until you remember your role and do what the hell I want.

[37:03] Now, if that's way off the mark for your childhood, feel free to let me know.
So, my mom was not abusive, but the way she would react to stuff, you did mention it, if she didn't get her way or she's, and this has been much more apparent as I've become an adult, adult if she doesn't get her way she cuts me off she doesn't talk to me and then most of the time I don't even know she's mad until I'm like hey what's going on and she just doesn't respond she doesn't respond she doesn't respond and then I finally have to be like are you okay did something happen and then finally she'll say something yes I'm fine I just I don't want to talk to you right now and then i mean eventually we'll have a conversation and i'll find out i did something to upset her and i had no idea i had even done it um it's possible in certain situations i should have picked up on something but i can tell you that for the most part i was clueless i didn't know her feelings were hurt she did not tell me she didn't express in any way um until she She just decided I'm really mad at her and I'm not going to talk to her anymore.
And she did this when you were a child as well?

[38:27] To some degree? Not as much, but I want to say to some degree that, yeah, she would just, she wouldn't completely cut me off.
But because I think she knew I was just a little kid. kid.
But as I got older, I would say more, and it started happening more and more.
So when you were a kid and you displeased your mother, what happened in general? Or what happened often?
She would yell at me. She would yell. And what would she say?

Yelling and Screaming: Angry Outbursts

[39:10] Scream at me don't whatever it might have been um don't do that you're don't you're not allowed to do that i something to that degree i i have to say it didn't happen terribly often but when it It would just be some kind of, I'm very angry at you, and how dare you do this or say this, or you should know better, that sort of thing.
Yell or scream? Do you use both words?
I would mostly yell, but if it was really bad, I would say scream. gritty screen.
And then she would withdraw her affections to some degree if it was less serious. Is that right?

[40:02] If I'm wrong, tell me, I want to get the facts here. This is not like, don't, don't, don't do anything I'm saying.
I, I don't think so. It was very rare.
If I was, I want to say maybe a couple different times, she would just be mad and just say, I need a moment.
I remember her saying, um, a few different times, like, honey, just because I'm mad about something doesn't mean I still love you very much, but I just need a few minutes. or she would walk away.
If it wasn't an immediate, I'm screaming at you, it would just be, I need to walk away for a few minutes.
I love you very much, but I just need a few minutes to calm down. That kind of thing.
Right. But there was no, no hitting or anything like that.

[40:42] Um, I can't say there was only one time she hit me. It was on my leg.
We were in the car and I don't remember at all what happened.
I just remember we were having a conversation. conversation.
I said, whatever it was, I, I don't want to be too defensive, you know, but I said something I just know that was very out of line.
And she was so angry, she hit me on the leg.
And I remember, you know, kind of quietly crying to myself, because my mother never did that.
But I mean, she apologized for it greatly and said, you know, I should never have done that. I was very angry, but that's no excuse.
But that that was Listen, I mean, again, it's not great, but it's certainly that to me is not, you know, it's not unforgivable because people make mistakes and didn't do you any permanent damage physically and she apologized.
And so to me, that's a wash, if that makes sense.
Sure, sure. But that would be the only time. Right. Okay. Okay. Okay.
You haven't mentioned your dad? Oh, sorry. Yeah, just do you have, you can give me a bit of that story.
Sure. It's pretty brief. My mom and him were married, and he was a drug addict and abusive, and finally she, one night, had enough and left him.
And they got a divorce, and he took off. He was absent from my life.

[42:12] He has a brother, my uncle, and my mom tried to get him when I was about 12, 11 or 12, got him to kind of come back to the area, tried to get him help so that he could be a father to me.
That was the first time I met him in my memory because I don't remember him from childhood.
And unfortunately, it didn't work. He went right back to drugs and took off.
And I haven't talked or seen him since.
I'm sorry. And I just missed some of this, which was, so your father was the drug addict.
And he had a brother, which your mother tried to get into your life.
Sorry, I just missed that part. Oh, so I'm still, um, not, I'm close, or we've always been kind of a part of my father's family, even though he was kind of the backseat, like when my grandparents were alive, they were still very much in my life.
And, um, my uncle, who is my dad's brother and inside of the family, I've always been, we've always been in touch with them and they've always been around.
So, and they're, you know, reasonably good people, but my, my uncle wanted to get my dad some help and wanted him to basically be a father to me.
And so they, they tried that, tried getting him help and unfortunately it just didn't work.

[43:41] Okay. Okay. Now you understand, I hope you understand how jaw dropping this is to me. Okay.
Absolutely. I'm sorry if you're going to get emotional, but it's going to happen.
I just want to warn you ahead of time how absolutely, completely, and totally jaw-dropping this is to me.

[44:09] Your father destroyed his life with drugs, right?
Yes. Right? One of the greatest, if not the single greatest tragedy in your entire life was your father's drug addiction.
Yes. And your mother said, what?
Maybe I'm fine with drug addiction. Holy shit, sister.
Holy shit. I don't mean to. It's a laugh of, oh, my God.
Holy shit. I didn't even put that together. Oh, my God.
She said what?

[44:59] Think you might have had a reason to get. Maybe I'm fine with drug addiction.
I mean, I married one. Yeah.
And it destroyed his life, broke your heart every day for 37 years.
Maybe I'm fine with that.
Maybe that's good.
Holy shit. What a thing to say. Yes. Wow.
Be like my wife saying, maybe I'm fine with child beating.
Yeah. Oh my God.
Oh my God. That is the bomb she's willing to roll into the conversation just to win.
That's the harm she's willing to do just to win in the moment. Mm-hmm.
My heart is pounding at that statement.

[46:13] Yours as yet is not.
I'm breathing. I'm just breathing. Okay. I'm just taking it in.
But you understand, right?
It's the biggest heartache of your life. And the most catastrophic decision your mother made was to get married to and have children with a drug addict, right? Yeah.
And now she listens to a drug addict and says, Oh, maybe I'm fine with it.
To you. Who had to live with a father. Is he still alive?
Yes. As far as I know, yes. And what was he addicted to? Or is he?
Cocaine. Cocaine. Oh, man.
Took out a BG. So... Okay. And is he's not part of your life at the moment? Is that right?
No, no, absolutely not. No.

A Shocking Revelation about F-Bombing Mom

[47:22] Wow. That's a hell of a thing to say. Yeah. I, I, I didn't.
Oh, you got it. You got it in the moment. Somewhere deep inside.
I think you're, yes, you're right. Oh, you got it. Yeah, yeah.
Because I was kind of surprised why you'd F-bomb your mom, and I'm like, oh, yeah, now I get it.
Yeah, it makes perfect sense to me. In order to win against you, my daughter, I will stab a steely knife right into the deepest wound in your heart and twist the fuck out of it.
Maybe I'm fine with drug addiction.
Oof that's murderous in my humble opinion.

[48:13] There usually is, in most reasonably decent people, I mean, there's a line, right?
There's a line. You know, the typical, you think of the sort of typical Italian verbal slugfest, right?
And the line is, you better not talk about my mom.

[48:35] Right? James Woods is not known for respecting that line on Twitter.
But anyway, Anyway, so, but, you know, no.
No, you can't. You can't talk about that, right?
So, in most people that are decent, they might get angry, but they won't, you know, we all have a wound, right? Everybody has wounds.
And when you get to know people or I guess you're born from them everybody knows your your wounds right everybody knows your wounds and the closer you get to them the more they know your wounds and trust is knowing they're never going to use your wounds to control you, they're never going to exploit your wounds they're never going to win using your wounds just as you will never try to win using their wounds because otherwise you're exploiting the abusers right.

The Power Your Mother Holds Over You

[49:49] So, your mother knows all of your wounds. All of them. Why? Because she made many of them, right?
She knows where the bodies are buried because she buried them, right? So, your mother has tremendous power over you.

[50:10] She knows all of your wounds, and she knows exactly which buttons to push to win.

[50:17] She knows that you can't stand it when she withdraws from you without explanation she knows that it tortures you it's a bit of a female thing but it's not exclusively a female thing, everybody knows that with men if a guy does if a male friend doesn't call for a couple of weeks yeah i'm busy right who he's busy whatever right but if a female friend doesn't call for a couple of weeks it's like what's wrong it's just it's it's a it's it's a beautiful thing about women but it's everybody knows that this is sort of the thing right and your mother knows exactly how tortuous it is for you when she withdraws and doesn't tell you why she knows that exactly, completely and totally down to the last detail i guarantee you well i sorry i would hope I would hope so because she's the only parent I got.
So if she turns her back on me, I mean, I feel, yeah, it was devastating when she did that.
I mean, as in this is as an adult. When she does that, not did, does.
Yeah. It is devastating. It is devastating.
So as your only parent, she knows exactly how powerful it is.
When she abandons you, she turns her back on you.

[51:44] Now, here's the bomb, right? Five words.
So once you understand, my friend, that she knows exactly how devastating it is for you, how agonizing it is for you, how painful it is for you.
Once you know and really understand that she knows and understands all of that at the deepest level. Are you ready for the five words?

[52:13] Okay. Are you ready? I'm ready. She knows how devastating it is for you.
Five words where the lights go on.
She knows exactly how tortuous it is for you, but she does it anyway.
And that's what I don't understand.
Because you wouldn't. If you knew something that caused incredible emotional difficulty for your son, you'd be like, well, I'm not going to do that because that hurts him, right?
Of course. Of course. Right.
Your mother knows exactly how tortuous this is for you.
Remember I was talking about the sort of gap analysis, how different you are?

[53:25] You wouldn't do it in a million years how much money would you accept to emotionally torture your children are you kidding no no come on i'll make an offer you know there's oh my god come on let's get a go fund me let's let's build it up more than anything i'd not not no i'd torture torture myself you know it's like it's like how much how much money would you accept to tell your children that you hate them well there's no amount of money right there's no i'd rather live in a car under a bridge like i'm not i don't care how much money you have i'm never telling my daughter i hit her because it would devastate her of course right so there's nothing, that would cause you to do something that would emotionally torture your children.

[54:26] But your mom does. See the difference?
Yes. And it is almost impossible to comprehend this.
It is, honestly, it is almost impossible to comprehend this.
Have you ever had someone in your life, have you ever had someone in your life, that's just making bad decisions, they're just sailing into disaster?
Well, obviously your dad, right? Right.
But other people, right. They're just sailing into disaster.
And nothing you say will change their course. Right.
And have you had someone like that other than your dad? I mean, my mom, definitely.
I guess either that either. Right. But besides her, yes.
Right. Isn't that horrible? It is. It really is.
It really is because when you just see people making these terrible decisions, and they won't listen they won't change and they also get mad at you for trying to help them yeah it's it's it's horrible, it's like going swimming with someone you know they're going to start drowning and try and pull you down.

The Gap Analysis: Mother vs. Child

[55:52] But that's the gap analysis. There's nothing that would cause you, there's no incentive that you would accept to act towards your children the way your mother acts towards you.
I couldn't pay you, not that I ever would, but I couldn't pay you enough to do it, but you couldn't pay her enough to not do it.

Mother's Powerlessness and Dominance Addiction

[56:20] Yes.
She knows how much it hurts you, but she does it anyway. Or, to put it in, they say, but she does it anyway, like it's somehow she doesn't want to.
But she's.

[56:41] Your father's addicted to drugs and your mother's addicted to dominance, to power. Because she doesn't have any.
Oh no, she does. us she has power over you you mean elsewhere in her life yes you're no you're absolutely right that that's true but most of the rest of her life is yeah out of control um i have to tell you that in the fight after we kind of had this fight we stayed and continued to talk one thing that came out of it that was enlightening but not surprising to me i she revealed to me that her her mother used to beat her and I hadn't, I didn't know that.
She, it's the first time she was opening up about it. And it just, a lot of stuff clicked together for me after this education we had.
And I mean, I felt bad for her, but you know, I mean, this is stuff she needs to deal with.
That's just another example. Just, she just does not have feel.
She feels very powerless in her life.
Right. Can you tell me the circumstances under which she told you that she'd been beaten by her mother?

[57:59] So how that conversation went um after i ran over to her when she was about to leave in the car i started like yeah i wouldn't say screaming but yelling at her that you know you're you're not allowed to leave like this you can't just cut me off and get mad we have to discuss this and talk talk about this.
And, um, it was kind of a longish conversation that we've had, but what it, what it stemmed from was I told her mom, you can't act like this.
You have to remember you are the mother in this, in this relationship.
I am not your mother. You are my mother. I am the child. You're not allowed to yell at me and scream at me and leave me like this.
And I kept repeating eating that over and over and she started crying.
And that's when she kind of feel that her mother had hit her and she'd been dealing with this a lot lately and thinking and reflecting back on it.
And she's just like, I don't know why she did this to me. I don't know why, you know, she treated me like this.
She loved my brother more than she loved me. He never got hit.
I was always the one that got hit and so on.

[59:14] I reject the intimacy of this conversation.
Doesn't mean I'm right. Doesn't mean I could be completely wrong. Doesn't mean I'm right.
But I reject that this was intimate. I reject that this was revelatory.
And I submit that it's exactly the same selfishness that produces the cold shouldering to begin with.
And I'll tell you why. I could be wrong. I could be wrong. i'll just tell you please i'll tell you why okay you were upset with her right, yes very you were very upset with her and who did she turn it into who was it about her yeah you were angry and upset with her, and what she should have been doing is focusing on your anger and upset but instead you ended up focusing on her it's another move.

[1:00:21] Okay yeah i can see that yes again i i hate to say it because you know she's crying maybe she's upset but listen i don't know how much to say about this so when i was younger i confronted I confronted someone who had mistreated me when I was younger, and that person cried.
I wish I hadn't done it. I felt bad about it every day.
Never asked me how I felt. It was self-pity. It was a maneuver.
I still wasn't there in the conversation. It still wasn't about me. I had the complaint.

[1:01:07] You know, there's an old Monty Python joke, or a little skit, I can't remember it too well, but it's about a guy running a complaints department.
And a customer comes up and says, I wish to make a complaint.
And the guy says, you wish to make a complaint? This chair is uncomfortable, my shoes are too tight, my back hurts, I've got piles, I'm having a terrible day.
My wife's gonna leave me my kids don't like me i don't make enough money i'm stuck in this job and you've got a complaint are you kidding me, right and that's kind of funny because he's supposed to listen to complaints but instead all he's doing is making complaints making it about him and the customer never gets hurt right right.

[1:01:56] You have a complaint about your mother mother, she's supposed to focus on you.
Right. Right. But she doesn't. You end up focusing on her and serving her needs because she reveals, I was beaten.
Now, what that means to me is I know exactly how bad it is to have a mother mistreat you.
So I'm sorry. sorry, I have the least excuse to treat you badly because I know exactly how it is to be mistreated by a mother.
So I'm sorry, let's talk about you. As opposed to, I was beaten, let's focus on me, it's all about me.

Focus on Me: Mother's Self-Centered Response

[1:02:44] Can you imagine if your son, sorry to interrupt, if your son or your sons have a complaint, as they will when they get older, And you say, oh, you have problems with me as your mother? Let me tell you about my problems with my mother.
I would never do that. Of course you wouldn't. Of course you wouldn't, but your mom did.

[1:03:08] And she did it in a pretty manipulative way because she kind of got weak and everything about it just started crying.
And I knew when she started crying, I knew that it was going to be something about her parents.
And I, when everything I was saying was definitely hitting on some kind of a nerve with her and yeah.
Right. I kind of, I got, of course I listened, but in, I told her, you know, mom, I'm here for you, but I can't be your therapist.
I can't, this is a boundary that we're parent and child.
It's not that I don't want to know this stuff, but you're kind of unloading to me and that's just not appropriate. appropriate, you need to find somebody who's your equal.
No, but you see, now you're still trying to parent, you're still trying to be in charge, you're still trying to mother her, you're still trying to tell her the basics.
Yeah. I tell you what I would have said, which is not right or wrong, and it's easy for me because it's not my mom, but what I would have said is something like this.
You got to be kidding me. Lady, you got to be kidding me.

[1:04:13] I've known you for 37 years, and now I have a significant issue with me, and you suddenly decide to tell me how you were beaten as a child you're 37 years to tell me yes yeah and now you only bring it up when i have a big problem with you you've got to be kidding me get get your head out of your own ass look me in the eyes and try and focus on me just try i'm just just try see if you can i'm curious if you can but let's not make i have a problem with you let's not make this about you. My problem is with you.
I don't want to hear about your problems with your mom. Right now, anyway.
Stop playing.

[1:04:58] Now, again, it's easy for me because it's not my mom. You know what I mean?
Like if I was in your situation, I probably would have actually, but this, you know, everyone has their fantasy speech, right? Yes.
I mean, I did get to, yes, no, you're absolutely right.
And I didn't even see that in the moment, but once again, and this is just what it's been like for many years since I've been an adult. oh, I feel like I do these things where I'm like, this is what you need to do.
I've told her for years that she's needed to go to therapy.
And I mean, I went myself. There was a time where I realized I needed it.
And I was able to do that. But she's never been able to do that.
I, it's very frustrating. That's because you haven't done significant wrong.
People who resist therapy are people who've done massive wrong.
Guaranteed. I'm going to handle it myself. I'm not going to therapy.
I don't need a head shrinker.
Well, that's because they're terrified that the therapist is going to awaken some latent conscience within them. Might have them throw themselves off a bridge.
Oh, yeah.

[1:06:11] So, let's put some meat on the bone, if you don't mind. I don't know.
You don't even know what that means.
Are you barbecuing? What are you talking about? Okay. Sorry.
Sorry. So what I mean is, so the question is, as far as I understand it, what's going to happen moving forward, right?
Yes. Okay. So I know the question that will give you the answer.
I'm sorry. This sounds all so, ew, I know the question is a lot so pompous and all that. I'm sorry about that. But I do.
No, not at all. I know the question is going to give you the answer.
Oh. how does your current relationship with your mom benefit your sons, how are you a better person a better mother more available more happy more emotionally connected to them when you spend time with your mom in other words if they had the choice would they say oh yeah mom go see grandma because you're always happy and connected and an even better mom when when you come back.

The Impact of Spending Time with Mother on Parenting

[1:07:18] Can you phrase the question again i i heard everything you said no no that's fine that's fine, are you a better mother when you spend time with your mother are you a better mother to your sons when you spend time with your mother no no and it doesn't yeah enhance and it's not even close right no it does it does absolutely not it distracts you yeah to some degree it It re-traumatizes you.
It provokes your anger, your temper.
You're upset. You don't sleep well. You're distracted.
You're fuming. You're, right? All of this, right? Am I wrong?
No, you're 100% right. 100%. See, this is what people don't understand about, you do, I'm sure, right? In general, this is what people don't understand about what I talk about.
So, listen, if you want to be a, if you want to smoke pot, I think it's stupid.
Okay, a couple of things I need you to not do. One, don't waltz around the world pretending it's cool. It's not.
You're a sad, pitiful addict who can't handle reality, and you're self-medicating for childhood trauma and calling it a virtue at the expense of your own life.
Okay. But it's solitary. Voluntary.
Now, don't drive, don't fly planes, don't operate heavy machinery, don't put your stupid drug addiction out there where it's going to harm me or my family or my daughter.
But if you become a dad, guess what? Stop taking drugs.

[1:08:45] Stop taking drugs. Because it's no longer about your choice.
I mean, this is something, because we, you know, most of us were raised by, I dare say, selfish boomer parents, right?
Probably your mom falls in. Selfish boomer parents, right? And selfish boomer parents, as a whole, have no fucking clue what it is to sacrifice their own interests for their children.
They didn't sit there and march and say, oh my God, we can't have this national debt. That's terrible for our kids.
No, they were like, oh, wait. wait, we get to spend more money because we don't have to take care of our own parents? Fantastic.
Let's go to Cabo. Let's go buy a condo in Florida.

[1:09:26] And they're like, wait, we get free health care and the bills get passed to our kids? Woohoo! Fantastic. Let's go to Cabo.
Let's buy a condo in Florida.
Right? Or the idea that they would sit there and say, oh my gosh, you know, know, this creeping socialism is really bad for our kids.
We got to go fix up these schools. We got to, we got to protest.
We got to, we got to act because our kids are being indoctrinated.
They don't care about that. Like, oh, great.
I don't have to pay for school. Fantastic. Woo, free.
So, and again, there's lots of exceptions. This is very much a generalization.
But because you were raised, I think, by this type of person, it's hard for you to say well this decision isn't mine right like if you, live alone and you smoke drugs bad but to a large degree you're harming nobody but yourself but if you become a parent your decision about whether you should or shouldn't smoke drugs is not yours anymore.

Being a Parent Changes Decision-Making

[1:10:32] It's not yours.
That doesn't exist because you're no longer isolated as a human being.
You know, I can practice judo if I want at home alone.
I can't practice judo in a crowded mall. Why? Because I'm going to hit someone.
Because I'm no longer isolated, so it's not just about my decision.

[1:11:00] You know, some of the tough topics that I took on in this show, I took on precisely because I'm a parent.

[1:11:10] Right? I mean, my daughter's going to get blamed for the underperformance of certain ethnic groups, but it's not her fault that there is, on average, different IQ levels. It's not her fault.
So, it's not like, then it doesn't really become my choice.
I mean, I can sort of pretend, oh, it's an entirely solitary decision.
It's like, well, I can sail through life in the remainder that I have.
Like, I'm way more than halfway done. I can sail through life and do okay, but my daughter's going to live in the world where she's going to get blamed for things that are not her fault.
That's not right. That's not right. Sorry. sorry.
And we don't know what it's like to be loved to the point where people are willing to make enormous sacrifices on our behalf.
We don't really know what that's like, those of us who are raised by boomers, on average.

[1:12:01] Because for them, it was like, oh, well, that's uncomfortable.
I don't want to talk about that.
Well, doesn't that have a huge negative consequence on your children?
Oh, no, but I find it unpleasant. I find it difficult.
Okay, but what about your kids? What's good for them? Can we have a conversation about cutting national spending? No.
Why? Because it's uncomfortable. Wait, but isn't massive debt going to be really bad for your kids? No, but I find it uncomfortable. That's all we have.
It's a whole model right there. And it's crap.
It's selfish, narcissistic crap, right? So what you do as a result, and I have massive sympathy, and this is going out to everyone, right?
I'm telling you how to to make decisions because you're sitting there and saying what's my relationship with my mother how should i improve it how should i fix it what should i do like it's just you and her right, your relationship with your mother is scarcely relevant to the decision i'm sorry i know that's an annoying thing to say but it's true do you know why it's scarce like your individual personal feelings about your relationship with your mother and this and then the history do you know why it's It's largely irrelevant.

[1:13:13] Why? Because it only matters whether it's good for your children or not.
That's all that matters.
I gotcha. Yeah. Okay. Then tell me all about it because I've had enough talking.

[1:13:31] I mean, you're absolutely right. They benefit from seeing her a little bit.
I mean, we, I mean, I'm the one who plans when we do anything with my mom and we get together with her and have fun with her.
I mean, they, they love being around her. She's fun and kooky and stuff.
But besides that, there's, there's really no, yeah.
I mean, there's something that they're going to get. If I'm not getting any wisdom or anything from her, they're definitely not going to get that.
That we're just going to get the fun, kooky grandma that comes over sometimes.
That is a wonderfully surface level analysis and true.
I'm not going to dispute anything you said, but I'm going to invite you to the free domain bath escape and we're going to go go for a deep dive. You ready?
Okay. Okay. Hey, you can hang up anytime. Free will, baby. baby. Anytime.
No, I'm in it. I'm in it. All right.

The Price of a Good Grandmother-Grandchild Relationship

[1:14:36] The better, your son's relationship is with your mother, the worse your relationship is with them.

[1:14:50] That's the price. That's the price.
I don't want to tell you something you've already got an instinct for if you know why.

[1:15:02] Go ahead. Because if your grandmother, sorry, if your mother is great with your kids and they have a good time with her, then part of you is screaming, mom, why are you nice to my kids but not to me?
And you understand that her being nice to your kids is just another power play.
See, I'm great with kids. Any problems you have with me must be imaginary. You kids love me.

[1:15:38] I'm great with kids. Don't you see? You can see it vividly now with your kids. They love me.
They enjoy my company. So all your issues are imaginary.
It's a show.
Because if she could be that nice to them, why wasn't she that nice with you?
If she could be that nice, if she can be that nice with them, why is she not nice with you now?
If she can be that nice with your sons, why is she telling you, oh, no, maybe I'm fine with drug addiction, the same drug addiction that destroyed your father?
If she can be nice, why isn't she nice with you?
Also, it's a building a future case.
Because at some point, things are going to come to a head with your mother.
And let's say you take a break from her. I don't know if you should or shouldn't.
I'm just telling you, maybe it could happen, right?
And then your sons, you know, maybe it's in five years or seven years or ten years or whatever, and your sons are going to be like, hey, where's grandma?
And you'll be like, oh, man, you know, things got really bad between us.
You know, I had to take a break, right? And what are your sons going to think?

[1:17:02] As something, we were to have a fight, that I would do the same thing to them.
That's certainly part of it. But also, grandma's great. You must be in the wrong.
No, I say yes. And also, if grandma is toxic and dysfunctional, why was she around us?
Right, right. Do you see the future bomb that she's rolling up through time?

Future Consequences of the Mother's Behavior and Actions

[1:17:38] And the present distress she's causing you by the contradictory nature of her behavior.
Yes. I'm great with kids. Oh, your daughter has a request. No, F you, I'm storming off. What?
It's just a play.

[1:17:58] In my opinion. because if she can be nice to kids why is she not nice to you on a more regular basis, i mean she tries to be but if we go if we talk about anything that's deep and she doesn't like what i say she gets mad right so i mean look the children your kids they're very young it's a great age but they're not any threat to her psychologically right Right? Right.
And so she can be nice because they can't trigger her in any way.

The astute perception of a 12-year-old daughter

[1:18:42] But they'll get older, and they will have questions and comments.
I mean, I'll tell you this. My daughter just turned 12 yesterday.
She's like a sky laser from Aldebaran when it comes to scanning and identifying personalities in human beings. Oh, my God, it's incredible.
She's like an x-ray. I need to lift her, like, point her at people.
Get the full scan. It's incredible.
Now some of that may be you know we've had lots of conversations over the years some of that may be her genetics i don't know but she is like boom and and and better than me in many ways, i still have sentimentality early trauma you know i'll never be the person who wasn't abused as a child but she's just like boom scan done and she's uh i can't think of a time when she's been wrong.
Now, you're a smart woman, very smart.
I assume the father of your children is very smart.
So guess what? Your sons are going to be very smart. Plus they're dudes, which means they care less about social convention in general.
So they're going to scan your your mom, and you.

[1:20:11] And if the relationship is not positive, they'll know that deep down.
And then the question is, do you talk to them about it?
And what do you say?
Yeah, she treats me pretty badly. When she wants to win, she'll really stick the knife in and pretty dysfunctional.
Her life's out of control. all she married a drug addict she defended drug addiction as recently as when i was 37, she swears at me tells me to f off what are they going to think what are they going to say, you're going to say but i would think if i were them why the heck was she around i might even have a relationship with her why why bring her around us us why did you have us bond with her just to take her away.

[1:21:08] And it's going to sink deep into, their souls my friend my sister in thought it's going to sink deep into their souls, and then dysfunctional people are going to start sniffing around your sons when they get older And will they have boundaries?

[1:21:32] Better. How will they? I know that.
I know. I know what you're saying. I know what you're getting at.
You're modeling. Absolutely.
You're modeling that dysfunctional people totally have a place in your life, even if they upset you, even if they cause more stress than happiness, even if they cause you sleepless nights, even if they cause you to talk for hours in a philosophy show.
So if you put your own considerations aside because again if you were a single woman you know that's why i asked if you had kids was very first question i asked if you remember right, before anything else because if you're a single person then we'll talk about what's good for you, but if you're a mother what do we talk about.

Prioritizing what's best for the children

[1:22:22] It's out of your hands it's what's good for your kids yeah it's what's good for your kids now in the long run in general and you said to me sorry i sound like i'm cross-examined you said to me and i'm gonna quote you back but you did say right like you're not you're you're not as good a mom you're a worse mom after you spent time with your mom because you're tense distracted upset when your mom's cold shouldering you it's always on your mind what's going on what happened what did did I do?
When's she going to come back?
Which means you're less emotionally available to your sons.
Right. Yes, absolutely.
That's not their, it's not their fault that your mom freezes you out.
It's not their fault that your mom is immature and it's not their fault.

[1:23:09] That she's in your life. So why are they paying the primary price of having a less emotionally connected and emotionally available mom?
If you simply say hey it's not up to me it's so simple i mean i'm not saying it's easy, but, okay what's best for my kids, what's best for my kids what do they need what do they deserve right right then it's not so complicated right.

[1:23:45] Oh, it's very simple, very clear. Now, to me, the clarity is not never see your mom again. I don't know, right?
Maybe there's something you can do. Maybe there's – but don't let it – and this is why you're calling, right?
Just don't let it go on the way it has with this start, stop, good, bad, high, low, connected, disconnected, frustrated, in, out, whatever, right?
This plane that never lands and never takes off just keeps taxiing along the runway until it crashes.
Just sort it out, man. And it's not about you.
Because if it's about you, see, if your mom has control over you, but she doesn't have control over your love for your kids, which is considerable, enormous, and for which you should deserve eternal respect, especially given where you came from as a human being.
But your mom can control you, but if you're there for something larger than you, right? If you're there for something larger than you, then you have strength.

[1:24:49] Now, that strength can be used for bad things like religious extremism, or it can be used for good things.
But if it's just about you and your mom, you're kind of helpless.
But if it's like, no, it's about what's best for my kids.
I mean, I remember I did a couple of shows with Dave Rubin many years ago.
And then he invited me into his studio, and I thought it was going to be pretty friendly.
We'd had pretty friendly chats. But it turned into, I mean, not quite an ambush, but it was very much like, I'm going to tell every conceivable controversy about you, blah, blah, blah, right?

[1:25:19] And look, if it was just about me and my comfort and what was good for me, I wouldn't have taken on some of these weird, challenging, difficult, crazy topics that are actually scientific and fact-based and hugely important to the world.
I would have had a much more comfortable existence, but it's not about me.

[1:25:38] And so, yeah, I'll have those conversations. I'll be cross-examined. I'll be grilled.
People will attempt to trip me up or catch me like Joe Rogan did many years ago.
Yeah, because it's not about me.
It's not even what's good for the world and abstract. It's about what's important for my daughter, what's good for my daughter.
Doesn't mean the truth will win out or anything like that.
But it's like, should I take on this topping? Well, if it's just about me, you know what it's like. We're smart people.
We can talk ourselves in and out of anything at any time, right?
Yeah. It's really important for me to have a relationship with my mom.
We're going to work it out. Oh, I can't have a relationship with my mom.
It's not just because she's 37.
She's not going to change. Like, we can talk ourselves in and out of just about anything. It's a round and round, Hamlet style, circles within circles, right?
But we take a deep breath. We put all that aside and say, well, that's all well and good, but what's best for my kids?
And because we were raised by boomers we don't have a freaking clue what that looks like right yeah yep and that's yeah that's a big part of it it's just even if you know something you've just never had it modeled to you well you had the opposite model to you it's not even like you weren't taught french you were punished for talking french.

The weight of the current situation with her mother

[1:27:00] And it's just it's a big load off your shoulders it's out of your hands it's out of your hands, because it's no longer about well do i find positive things about my relationship with my mother should i do this should i do that what's bad no it's like okay i'm a better mother or worse mother when i see my mom at the moment in the current situation okay well if i'm a My worst mom, if it distracts me, if it causes me to be dissociated and disconnected from my kids and so on, it's okay, but I can't do that.
Like this current situation can't continue.

[1:27:33] Yes, I'm nodding. Right, right. No, I think so. I'm nodding, yeah.
Yeah, so that's my, that's sort of my big, I should be more eloquent.
That's my big thing, man. That's my big thing.
But that's what I wanted to get across. If it's about you, it's going to be unresolvable, literally unresolvable, unless, you know, she sets fire to your house or something, which she's not going to do, right?
But you can go back and forth. And obviously, we've talked about the negatives with your mother. I'm sure there are positives which make it even more complicated, and I don't want to deny or disavow those.
But, you know, I mean, this was my decision with my mom.
Oh, maybe I should see her. She is old. You know, she's alone.
Should I at least try and figure out what's going on? Should I get involved?
Should I try and—I've thought about all these things.
And if it was just me, I can talk myself in and out of anything.

[1:28:34] But what's best for my daughter? Is it good for my daughter that I go get re-traumatized by spending time with my mom?
It's really not. Even if I sneak off, even if I say, I'm just going for lunch with a friend, even if I, you know, I'm going to come back, like, reactivated with the trauma.
That's not fair to her, even if there would be some benefit for me in terms of knowledge and closure and, you know even if I were to go and see my mom and you know she was even more unhappy you know I mean then that would be oh my gosh you know because I'm still her son I want to make her better I want to make it better I want to make it better I want my mom to be happy I want everyone to be happy blah blah blah right, so even if I could find something positive in it But the question is, is it good for my daughter for me to be in touch with my mother?

[1:29:29] Now, the answer for me is pretty clear. And this is not, it's not, it's not a totally simple thing.
Like, well, 100%, zero. I mean, obviously, as you said, there's some benefit with your sons being in touch with your mom.
But the question which your sons can answer is if you put it to them and say, is it worth me being distracted because my mom brings some candies over?
Is it worth me being less emotionally available because your mom's good at patty cake or your grandmom's good at patty cake, right?
I think they would say, mom, we like it when you're happy.

[1:30:10] We like it when you have peace of mind. We like it when you're not distracted.
We like it when you're connected with us. And we frankly don't like anything that interferes with that.

[1:30:27] Right absolutely and your your kids want you to be happy just as you want your mom to be happy, and here's the other thing if they knew the truth about your grandma and how she'd hurt you and how about their grandma and and how she still hurts you from time to time and frustrates you and swears at you and calls her names my god can you imagine, can you imagine if one of your kids told you to f off or told each other when they get older to f off would that be acceptable no your mom did it to you f you she said i was very hurtful i mean i know i don't mean to say it's odd but i just was so shocked that she said that to me i was just and And that's why, I mean, there's obviously, we've already gone into it a lot of reasons, but I just, that's why I set off.
I didn't turn around and run away crying.
I confronted her. I was like, I'm done.
I am done with this. And that's why I kind of followed her to her car and I told her, I mean, I did yell at her.
Yes, but as we talked about before, she said, F you. And then you ended up sympathizing with her.

[1:31:47] Because she was beaten by her mother. she says, which we don't even know is true.
Could just be another move. I don't know. I mean, maybe you were there obviously, but I don't take, maybe little people, I take nothing for granted, nothing at face value.
I definitely think it's, it's true. It's just, I mean, you already hit it that she's had years to talk to me about this.
And I've always learned that her mom was a very, um, very vulnerable spot for her.
She never talked about her mother, just that she was was very you know emotional that she had passed away and so i just assumed oh she loved her mother very much and her mother must have been a wonderful woman and then over the years i not only that i found out um she had revealed to me a couple years ago that she had a half brother that, molested her and she went to her mother about it and her mother ignored it that just nope nope that didn't happen to the brother's side for it and so i had found that out years ago and i was very like blown away.
So when she told me about this, I was kind of like, I'm not really surprised, that she also knew about more mistreatment from the mother that she had a half brother who molested her. Yes. Yeah.

[1:32:58] Has she processed the sexual abuse? What's that? I assume she's not processed the sexual abuse.
I don't think so. I mean, I don't think so completely.
She's admitted to it, but not processed it, probably not.
Well, I just tell you, I mean, this is probably a pretty provocative thing to say, but I personally Personally would not let unprocessed victims of sexual abuse around my daughter.

[1:33:34] Okay. No, when you say it like that, of course, I would completely agree with that.
Now, the other thing I wanted to mention, sorry, that was one of the things that kind of flew by me like a bird. And I'm like, oh, yeah, that was a bird back then.
Okay. So I just wanted to rewind to something because you said my mother's not abusive.
Abusive, and then you said, but she withdraws from me when I've said something that has upset her, she won't tell me why, and weeks can go by, she won't talk to me, and, you know, eventually something will be said, and so on.
Now, everybody could have their own definition of abuse.
Here's mine, it's the intentional infliction of negative stimuli.

[1:34:15] Right now, you could say, well, what about going to prison or being fined and so on. It's like, but that's a legal matter, right? That's illegal as opposed to abuse, right?
So abuse is when you know something is going to hurt someone and you do it anyway, or you do it because you enjoy it, or maybe you're sadistic, or it's the only way you know how to gain control and to win or whatever it is, right?
So the intentional intentional infliction of emotional pain is abusive.
And so, again, I'm happy to have this redefined and, you know, this is, I'm not saying this is a net that catches absolutely everything, but I think it's a good place to start.
And so, when I said, I think you agreed with that, and when I said, your mother knows that it hurts you, but she does it anyway, that is abusive.
That is abusive.

[1:35:07] Yeah. When you define it like that, I would have to agree. Yeah.
Now, okay. And you know, you can say, well, you know, if you're a parent and you give a stern lecture to your child about something the child did that's negative or whatever, that's inflicting emotional pain and so on.
But that to me would fall in the self-defense category.
In other words, if your child does something that inflicts emotional pain, then you should tell them about that. And if that causes emotional pain for them, that's more like a self-defense thing.
But the infliction, like the non-aggression principle applies to emotional pain as well.
You don't just go around creating emotional pain in people around you who you care about, right?
Now, if they commit, if they inflict emotional pain upon you and you telling them about that causes them to be upset, that's self-defense.
That's not, that's like saying it's violence to defend yourself using violence, right? It's not. If you're defending yourself, it's a different matter, right?
But the initiation of emotional pain is abusive in the same way that the initiation of the use of force is immoral.

Differentiating between negative behavior and abusive behavior

[1:36:14] Now it's aesthetically negative behavior to use the terminology from universally preferable behavior in other words you can escape it you can avoid it it's not cornered it's not inflicted on you against your will because you choose to put yourself in that situation which is different from a guy who jumps you in an alley or something like that right okay so when you say my mother's not abusive, but she kind of tortures me emotionally by withdrawing as my only parent and not telling me what's wrong, that is abusive.
I would argue that is abusive. Now, again, the term has fuzzy boundaries and, you know, there's some subjectivity to it and so on.
And I'm sure that your mother would say, but she was making me upset.
Therefore, I was just defending myself by getting out of the situation, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, right?
But she would say that for sure. But I think that that she would also say that...

[1:37:07] If, like, when you were younger, she would say, I'm too angry, I need a few minutes, a few moments, right? Not three weeks.
Right? So, of course, if you're too angry to speak to somebody reasonably, take a count to 10, go to another room, calm down, blah, blah, blah.
But you don't just shut the person out week after week after week and then lie, right? Because the problem is lying.
She's not telling you what you did that was wrong. And then you ask her, she's denying that you did anything wrong. wrong.
So it's the lying that is the big problem, right? So she might say, well, my daughter hurt me and blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.
It's like, well, first of all, you're the mother. You're supposed to be bigger than that, right?
You're supposed to be bigger because she's still your mom, right?
So if your daughter hurts you, well, you raised her.
You can't just claim to be a victim because you taught her how to behave.
You taught her how to act.
You modeled behavior. You can't just say, oh, I'm completely dissociated.
My child is just some stranger who hurt me. I mean, come on.
I mean, that's not taking responsibility to parent.
And number two, you could tell the the truth right if if you're if your daughter says if you're angry at your daughter and your daughter says are you angry at me you in any relationship you got it now you can say yes i am i don't want to talk about it right now but i will talk about it to you tomorrow or this afternoon at three o'clock or i can't talk about it right now or i'm too upset or i'm in a meeting i'm busy i'm right but you can't just lie and say no i'm not upset i'm not mad slam slam slam right right?
Come on. Yeah.

[1:38:31] I mean, like you said, it still is, but it's just there were a few different incidences that stuck out where that happened.
And I mean, before I was so enlightened with a lot of this, I was just so devastated.
I would just be at home and I'd be so upset like, why isn't she talking to me?
What did I do wrong? What's going on?
And oh, so it was so devastating. dating. And when she did it a few different times, I finally told her mom, you cannot do this to me again.
If you do this to me again, it's I'm going to kind of do the same thing to you and I'm going to cut you off.
And then she attempted to do it just last weekend and I just would not stand for it.

[1:39:11] Yeah. Yeah. No, but here's the thing. And I, you know, I don't want to take away the medal.
What you did was very brave and I applaud you massively for doing it, but you still didn't win because it still became about.
No, no. And I see that now. And the question, the question is always with people. Can you win?
But it's the fundamental question you have in every relationship that you have.
Can, can I win when I'm in the right? Can I, can I win?

[1:39:37] Can I, and I don't mean win win like you beat the other person or you grind them down or you make them cry i don't mean anything like that it's like can i can i get my point across can i be listened to can i be apologized to if somebody else is in the wrong and can and can that person win with me can the other person if i do something that hurts them if i do something that's neglectful if i don't keep my word if like all all the natural detritus and imperfections of human relations can they win with me can they say wait a minute you said you were going to do this you didn't do it that's annoying annoying to me can can you say you know what you're absolutely right that was so rude of me i'm so sorry here's what happened i will do it right now i'm so sorry and and please keep on me about this i will work my very best to not do it again you're totally right i say that stuff i won't say i say it all the time but on a fairly regular basis i'd be like oh you know what you're absolutely right right and you know it's the whole thing i mean it's kind of become a joke right so So, my wife says, you're cold, you need a jacket.
Now, I associate being cold with femininity because I don't have blood circulating around my womb. It actually goes to my extremities, right?
So, for me, it's a bit of a manly thing to not need a coat. It's stupid, but I've just, you know, we might as well be honest about the silly things that are in our lives, right?
So, for me, it's like, you need a coat. Oh, so you're saying I'm not a man?
That's, like, literally, that's the equation at some deep primordial ape-like part of me, right? So what happens is, of course...

[1:41:07] I said, I don't need a coat. And she says, you know what? Let's just put one in the car anyway, just in case.

[1:41:16] And this happened like not even too long ago. So we went someplace.
I didn't need a coat, apparently. The coat was in the car. And what happens?
You're too cold. I'm freezing my tits off, frankly.

[1:41:34] Now, so what do I say to my wife? if i say uh listen can i borrow the car keys and what does she say, she says why oh no she knows me better than that what is she you're cold you're cold aren't you you need your jacket, ah now so you know what and i'm like you know you and i said you're totally right i needed my jacket jacket um i'm so sorry and it's not like i've got something big to apologize for but it's funny, so she was right i was wrong i needed a jacket and i went to the car, and i very much appreciated having the jacket and i said you know what i'm sorry to be so ridiculous about my jacket you know i'm like i'll bring a jacket i'll do my best right, but so she could she can win she can be right i can be wrong i can apologize i can reform form.
Can you win with people? Now, I gotta tell you, if somebody pulls the shiv of I'm fine with drug addiction, It's hard to see a scenario in which you're ever going to win if somebody's willing to go to that extreme for dominance in the moment.
If you're mad at her, I mean, did she apologize for saying F you?

[1:42:51] She did. Yes. I want to, because there were some, we, you're going to hate that.
I apologize too for, you know, yelling at her and for taking it to an extreme.
And, you know, she did as well.
We both. Listen, you had some things to apologize. Look, you had a few things to apologize for.
I mean, I'm not going to, you know, if she's six, if you're wrong six out of ten and she's wrong ten out of ten, she apologized for the ten and you apologized for the six. I think that's perfectly fine.
Okay. Yes. Because I did. I thought I was, I don't like that I lost control and I was screaming at her.
Yeah. You don't like that behavior in yourself and you don't, if your kids were watching, blah, blah, blah. Right? Oh, God. Yeah.
So, yeah, you had something to apologize for. and, I think that's perfect so I'm glad that she did apologize and this is why I said there's good things there too and all of that right so I also think it might be important for you to figure out the extent of the molestation I don't know if you do or don't know and maybe that's private for her and you but I would try and figure that out and figure out because there's so many different levels of molestation and, given the way your mom's personality is I'm going to assume probably worse.
I mean, it's all terrible, but there's still different levels of hell with this stuff.
And I'd certainly try and figure that out because you need to know what's unprocessed and how much there is.

[1:44:16] Okay. That makes me honest, just being honest, very anxious, even I, cause I, I don't, I almost don't want to get into that with her.
I just don't want to know.

Exploring options and possibilities in life

[1:44:30] That makes sense. I'm sure. No, I get it. I get it. I really do.
I really do. And I'm just telling you a suggestion.
Obviously, these are my thoughts. I'm just some guy on the internet.
It's your life and your relationship with your mother. So I'm just telling you my thoughts.
These are all your decisions. And please don't make a list of things I'm telling you to do, because that's the last thing that I want.
We're just two people talking about options and possibilities in life.
Yes. No, I appreciate that. And it's something, once we talk about it out loud like this, yeah, that's something I will definitely consider. et cetera. Right.

[1:45:06] Well, so that's the majority of what I wanted to get across.
Is there anything that you wanted to add? I'm sorry.
Again, I know we keep talking about a second person, but these calls are too important to each one. I want to give full attention to.
So is there something you wanted to mention or how was the convo for you?
What's your experience been like of the chat?
Oh my gosh, this is, it's been excellent. For lack of, This has been awesome just to hear a lot of things reflected back that I think I needed to hear that deep down I knew, but I just needed somebody to kind of reflect it back in the right way.
And the core of it is what's best for my kids.
And I absolutely agree that I need to figure something out about kind of with my relationship with her and not having her around as much or encouraging her to make some different decisions, which I know, I mean, that's all up to her.
I can't control that. I can't do that for her. And that's what's so frustrating is I just want her to do these things.

[1:46:15] And she won't do them. Oh. Well, that may be your desire, or that may be a carrot that she's holding out for you.
In other words, it may be that you really want her to do this, that, or the other.
But it also may be something that she, a desire that she evokes in you so that you have hope.
Right? So, because I think what's right at the bottom of the reaction, it's just despair.
It's just despair. It's like, this is, this is after 37 years, this is how we're dealing with each other. Come on.
There's real despair down there.
I didn't want to say it earlier because I don't want to label things.
And, you know, when people are in a very vulnerable state, they can be impressionable.
But I just, you know, now that we've sort of passed that storm, you know, what I felt?
Because, you know, what do I try and do? I try and get into the unconscious of people.
Sounds kind of creepy. I try to get into the unconscious of people and bring to the surface the voices that are unacceptable in the moment, right?
Because that's where usually the real truth is about the situation.
And what I got down there was, come on, after 37 years, my mother's telling me to fuck off.
Oh, is she my mother saying fuck you to me after 37 years?
Oh, my God. Like, where do we go from here? Like, what's savable, what's salvageable, what's solvable?
After 37 years, this is where we are. I think that there's just a real level of despair down there. Like, oh, my God, where do we go from here? year?

[1:47:39] It just seemed for so long we were very tight, very close, and then somewhere in my early to mid-twenties it just started to fall apart and then kept going and going and I didn't understand why.
That's when you outgrew her.

[1:47:58] Yeah, well, yep. No, it's when you outgrew her.
And, you know, hope is a very toxic substance in relationships.
Hope is desperately toxic.
And hope is really, really toxic. You know, listen, your mother was with your father, the drug addict.
She obviously found it unacceptable that he was a drug addict, but she sure hoped he would change, right? Yes.
And hope in a relationship is a denial of reality.
Because it's saying, I just want this person to be fundamentally different.

[1:48:41] Which is a rejection of who they are. Which is saying, I want to be close to someone I'm rejecting.
I want to be connected to someone I dislike.
I want to love someone I strongly disapprove of.
That's a paradox. And the way that we cross that paradox is with this weird, magical, collapsing bridge called hope.

[1:49:11] And hope is the most addictive substance in dysfunctional relationships, by far.
You have to accept people for who they are. Well, you don't have to, obviously, but it's wise to accept people for who they are.
The more you want to change people, the more you're rejecting them, and the more volatile the relationships become.
Because they're not really relationships. It's the hope of a relationship. relationship.
If I say, I'm going to get paid by hoping to have a job, what would people say?

[1:49:46] That's not going to work. Hope is not an income. And also, if you think you're going to get paid by hoping to have a job, you're never going to actually have a job because you think you're going to get paid anyway.
Anyway, hoping to get something is not how you get things. It's the opposite of how you get things.
Now, you can have a desire to get things, you can want to get things, but hoping, crossing your fingers, trying to pick the lock of somebody else's personality, fundamentally.
I mean, you say that your mom rejects you to some degree when she's upset with you, but you understand the more you hope for your mom to change, the more you're rejecting who she is. She knows that.
Why do you think she said F you? Because she feels rejected by you.
Now, I think you've got good reasons, but wallpapering over all of this stuff with just hope.

[1:50:41] Is, well, it's what I call an infinity fantasy, or an eternity fantasy, or an immortality fantasy is probably the closest thing, which is like, okay, well, hey, hey, if you have immortality, yeah, you can spend decades hoping for something because you've got forever to live.
But, you know, you're close to halfway through life, and we don't have forever. And wasting time hoping, wrecking ourselves through the opiate of hope, crossing our fingers, because hoping for the best, wishing people were different, but hanging around them anyway, finding their behavior offensive, unsettling, appalling, abusive, nasty, unpleasant, difficult, but then sticking around it because we're just going to hope.
I think that may be your, like, hope may be your cocaine, if you don't mind me putting it very strongly, which is a way of trying to achieve something positive without it actually occurring. herring.
I can figure out how to change my mom. I can make her better.
I can get in there, root around and rewire things and I can fix things and I can, right?
That's kind of addictive.

[1:52:06] Because yeah, and I, yep. Yep. Absolutely.
And I'm not putting you in the same category as your dad. Just, it's the really stretchy analogy.
I just, I don't want you, I don't want to be pulling one of your mom's things and saying like your dad, you know, whatever.
I really, it's a very lengthy and stretched out. And I have hope too.
I have hope for the world. And I don't even know if that's, I mean, I may be, you know, the real addict talking to a totally minor addict saying, you seem to have a problem with hope.
I mean, I have this whole thing with hope in the world, which I'll go into one day, which is, it could be completely addictive.
I gave up hope on politics and that seems to be pretty healthy, but you know, so I'm just, yeah, I don't want you to, you know, come out of this with like, my God, he thinks I'm a drug addict like my dad.
I just, that's, you know, I just, It's a really, really stretchy analogy.
I just wanted to point that out.
No, but I understand where you're going with that. No, and I agree.
Yeah, what's life if we don't want to change people?
What's life if we don't? I don't want to change you at all. I'm not telling you what to do. I'm not at all dissatisfied with this conversation.
Well, if your mom wants to call in, I'm happy to talk to her too.
But no, seriously, if she wants to call in, I'm absolutely happy to talk to her.
Because then she can tell me all about you and then I can support her.
Right? But I mean, I don't know. I'm just kidding. I'm just kidding.

Embracing Differences in Personal Relationships

[1:53:26] But I don't want to change you. I don't want to.
I'm just you know any more than you wanted you don't want to change a room by turning the light on right nothing fundamentally changes the room you can just see it i don't want to change you i think that there's things that are easier to see from the outside and you know that's the other that's why i'm always humble about this stuff because it's easy for me to see this stuff as i said earlier because i'm not you it's not my mom and i can have these fantasy speeches which i probably would never have in real life if it was my mom all this kind of stuff right so it's just a little easier for the outside that's all just as it's easier for people to see stuff about about me from the outside which is why having a great marriage is so important but yeah what what is life if you just take that burden off of wanting to change anyone just i remember this early in my marriage just realizing you know what men and women are different and my wife's going to do things that are delightfully incomprehensible to to me and i'm going to do things that are hopefully delightfully comprehensible to my wife and just don't change her don't try and don't don't say hey i'm really attracted to a woman now i'm going to try and turn her into a guy, That's not how things work, right?
And that just, I went through this, like, I don't know, close to 20.
We've been married like 18 years. We've been together 19 years.
And I'm like, yeah, what if nothing needs to change?
I mean, occasional tweaks here and there, blah, blah, blah, right?
But what if nothing fundamentally, like nothing needs to change about her? She's perfect.

[1:54:46] And what if that's your attitude in life? Don't try and change people. Don't have hope.
When they tell you who they are, be quiet and listen and see how you feel.

[1:55:04] Yeah that's mind-blowing to me and something i i need to to sit with and because we have this thing this is an economic argument yeah we have this economic argument that says well you there's no such central planning will never work control of industries will never work controlling people's lives totalitarianism control will never work and then when it comes to our own personal personal relationships, like, I'm going to rewire you so that you suit my needs better and you suit better behavior better.
And we, like, economically and politically, we're like, oh, man, this central planning, this control, this totalitarianism is terrible.
It's never going to work.
But when it comes to our own personal relationships, sometimes we big brother the living crap out of people, right?
I'm going to control, I'm going to monitor, I'm going to reward, I'm going to punish, I'm going to try and change, I'm going to have hope, I'm going to, like, but we wouldn't ever, you know, from an economic standpoint, we'd never say that. Liberation in the political sphere, fear we love.

[1:55:59] Accepting who people are in our personal relationship sometimes is tougher because maybe we don't actually like too much who they are and it's tough.
All right. Well, listen, I'll quit while I'm ahead for once, maybe, maybe. But thank you everyone so much for these fantastic conversations.
They really do fuel me and I really, really appreciate, you know, some of these thoughts are before, some of these thoughts are during, and it's the the thoughts during that make these conversations so amazing and incredible for me. So thank you so much for the listener.
Thank you to James for setting this up as always. Thank you to everyone, as I said before, who gave me such wonderful birthday wishes or gave my daughter such wonderful birthday wishes. We are one. forward slash donate. Please, please help out the show.
I really, really appreciate that. And you get all the goodies there too.
And have yourself a wonderful, wonderful afternoon. I will talk to you soon. Bye.

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April 2024

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